Disclaimer. All mine this time. If you're under the age of 18, I'm afraid you will have to go elsewhere for your reading material. This does hold adult actions concerning the same sex.

So be warned.

Authors note.

It has been a long while since I wrote or posted anything and I know some of you are awaiting a certain sequel. I do have it, but I am editing it at the moment, and will post as soon as I am happy with it. This story was one that I kept going back to and rewriting because it wasn't quite right, then all of a sudden it just flowed.

This is an UN beta read version. As it grew into such a monster my beta reader went into overload and I wanted to get it posted. So, please forgive the bad grammar and occasional misspell. I hope it doesn't spoil your reading too much.

Take care all and I will be posting more soon. As always please let me know what you think?






July 2000

The wind moved effortlessly through the trees like a lost lover's caress, barely stirring the branches into gentle movements. It was summertime, the air heavy with season's sweetness and scents. Long dry swaying grass stood bleached by the rays of relentless sun, causing it to take on a mirage of a field of wheat as it rippled like the skin of the sea in the breeze. The unusually low rainfall through the year had turned the river below into nothing more than a trickling bubbling brook, exposing once hidden rocks and stones to view, the sunlight giving them the appearance of twinkling gems for the taking.

One lone figure intruded into the scene. She was dressed in shorts and a white tank top, her hair the matching color of the summer grass. She walked in silence along the banks of the stream, pacing the same spot over and over again, almost footstep by footstep. Occasionally she would pause, her head bowed as if searching for the ultimate state of grace, her body becoming so still it was prayer like.

Above her looking down from the ridge, two police detectives sat cross-armed against the car.

“You're nuts. You know that right?'' The younger of the two looked sideways at his companion for a brief moment before his gaze went back to the woman below, a show of disapproval in his narrowed eyes.

The older detective exhaled, which tailed into a sigh.

“Look Pete. We have done everything on this case. Six months for Christ sake and we've come up with nothing.'' He inhaled again, the tiredness sounding in his voice. ‘'….What harm is it going to do calling her in on this? The parents need peace. Can't you at least understand that?” He ran his hand back through his graying hair, his eyes fixed on the woman below, but his brown-eyed gaze held something the other detectives didn't. Hope.

Pete grumbled. ‘'This is a fucking waste of time.''

Below, the woman stopped, her eyes closing, opening all her senses. She waited, breathing evenly and slowly, her head tilted as she picked up the bird movement from the trees to her right... A small smile twitched as she listened, a frown quickly replaced it, her face became pensive. Bowing her head down to a point her chin rested on the collar of the tank top.... Her breathing deepened. She brought her hand up brushing back a strand of mellow blonde hair from her cheek.

Inside her heart calmed, but she was aware of her blood rushing. She concentrated on a passing bumblebee, her inner energy vibrating around, almost crackling the air and causing every hair on her body to rise with the electricity. The beating wings on the bee seemed to slow no longer a blur of moment. Inside she focused her senses on the action until the point in her mind's eye each wing fell and rose as if captured in stop motion. She let the beautiful moment wash over her as she saw each and every tiny detail of its delegate wings. Reluctantly she let the image so, steeling herself, extending her senses further, reaching them out to the full area around, searching for the thread. She wasn't aware of the light sheen of sweat that now bathed her, in fact she was aware of nothing except her focus as time began to freeze, and stopped. The wind and the woman held their breath and so did the world.

She reopened her eyes slowly, scanning. She noticed the stream wasn't low anymore it was in full flood, high now up the banks, an angry currant snapping at the edges. She didn't move psychically but suddenly the world tilted and spun letting her see a different perspective and direction outside of her own vision. In panoramic the world spun, making her feel like a crazed cameraman had grabbed hold and was running around turning the edges of vision into a blur of moment. When it stopped she psychical jerked. But still she watched, letting her eyes take in the new view. Most of trees were barren of leaves, while others held the copper glow of rust. The air was icier, sharper. The grasses at her feet were short; the path she stood held a touch of white frost. She knew she had found the cord, the thread, one which would show her past events. The reason she was here.

Again her vision moved in shudders and now she was facing the picnic area. She watched the family get out of the automobile, laughing and happy. Watched as the man unloaded the food baskets, while the woman jumped out of the Explorer carrying the infant, turning back to help the small boy leap down.

Time leapt ahead again, the watcher inhaled sharply feeling her energy drain as she kept locked on the scene. This time the mother was sitting eating with the baby sat in front of her. The watcher turned her eyes to the laughter coming from behind. The father was playing Frisbee with his son... a smile came to the watcher's face as she felt the love radiate off the family, tapping into it to give her a momentary surge of energy.

Time leapt again into a blur of colors, to the point the woman thought she was going to throw up, she inhaled concentrating to slow the spectrum into some form of substances… then time halted. The watcher forced herself to step forward, feeling the resistance hug her body, but she made the step. She watched the boy chase the Frisbee as it sailed high, watched him pick it up and throw it again. She heard the man's voice calling not to go too far. The watcher turned as if in slow motion back to the picnic area, now the man and woman were talking. She forced herself away, her attention and senses now fully locked onto the boy, and she followed.

He had now crested the ridge before the bank of the river, disappearing down the other side. The watcher stood at the top and watched as the Frisbee entered the full river. Knowing the boy was totally out of sight of his parents. Her eyes tracked the boy, watching as he looked around now unsure, trying to reach it… all the time the Frisbee floated and bobbed up and down on the water being drawn further and further downstream, with the boy in pursuit.

As the boy followed the Frisbee, the watcher followed the boy.

Suddenly the Frisbee got tangled in a tree root in the center of the water… the boy looked around, grabbing a stick, he turned back to the Frisbee. His face set in determination to rescue his toy.

The watcher swallowed hard knowing what was to come, her eyes flicking upriver to the approaching fallen branch, and in slow motion she watched the unfolding past, knowing she couldn't change it. She swallowed and prepared.

The boy hopped onto one of the bigger stones, almost losing his balance but he managed to reset it, he crawled across the longer stone, his hand extended, poking the stick towards the Frisbee. His small face locked in concentration to the point his tongue came out. The stick caught the edge of the Frisbee and his face lit up…

That's when it happened. The oncoming branch struck his side sending him yelling into the tempest of water... he went under.

The watcher bit down on her mouth trying to hold in her own scream, feeling the cold water flush over her skin as it encompassed the struggling boy. Her nails dug into her arm as she held herself ramrod straight, to try and keep connected to the vision. Her connection jerked, now moving away from the surrounding to the boy and what he felt; fear…panic…pain. She felt the water enter his lungs, the impact of the rocks as they struck, each and every detail washed over her as they rushed over the boy.

The fight wasn't long, a nine-year old can't hold out long against ice water and nature. He went under for the last time.

The woman's face filled with anguish as she felt him die. With great difficulty she calmed her thoughts, pulling herself gently away from his connection, going back to one she could handle. Her senses reaching out again in a different way, to locate his body. Finding his tiny life thread she watched as the current caught him and pulled him down deeper in the swelled water. Slowly she brought her self-back, her breathing coming in gulps, sweat running free from each temple. She stood still, battling back the sobs, focusing inwardly, regaining control, hearing her heart calm, feeling her veins recede from the energy.

When she was ready she opened her eyes to the reality of now. She tasted blood on her lip knowing she had bitten it again. Her eyes took in the summer scene, the birds singing, the warmth of the sun on her now cold soul, she let it seep into her until she felt a small coal of warmth, letting it regain some of the energy used. After exhaling and wiping the tears from her eyes she looked up the hill to the two detectives.... With a sigh of sorrow she began the walk towards them, using each step to rebuild the solid wall around her, to face them.

The older detective stepped forward, nervous. “Well? Anything?”

She nodded, fully aware of the disbeliever vibe coming off the other detective. She swallowed, clearing her dry throat before beginning. “About a mile down the river on this side of the bank, about 15ft down below the water line there is a recess in the bank wall...it's a deeper wider part of the river.... Jeremiah is there... he got pulled under trying to get his Frisbee...that's why you couldn't find him. There was a cave in.... his body….”

Her voice trailed off, her eyes dull. She looked to each of them.

Both detectives blinked in surprise at the intense look.

Her voice was emotionless. “…. It was an accident. This isn't a kidnapping.”

Without waiting she walked past them straight to her jeep, stepping in she placed her sunglasses over her almost transparent green eyes, turned on the c.d. to full volume started the car and pulled away. Leaving the detectives with a face full of dust and the fading sound of Dusty Springfield….

“The only man who could ever reach me…was the son of preacher man.”

. . . .

Present day

The white beach house was tucked away nestled in-between two large sand dunes, the only way to spot it would have been if you walked along the beach and were directly in front. It held an old vintage charm telling you straight away it was built in the early centuries, when the first inhabitance lived on the small island. All it showed now was how isolated the whole place had become, a forgotten remnant of a once prosperous fishing trade. Now the island was no more than a rich man's or tourist's haven.

This was the last house on the island that showed the reality of life, of peeling paint and broken fencing. A sign the owner didn't have the money, or simply didn't care enough to repair. It had a nostalgic sadness about it, as if it had been caught in the wrong period of the twentieth century, that somehow it had breached the veil of the future and become a lost bubble of the past frozen in time.

Each window was covered in a heavy curtain, blocking all light from outside ever entering. They hung like guardians, keeping at bay the modern world and any sunrays from penetrating the inside of the house.

Inside, candles and oil lamps littered the rooms, throwing dim light and shadow throughout the interior. Flickering light radiated off every original beam of wood, another sign of the buildings true age. It wasn't an eerie illumination; in fact if anything it emitted warmth and safety.

A newspaper laid half-open on the breakfast bar. A blonde woman bit into her banana as her eyes followed the headline.

‘Tooth Fairy.' Strikes again

Murdered body found.

28 year old female… As yet unidentified .

This is the sixth killing within a four-month time scale. Each of the bodies was found with one tooth removed, which has labeled this killer the Tooth Fairy by the press.... Police are still refusing to comment the murders are connected ... story continues page four and five

She popped the last of the fruit into her mouth, picked up the paper rustling it open to page four.


A hundred miles away on the main land, Detective Shannon Rhimes slammed the phone down causing her partner to look over at her with a raised eyebrow. She bent her head forward, cascading long ebony locks, she ran both hands back through it uncovering her face.

“We are nowhere....” She let out a long drawn out exhale, resisting the urge to just bang her head on the desk top. Instead she slammed both hands palm down onto it, jittering all equipment and causing everyone in the squad room to lift their heads and glance over to her. She ignored them as she rose, pushing the chair away with her legs, her whole body a mass of tension as she lifted her mug refilling it with coffee, sipping as she turned back.

“Explain to me Pete how the hell someone can dump a body in plain view of a mall and no one sees? Or how another can be placed in the middle of a god damn fountain outside a library and we still get nothing?”

Pete choose to stay quiet he knew his partner was as frustrated as the rest of the Keys police department

“How long does he think we can keep this from the press they are already making their own minds up and we both know they aren't farfetched.” She tossed the newspaper at him

He turned it with one finger letting his eyes flick to it briefly. “Come on Shan we both know that's guess work on their part, they don't have any more proof then we do.”

Shannon inhaled throwing her partner a look for a moment, her head turning as she heard her name.

“Rhimes, Johnston my office.”

Pete looked at the retreating form of the Captain then rose to follow his partner towards the captains, office. They entered.

The Captain didn't bother to look at them. “Close the door and sit down.”

Shannon looked over her shoulder taking a seat as her partner closed it. Pete moved and sat to his partners left.

The Captain held a file in his hands, his eyes locked on it as he walked behind his desk to sit. Shannon looked over to Pete, who just shrugged in reply. Both of them turned their attention back to the Captain and just waited. A page being turned the only interruption in the silence. When he finished he cleared his throat and threw the closed file down on the desk, sitting forward his fingers meeting and going into a pyramid as he elbows went either side of the file, his eyes flicked first to Pete then Shannon.

“I have the chief of police screaming at me, he has the commissioner screaming at him, who in turn has the mayor screaming at him…. All of them want to know one thing…. What the fuck is being done about this case? Are you both getting what I'm saying here?”

They both nodded.

“Good at least we are on the same wave length… and all I have to tell them is we have as yet no one as a suspect and no ties to the victims, other than they are dead and all in the same god damn type of sheet…. We have no useable forensic or DNA. No witnesses and no following MO…”

He sat back stretching out his arms, the old chair creaking as he looked to each of them in turn, then sitting forward he cleared his throat. “All in all we have jack shit. Am I right on that assumption?” When he asked his eyes fixed on Shannon. “Well?”

“I won't lie... We have…” She paused. “….We have no new evidence…Only what you have just read in the file.”

He nodded. “Ok. Then answer me this, do you think the Tooth Fairy is going to kill again?”

Shannon's eyes jumped to his. “Yes.” She didn't pause in her answer.

The Captain nodded again, inhaling before he continued. “So do I. Look I know both of you are busting your balls on this…”

Pete smirked over to Shannon; she just threw a side look of non amusement.

“But unfortunately that isn't good enough for Chief. He asked me to form up a plan.” He ran his hand back through his hair. Clearing his throat he continued. “Because of the dead ends in this case and the pressure of trying to solve it within the killers time line, plus the lack of ideas coming from this department.” He sent a wry look to both of them. “I put in a proposal to the chief and it was accepted…”

Shannon gave Pete a sideways look again, seeing her partner suddenly shifted uncomfortably in his seat. Her eyes went back to the Captain in question.

“What sort of proposal? Are we being taken off the case?”

The Captain held up his hand to silence her. “No.... I still believe you two are the best minds for this one… The F.B.I are going to head their own task force and I'm sure they will make themselves known soon around here. However as I said I put in proposal, which is somewhat unorthodox.”

Again Shannon's gaze went to her partner as she heard him exhale sharply, noting that his face was now flushing red.

The Captain saw it. “Something to say? Detective?”

Pete clenched his jaw. “No. Sir.”

“I don't understand? If you aren't taking the case away what are you going to do?” Shannon tone was curious, looking at her partner for a third time beginning to wonder what really was going on.

The Captain reached down pulling open the draw, removing a large file, he placed it on the desk and pushed it across, as Shannon moved forward to get it, the Captains hand came down on top of it. “I hope you have an open mind Detective.”

She frowned. “I like to think so.”

He accepted her answer with a nod and removed his hand letting her now lift it and begin to read. Her reading was interrupted as Pete stood up.

“You have to be kidding me here Captain, not this shit again.” Pete looked first to the Captain then his gaze dipped with disgust to the file.

The Captain smiled. “You know as well as I do Pete, what she did worked, even if you can't explain it.… You witnessed it. You're just too damn stubborn to admit it did….” His voice trailed off, stopping the anger that was rising.

Shannon watched the exchange with silent interest, wondering what the hell was going on. Then she looked down at the black and white 10X8 photograph of the young woman. For a moment she was oblivious to the growing tension and the rest of the conversation as she starred at it.

“No matter what I think about this Captain, this isn't the right way to go…She hasn't been active in two years, she won't do it.”

Shannon heard the last remark filter into her distraction. “Who won't?” She turned the file over to the information.

“Miss Jennifer Newton… She has so called talents.” Pete's words came out as a sneer.

She looked over to her partner as he sat back down. “Talents?” Her eyes flickered from him to the Captain and back again.

The Captains tone snapped her attention to him. “She's a psychic.”

Both of Shannon's eyebrows rose, lifting her hairline. “A psychic?” She snorted, which faded when the Captain folded his arms and met her stare.


“You're kidding?” Her voice oozed with humor.

“No.” The Captain's jaw tensed.

“You want us to use a psychic to catch this killer?” Her tone now had lost all humor. Her gaze went to Pete now understanding why he saw anger in his whole body.

The Captain followed her gaze. “Pete has had dealing with her before, as have I… Read the file Detective Rhimes, it will give you full details of the cases she has worked on….” His tone softened. “Look…. I can't explain how she knows things, sees things…. Four times she helped us solve unexplained crimes. I don't give a rat's ass if you believe or not. She gets results and right now we need her.” He took a long breath, running his hand back through his gray hair. “Pete can fill you in on two of the cases; the file will do the rest.

Shannon looked at Pete again, seeing that he had his anger back under control. “You've dealt with her?”

“Yea.” His answer was through gritted teeth as he threw the Captain a dirty look.

The Captain ignored it, turning his attention to Shannon. “Her address is there. I tracked her down. Which let me tell you wasn't an easy task. I was surprised to find her in our neck of the woods. Now then, go see her, explain the case, take the evidence we have and all information so far. If I know Jenny she will be already following the case… She won't be able to ignore it.'' His eyes shifted to each of them, his voice took on the stern roll of a Captain. ‘'I don't care what you both think. This is my call. I want this done today.”

Pete shifted again, with a tight lip he spoke. “ She won't help us, and you know that as well as I do, she hasn't done this in two years… it's a waste of our time.”

“Then it's my waste of time Detective.” The Captains reply was curt and to the point, with a ‘ don't mess with me tone .' He out starred Pete then rose.

“That's all… Get it done.”

Shannon rose, the file now tucked under her arm as she followed her partner, catching the thrown open door as it swung back from the force.

Returning to their desks they sat.

“Mind telling me what the hell just happened, or did we just enter the X files or something?” Although a question, Shannon added a touch of sarcasm to her voice.

It did its job as Pete's face lost its frown and a small smile curved at the corner of his mouth. “Does that mean we get to play Mulder and Scully later on tonight?”

Shannon returned the grin. “You wish.”

He let out a laugh. It eased the tension.

Shannon pulled out her chair sitting, placing the file on the desk in front of her as she took up her coffee again and sipped. She had no idea of how she was supposed to deal with this, part of her still expected the Captain to run out and yell April fools, she really couldn't believe that he was serious with this.

“Mind telling me what this is about?” She tapped the file.

His eyes dipped to it for a moment then back up to her. “I don't believe in this mumbo jumbo shit Shan.”

“Yea. But he does and he's the boss.” Her head tilted in the direction of the office they had just come from. “So fill me in?”

He let out a sigh. “We used her on two cases I was involved in, she solved them… I don't know how. But she did.”

“Just like that?”

He shook his head. “No. We gave her all the information and evidence she asked for…”

“Maybe she was involved somehow?”

He snorted. “I thought of that, I checked her out, one of the cases she wasn't in the country when it happened, the other turned out to be an accident.”

“So how she do it?” Her curiosity now was peaking.

He lent forward. “My theory is she uses the files of the case to see things we don't... you know like some kind of profiler… We miss things, you know that I know that, but she, well she gets inside the case.”

Shannon slightly nodded, turning the file to the first case listed with Pete's name on it. “Tell me about the Cormin case?”

He relaxed back a calm coming over his features as he remembered.

“April 1999 Mr. Cormin wife Amy disappeared on the way to work. He filed a missing person report after he had checked with family and friends… She never arrived at work that day or home. We were called in… No witnesses no forensic. In other words after normal enquiry's we came up with nothing… there were no financial problems. No marital either. In fact if anything they were more than happy. No enemies… and no dirty little secrets to make her disappear.”

He took a breath.

“A week after the report, her car was found at the nearby train station…. We found one witness who remembers her there on the day of her disappearance, she remembered because she thought the woman had been crying… she also informed us that a young man she had never seen before or since was with Mrs. Cormin. Her husband and friends didn't recognize the description given.”

Pausing again for a moment he looked up at his partner.

“We went over everything and after six weeks we still had nothing, we had to move on, we had over fifty cases backing up, so we did…. But Cormin isn't short of money he hired private detectives… Then three months later he comes into the precinct with Newton in tow, wanting all evidence and background on his wife case. Grieves wasn't Captain then he was my partner and he agreed to give it….”

His eyes went to the Captains office in distaste.

“ Newton went over everything with a fine tooth comb, a week later she called us to go with her, she took us step by step over Mrs. Cormin's last day… Right up to the train, which we all went on. Then about twenty minutes into the journey she pulled the emergency stop… Shocked the fuck out of us then calm as can be she gets off the train… We followed.”

He stopped again and swallowed.

“She led us right to her, she was dead and laying in an old water runoff ditch been there since the day she disappeared.” He exhaled. “We would never have found her Shannon… and for the life of me I still have no clue how the witch did it.”

Shannon sat back as stunned, as Pete seemed to be. She let the ‘Witch' comment go, she was more interested on the killer. “What about the perp?”

Pete laughed dryly. “She found him too. Turned out to be a student from Boston who had been stalking her… Damn Newton led us right to where he was staying. We went in with a warrant and the idiot had a shrine and evidence removed from the body, he broke down with the whole story that he was in love with her every since he saw her give a lecture four years before at his university….” He shook his head. “As I said Shan I have no clue how this woman does it.”

Her eyes fell to the picture again. ‘' What about the other case?”

“That one is just as unbelievable... A nine year old boy went missing while out with his family… We checked out the parents and no way they were involved. Then we thought maybe kidnapping, although there was no forensic to back it up. The whole area was clean… We had a non-stop search of the area for over a week but nothing… no demands came, and time passed… The case was left unsolved, but Grieves wanted it closed, for the parents' sake. We didn't really think foul play was involved, there really wasn't any evidence, we both came up with the fact the stream was nearby … but we just couldn't find the body… So Newton came.”

“And?” Shannon found herself on the edge of her seat so shifted back.

“She came and did her thing…. She found the body all right, it was hidden in the bank walls about a mile away from his parents. The river there was a lot deeper, divers had checked it before but…..'' he paused. ‘'…. Fifteen feet down it there had been a recess, which had caved in. The diving team had no way of ever seeing it or finding him. The area had been swept with thermal imagining, but the water had been way below freezing, which meant the boy's body went cold fast….'' He shook his head, his eyes still showing the amazement of that day. ‘' But somehow she found him. Six months after he went missing. She knew where to look. Hell, not look, she pointed us right at the damn body.”

Shannon turned the file to the case, reading over it. “It says here she requested geology maps of the area?”

He nodded. “ Yea I know where you going with this… it's what I said at the start, she sees things alright but it's not visions, what she does is look at everything, her brain is like a damn computer with information, every fact every detail…. She throws herself into the case lock stock and barrel. It becomes her obsession.”

Shannon nodded. “So why don't you think she will help in this?”

He tensed, then sat back. “Two years ago she was involved in a case in D.C, someone was killing hookers… You heard of it?''

Shannon shook her head.

‘' Well, she was called in to work her shit. I heard rumors she lost it on that one went mental, had some sort of break down, she made mistakes... Another hooker died, when one of Newton's leads hit a dead end. She screwed up big time. Anyway, somehow the killer found out about her…. And got to her.”

Shannon's eyes shot up. “Got to her? How?”

He shrugged. ‘'Who knows how. But, he kidnapped her, had her for three days… He also had a little fun before the police could get to help, heard she was cut up pretty bad…. Had some sort of breakdown afterwards. Totally disappeared. Since then she keeps out of the public eye and the press… She has turned down any department that wants her help. Think it goes for private consultations too. This is the first I've heard about her in two years.”

Shannon took it all in, reading through the file at the same time as Pete recalled the cases. “Maybe that is how she does it… the profiler thing I mean.”

He shrugged uncomfortably. “Yea. That's pretty much my thoughts. She gives me the spooks with those eyes of hers, Shan. It they ain't natural.”

“Eyes?” She briefly looked up at him then turned to the black and white picture, noting the eye color on the description. “Green… You think green is spooky?”

“No. I think her eyes are. You know that actress Meg…. Meg something with those eyes that are almost transparent like albino. You know who I mean?”

She nodded, her eyes still fixed on the photo. “Foster, Meg foster.” Her gaze concentrated on the picture now knowing why it looked wrong, the eyes were pure gray with no pinpoint of an iris.

“Yea that's her, well Newton's eyes are like that only….” He paused. “ Well weirder, gives me the damn shivers every time she looks at you, makes it seem she's looking right through you.” He shivered. “Anyway let's get this over with.”

She looked up as Pete stood, pulling his gun from the drawer and lifting his jacket. Shannon soon followed, clipping her gun into place and heading out after her partner to the address at the front of the file, not knowing what she was going to find there.


The ride was a silent one, but not unpleasant. Their destination had taken them out of the haze and dry heat of the city, through the suburbs towards the ocean, something anyone would have traded on the hottest day of the year. The air conditioner within the car kept the journey cool.

Pete had taken the chore of driving and Shannon didn't argue she took the time to completely go through Newton's file. She became oblivious of the blurring scene that past them, becoming engrossed in the details of each case the psychic had helped on. Discovering that in all the forty-three cases Jenny had found an answer. When she finished the last case she closed it, stretching out her long body and only then took notice of the surroundings, confused to find that the car had stopped and they were now on a ferry.

“Um... Did I miss something?” She looked over at her partner, who at that point had his head out the window, breathing in long and deeply. When he turned to her she noticed his face had a tinge of green.

“Only me... throwing up lunch.” He took a long swallow and his pallor grew whiter.

She winced at the image. Glad she had missed it. “Where are we?”

He swallowed twice again. “Ferry… It's the only way to reach the island she lives on….”

As she nodded, she shifted back in alarm as Pete's hand went to his mouth while he fumbled for the car handle, opening it he shot out reaching the rail and hurling over the side. Shannon swallowed then tactfully turned her gaze away, noticing the pier start to come into view as the ferry maneuvered to dock.

The golden retriever sat at the top of the ridge, his head tilting causing his ears to flop to one side, his tongue lolling as he panted. His ears pricked and brown eyes tracked the car that came into view at the rise of the hill road. He watched it turn into the dirt track. With a low “ oof ”, he headed down the dune running flat out along the beach.

Pete pulled the car to a halt as they reached the end of the track, both of them got out. He looked down at his shoes then at the sand everywhere they were going to have to walk. “Shit, this is going to ruin them.”

Shannon grinned as she removed her light jacket, glad that she had chosen a light cotton suit for the day and sleeveless blouse. She stepped onto the beach, tilting her head back for a moment to let the cool breeze spread over her skin, she quickly tied back dark hair into a ponytail, and pulled down her shades. Looking at that moment, every inch someone on vacation.

Pete looked over at her and cursed, she didn't look like she was even sweating, and he was already beginning to feel the itching under his shirt. He at that moment looked like a businessman caught in their worst nightmare.

They both headed out along the beach, following the instructions they had gotten at the ferry post. After about ten minutes they spotted the house and approached. Shannon noted the woman sitting on the front porch as if waiting for them, a dog by her side. She knew it was Newton from the pictures, a thought passed over her mind as they walked up the path. The pictures didn't do this woman any justice at all.

Pete moved first stopping just in front of the woman, his eyes going from the woman to the now growling dog. “Miss Newton, I don't know if you remember me?”

As of yet Newton hadn't looked up, her hand just kept up a steady stroke along the dog's side. When she didn't answer Pete looked back over his shoulder to Shannon. Shannon could see he was trying to control his temper.

She stepped forward. “Miss Newton we are from the Keys police department, I'm Detective Rhimes and this is my partner Detective Johnson.”

Still the blonde woman didn't look up, but her hand paused on the fur of the dog. Then she looked up, her face tilting to Pete. Her sun glassed eyes turning to him.

“I know you.” Then her attention went to Shannon. “You weren't his partner back then.”

Shannon smiled, although inside she was finding it hard, for some reason this woman was pissing her off. “No… as a matter of fact the reason we are here is his old partner, he is our Captain now.”

Still the woman starred, remaining silent. But her hand resumed its stroking of the dog at her side.

All of them were silent, Shannon could see that Pete was having a hard time biting his lip, she turned her eyes back to the woman who still hadn't spoken again or moved from the step.

“Don't you want to know why he sent us?” Shannon was finding it even harder now not to get angry, the woman in front of her seemed to be totally void of any emotions at all.

Then Newton looked directly at her, her sunglasses reflecting back Shannon's image.

“I knew you were coming.” She rose and turned to walk up the steps back into her house.

Shannon shifted slightly suddenly feeling uncomfortable, then she picked up Pete's snorted words from behind her, knowing Newton must have heard.

“Yea I bet…. A vision.” He spat the sentence.

Shannon turned her eyes to the woman who had now stopped; one foot paused to board the last step, her head snapping around to focus on him.

“No... My dog warned me.” With a slight smirk she walked into the house the dog bounding ahead of her, the door closed with a resounding click.

Shannon found it hard pressed not to snort out loud, watching Pete suddenly blush bright red both in embarrassment and anger.

“Fucking freaking bitch.”

Shannon blinked in surprise at the venom in the words, she looked at her partner unsure. “Pete?”

He swallowed then calmed himself. “Don't tell me you didn't feel it, Jesus she's ice here, she isn't going to help us. Let's go.”

“We can't do that; do you want to be the one to tell the Captain why?”

She shook his head, chewing his teeth together for a second. “Fine.”

With three strides he reached the door and banged on it.

“Look Miss Newton we are here to get your help… Captain Grieves sent us to ask you.”

Shannon was watching her partner carefully wondering why the hell he was suddenly so mad.

“We aren't leaving here until you hear us out Newton…” He banged the door again this time louder.

Shannon had had enough she grabbed his shoulder turning him from the door. “What the hell are you doing?”

He shrugged off her hand. “Getting what we were sent here to get.”

“What you gonna do arrest her? Jesus Pete calm down, what is going on here?”

“Never mind… fine.” He turned around throwing up his arm, moving to the fence to lean against, crossing his arms. “You deal with her.”

Shannon just stared at him, then she heard the door open, turning her gaze back she found one pissed off woman with her arms crossed starring at her, all she was missing was the tapping foot.

“Am I under arrest for something?”

“No… no of course not.” Shannon took a short breath. “Can we go inside Miss Newton?”


Shannon blinked in surprise at the tone. “Well Ok then… We will talk from here. Look the Captain does believe that you can help in a case we are working on.”


Shannon looked up her eye's going from her hands. “No! That's it, no questions as to what it is.”


Shannon could feel her anger beginning to rise. “Are you familiar with the Tooth Fairy murders?”


The one-word answers were really starting to annoy her. “That's the case he believes you can help on.”

“I can't.” This time Newton looked away.

“You can't or won't?”

Newton's head snapped back. “Does it matter which?”

Shannon body shifted. “Well yes, one is unavoidable the other is a choice.”

The blonde tilted her head for a moment as she starred, then she stiffened.

“I'm sorry you came here for nothing and it was a waste of police time.” She turned to leave.

Shannon stepped forward her hand reaching out to grab the woman's arm, suddenly out of nowhere the blur of the golden retriever appeared knocking it away, he now stood between them growling.

Newton turned realizing what must have happened, her hand came gently down on the dog's head, silencing him. Her head going up to look at the detective who was looking at the dog in amazement.

“Don't ever try to touch me again.”

Shannon quickly recovered resisting the urge to count the fingers on her hand. She stepped slightly forward well aware of the growling dog, this time she didn't make the same mistake of reaching for the woman as she turned to leave.

“Wait please... Please.” Her eyes were still semi locked on the dog, which now seemed to have found a stone more interesting than her arm.

The blonde woman turned. “What?”

Shannon warily stepped back to give the woman some room. “I have the files here, the evidence all of it, what harm would it do you to look over them. Twenty-four hours of your time. If after that you still feel the same, I'll go back and let my Captain know. Sound fair? You could at least give us some insight of what you think? ”

Newton's eyes dipped to the file then back up to the detective her face slightly softening. “Interesting choice of words.”

Shannon relaxed a little. “So?”

For a long moment Newton thought about it, then she met Pete's eyes then Shannon's. “Leave them on the porch, I'll look.”

This time she called the dog and went inside and slammed the door shut hard.

Shannon let out a long noisy exhaled breath through her teeth. She moved putting the file and box next to the bench sliding it under. Pausing she looked at the door then headed down to catch up to Pete who had already started off up the beach.

On the other side of the door Jennifer was trying to gulp in air, her body shaking. As she hugged herself she slowly slid down until she was sitting on the floor, immediately she felt the warmth and the calm of the dog come and lay beside her, closing her eyes she tapped into it letting his energy pulse over her fear. When she was calm enough she opened her eyes. Pulling the dog to her, grinning as he started to lick her face. “Thank you.”

His answer was to bury his head under her chin and lick there, his tail wagging into her leg.

She laughed then hugged him closer, stroking his back. “I don't think that woman even knows how much power she throws out Buddy…Jesus I've spent too much time alone I could hardly handle it…”

Then her mind went back over the conversation, the Tooth Fairy killer, she had known someone would have looked for her to help on it, she had made her mind up to turn whoever it was away no matter what. But here she was offering.

“God what am I doing?”

Her voice showed the insecurity and fear as she whispered it. Sensing his mistresses rising distress again, he whined briefly then covered as much of her as he could as he climbed into her lap, resting his chin on her chest and just starred up at her with brown sorrowful eyes.

Jennifer held onto him, tilting her head back closing herself off from everything else around her and the turmoil of fear that licked at her subconscious like a whispering demon.

Shannon finally caught up to her partner, he was leaning against the car tapping out the sand from his shoe. Before she spoke she took a calming breath, letting the anger recede.

“What the hell did you think you were doing?”

He looked up at her briefly then replaced his shoe. “She isn't going to help us and this is a fucking waste of time.”

Shannon turned her head away cursing inwardly, she knew Pete's temper was a part of the partnership she didn't like, in fact if she really thought about it she didn't like him at all, he was self centered. But usually his temper came out when a situation was volatile, this was the first time she had actually seen him blow up over nothing. It was one of the reasons she knew he had been passed over promotion and the main reason Pete didn't get on with his ex partner now Captain. Simply Peter thought he should be Captain and had more experience than anyone else in the squad room.

Turning back she looked at him, she softened her voice. “What's really going on here Pete?”

He paused, his hand holding the shoe, then he finished banging it on the side of the car before replacing it. “She's a freak.”

Shannon took a long breath. “You don't even know her; come on there's something else here?”

He threw a look of anger at her and pulled the door open. “Nothing, let's get back and tell Grieves she isn't going to help.” He got in and started the engine, waiting and tapping on the wheel as he glared out at her.

Shannon looked back up the beach then came to a decision. Moving she looked in leaning through the window to him.

“I'm staying, at least till she looks at the files, you go back and tell the Captain I'm here, I have my cell phone call me if you need me.”

He rolled his eyes his jaw tensing. “Fine!' With that he threw the gear into reverse, just giving Shannon enough time to grab her jacket through the window and step back before the car shot backwards.

She watched him turn, with a mixture of curiosity and anger on her face. Then she realized she had no where to stay. “Well shit.”

Slinging her jacket over her shoulder she headed back towards the beach house, wondering if the day could get any worse.

Jennifer had recovered enough and within ten minutes her curiosity had gotten the better of her. She brought the file in and left it on the table and busied herself in the kitchen with occasional glances back to it.

“Who am I kidding?” With a sigh she sat down and began to shift through the contents.

Shannon had reached the edge of the house, she debated whether going to the door or just sitting in the sand. In the end she sat down on the edge of the dune facing the sea, taking off her shoes she wiggled her toes in it. She let her eyes look out across the horizon. It was the first time in a long time she had stopped long enough anywhere to watch the world go by. Soon her thoughts calmed and she became lost in the beauty. Tilting her head up as a lonely gull screeched as it dipped.

Inside Jennifer placed the six photographs of the victims out across the table, putting them into order then pulled the forensic on each one, reading through it.

Outside Shannon shifted back, tucking her jacket under her head to rest back on to. She stiffened as she felt something hit her stomach, looking up she froze. The golden retriever was sitting next to her, his head tilted as it watched her.

Shannon swallowed, unsure if she was just about to become doggy food.

“Um... Good dog.” She slowly started to sit up.

When the dog barked Shannon jumped. “Shit.” She scrambled to her feet, looking around for a weapon, she didn't think shooting him would go down well with the owner.

Instead the dog watched her, tilting his head again as he stepped forward, noticing her step back. He woofed again, almost chuckling to himself as she jumped, he could smell the fear coming from her, but he could also smell the fact she was hiding it and the sense that she didn't want to hurt him. So instead he turned back lifting the stick and came up dropping it at her feet.

“ Arrrrrroof.”

Shannon's eyebrows appeared over the top of her sunglasses as she watched him drop the stick. Taking a long breath she realized that was what she had felt hit her stomach relieved to find it wasn't someone's arm.

“So you want to play?”

“ Oofffff.” He added a wagging of his tail, sensing the fear drop on the woman.

Shannon looked at him for a moment, then a smile crept onto her face.

“Okey dokey. Haven't got anything else to do here.” Lifting the stick she threw it towards the surf.

The dog took off at once.

Now that the dog was out of range, Shannon let out a long breath. Within a short time her fear for the dog had gone and she actually started to enjoy the game.

Inside Jennifer's focus was completely on the information in front of her, slowly she was building a picture of each victim. There was also something else there, niggling at the back of her subconscious as she looked over each victim. She relaxed back the pencil tapping on her chin, then she became aware of the fact Buddy was barking, frowning she rose walking slowly to the window to look out. Surprise spread over her face as she caught a glimpse of the detective suddenly going down as Bud barreled into her.

“Oh my god…” she started running only slowing in amazement as she watched her dog suddenly appear in mid flight above the sand dune, his ears thrown upward by gravity. She picked up her run, skidding to a halt watching in utter disbelieve at the scene in front of her.

The detective had the golden retriever pinned. Her hands holding his front paws down, her legs pushing down on the “grrrrrrring” wiggling form.

“One…. Two… Threeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Ya out of hereeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee… “

With that she jumped up, letting the struggling dog rise, running in circles to avoid him as he tried to lock on to her with snapping jaws, Shannon burst out laughing. “Hey… hey it was a far fight…. I had ya…”

The psychic felt the laughter, felt the joy… closing her eyes she slowly erected a wall to it, crossing her arms.

“Excuse me. What are you doing to my dog?”

Shannon stopped, spinning to the voice. Which was a bad idea as the dog couldn't slow in time his paws dug in throwing sand up as he hit her legs from under her.



Jennifer couldn't hold it she let out a laugh. She coughed it clear, putting on a more serious face as she approached the pile up.


Immediately the dog paused “rut roow” , his eyes went to his mistresses, almost sighing he went to her side, looking up at her with his best “ sworrrrrrrrrrry” reflecting back up at her with an added. “Arroff.”

She smiled at him and ruffled his fur then looked back at the crumpled detective. “You ok?”

Shannon sat up testing her body, then rose brushing the sand away. “Yea.” She threw the dog a look. Who just gave his best I'm ignoring you stance.

Jennifer nodded. “So?”

Shannon shifted embarrassed for a moment. “Well he wanted to play stick and then we kinda got into the wrestling.”

Jennifer bit her lip trying hard to hide her own smile, instead she took the time it took to look down at her dog to compose her face, trying all the world not to laugh out loud at his best “Who me.” Expression.

“I meant why are you still here? I told you I would let you know.”

Shannon looked up from brushing her pants down. “Kinda thought about that, you don't have a phone or computer so thought I would just hang around. “ She shrugged.

“Oh... Well the island post office has a phone I usually use that to get to the outside world.”

Shannon couldn't miss the sarcasm in the last bit. She was about to come back with an angry comeback when she caught the woman trying to control her smile. She scratched her head feeling the sand.

“I'll admit it I didn't think it out; I just didn't want to get in the car with Pete.”

With that the small blondes head snapped up, the smile no longer twitching at her mouth. “Can't imagine why.”

For a moment they looked at each other.

Jennifer was the first to break it. “I suppose you are thirsty?”

Shannon nodded. “Yea didn't think that one through either.” She added a smile hoping that it worked.

Taking a breath the blonde just nodded. “Come with me.” She slapped her thigh and the dog fell into a heel beside her as they headed back to the house.

Shannon watched her for a moment then followed, pausing outside the door well aware she hadn't been asked inside, so instead she chose the bench. Using the time to knock the sand out of her shoes.

After a few minutes the blonde returned with two cokes, handing one over. “Buddy is now drinking his bowl dry.”

Shannon looked at her, chuckling as she took the drink. “The dogs name right?”

Jennifer simply nodded and sipped her own drink.

“Well he worked me hard, better than anyone, don't need to spend tonight in the gym. Hard to imagine he was the same dog that nearly ate my arm.” She pulled the tab on the can and drank, her eyes going out to the sea again.

This time Jennifer answered the smile, finding herself actually liking the detective across from her. “He was protecting me and he wouldn't have hurt you unless you intended to hurt me…he was just warning you.”

Shannon didn't look over, instead she just nodded, figuring it out for herself during the time alone with the dog.

The silence this time wasn't forced it was an almost natural pause. Jennifer took the time to look at the woman. She could feel the power again pulsing, as it filtered free. Gently she erected a wall around her senses to a point she could handle the intrusion. Then she looked at the woman herself.

Shannon knew she was being scrutinized, and for no reason could feel the blush warming her skin. She had yet to see Newton's eyes, but she was fully aware of them looking her from top to bottom. So she kept her own eyes fixed on the sea.

It didn't take long for Jennifer to see the detective was very attractive, how could she not be, dark long hair, a fit body and tall. As she looked longer she realized she was starring no longer at the power but at the person, and liked what she saw. The thought springing into her mind threw her, she snapped her eyes away.

Feeling the inspection was over Shannon sat back. “I can see why you live here, it's beautiful.”

Jennifer gave a gentle forced smile. She was still unsettled and she didn't like it. “Yes it is, and isolated.”

Shannon looked at her. “Is it that important to be alone?”

“For me yes.” She stiffened.


Jennifer inhaled with a sigh. “Do I have to have a reason?”

Shannon shrugged. “Usually there needs to be... It's a choice.”

The psychic turned her head slightly to study the detective again, this time her face was serious. “Yes it is, and I have my reasons.”

Shannon nearly kicked herself as the whole woman next to her closed her out again and the emotional face fell in to place. “I didn't mean anything by it, just curious, I wasn't going to judge you.”

Jennifer blinked. “What makes you think people judge me?”

Shannon let her own smile come out, sipping at her coke. “Because you close up expecting them too… You're not that hard to read you know. Besides, I am a detective.”

Jennifer thought about it for a moment, then let her own smile show. “I know I'm not…. Mainly because I intend you to see I won't be messed with, it's a defense mechanism… and yes I do expect it because in my experience everyone is the same at judging me… because of what I do.”

Shannon just nodded.

“No questions on that detective?”

“Look call me Shannon or Shan ok, I really get pissed off when people use that title in the way you just did, like I'm a label, I have my own defense mechanism on that one.” She stiffened.

Jennifer kept silent totally understanding her comment on labels. “Ok then Shannon, call me Jenny, anything but Jennifer, it reminds me of a maiden aunt who I hated. As I said you have no questions on that part of me?”

Shannon looked at her, wiping her forehead a moment. “Yes I have, but I'd rather you wanted to tell me than me just being another predicable person wanting to know.”

Jenny sat back a little for the first time relaxing. “Maybe I will one day, who knows. But I'm betting your curiosity will get the better of you before then.”

Shannon grinned. “Can't help human nature Jenny.”

Jenny met the grin. “No guess not.”

Shannon didn't want to spoil the moment, she felt the woman next to her open up, but she also knew she was on a time line. “Look as much as I like this, I do have to ask?” she paused.

Jenny sat up, “the case right?”

Shannon couldn't help the disappointment as she felt the walls come up around her companion. “Yea.”

“I've looked over them briefly…' she stopped then took a long breath, not really believing what she was going to say next. “ I'll help if I can.”

Shannon sat forward a little surprised at the sudden turnaround from the woman, but she let the question of why die on her lips. ‘Great that's great, I'll contact the Captain.”

Jenny stood up, rising her hand to silence her. “But I have conditions and if you can't agree now I'll wait for the Captain to agree, I'm not helping unless I get them.”

Shannon paused, listening.

“I'm not going to leave the island I work from here, I want all info as soon as your department finds it, I will be requesting things you haven't covered and I need them without arguments or secret police policy bullshit… I wouldn't ask for it if I didn't need it…. Some of it will come across as, well let's just say strange and to you may seem stupid or meaningless. If I didn't need it I wouldn't ask.”

She took a long breath before continuing. “I don't want anyone outside of the department knowing I'm helping in this. That includes the F.B.I. I don't need to be strong armed into giving information I'm not ready to give.''

Shannon briefly wondered if that's what had happened in D.C. She nodded waiting.

Jenny took a breath, anger sounding now. ‘' And I don't want to find my name on the front page of any newspapers or media. You get me. ”

Shannon shifted slightly at the anger aimed at her. “I can't see that being a problem Jenny.”

Jenny turned away to look at the sea then turned back. “And I need…” her voice broke for a moment. “ I need to know I'm safe.”

Shannon rose wanting the entire world to touch the woman who now was almost shaking in front of her, but she didn't. “As I said I'll run your request passed the captain, but what I will promise is that you will be safe… ok?”

Jenny just nodded.

“I'd better get in touch with the Captain and get things in motion, is there anything you need right now?”

“A laptop.”

“You have power here?” surprised eyes jumped to look the house up and down.

Jenny couldn't help the snort of laughter at the expression on the detective face. “Believe it or not Shannon, I have power, gas, water and a phone line, it's just my choice not to use them.”

Shannon felt herself flush. “Sorry, just thought… well ok I will get what you want, about the phone you want one brought in?”

Jenny shook her head. “No. I can live without it.”

Shannon looked at her for a moment, and then understood that a phone line could be traced, she wondered if that was how the D.C. killer had gotten to her. “Ok no phone…. When do you want me to contact you?”

“If they agree to my conditions send the laptop and the rest of the forensic as soon as possible I'll contact the department when I have something.”

She rose then headed back inside, instead of going straight in this time she turned back to look at the detective.

“It was nice meeting you Shannon.” She smiled then went inside closing the door.

Shannon waited for a moment a smile coming to her face, then turned heading back up the beach, pulling her cell free and dialing the precinct.

Getting off the island wasn't as easy as Shannon thought, finally she hitched a ride with a rich inhabited using her police badge as leverage. Returning to the precinct she ignored her partner as she made her way to the Captains office, knocking.

He looked up beckoning her in. “Well?” he replaced the phone he held in his hand.

“She'll help, but she has some conditions...”

He nodded slightly. “Thought she might, and let me guesses she won't help if they aren't met?”


He sat. “Ok what?”

“She wants full access to all files when she asks for them no bullshit….” Shannon looked up a slight smile coming to her lips. “Those are her words.”

The Captain laughed, “oh I bet they were, ok done she has access, what else?”

“She wants kept out of the media, I think in fact she wants the less people to know the better…. She… Um she wants to be safe on this one Captain.”

His eyes saddened then he nodded. “Understandable. Ok I will post a team to protect her. Anything else?”

“No.” she shifted uncomfortably.

He saw it looking up in question. “What?”

“I don't think she is going to go for the protection team, she wants to remain isolated…. I get the feeling she would see that as an intrusion.”

“Fine I will post them around the island to watch her.”

“We both know that isn't going to get her much protection, I've seen that place anyone could bring a boat ashore on any of the beaches unseen.”

He sat forward. “You have something else in mind?”

“Yea... But I get the feeling she really isn't going to go for it….”

He watched her for a moment. “You want one person with her at all times right?”

She nodded.

“You're right she isn't going to go for it… unless.”

She looked up meeting his gaze. “Unless?”

“You.” He pointed at her.

Her eyebrows rose. “Me? No way, I got a case to run and what the hell makes you think she would let me go anywhere near her.”

He shrugged, rising to get a file from the cabinet. “Because you were the one she said yes too.”

She looked at him then understanding dawned. “You didn't expect her to say yes at all did you?”

He shook his head, giving her a sly grin as he sat. “In truth no I didn't, so either something happened with you to change her mind, which means she trusts you to some degree.”

Shannon bit the inside of her mouth; she didn't like the feeling of being used as bait. “Is that why you sent Pete, knowing full well those two hate each other.”

He glanced up from the file. “She and Pete have history I knew you would be the good cop to his bad cop…. You seem to forget here detective this isn't about you, or her or me for that matter, it's about a killer who is playing games with the police department and for me the cost of another innocent victim is way too high…”

She sighed. ‘‘So what makes you really think she will let me protect her?”

“Her fear.”

Shannon shifted uncomfortably. “Sir. I'd rather not do this, I prefer to work on the case personal rather than be someone's body guard.”

He slightly nodded his gaze now not leaving the report in his hand. “And I have dually noted your opinion…. What else did she want?”

Shannon let out a long sigh realizing she really didn't a choice anymore. “A laptop and all forensic…”

He looked up smiling. “ Ok get what she needs and pack up your stuff and head out there I will tell Pete to keep you updated on the case you can handle the four man team I will send to the island tomorrow you will be in charge of her ok. The usual four ok with you?”

“ Yes but I'd prefer Tully to Amins on this one, he has a problem with being subtle and as much as I'd like his experience watching my back, he is going to stick out like a sore thumb on the island.”

The Captain chuckled, pulling up an image in his mind of Amins ex fighter look trying to fit into the elite and rich inhabitances. “See your point. Ok done, they will be there when you get back tomorrow... Anything else?”

Shannon shook her head as she headed for the door. She stopped the door half open as she glanced over at her partner then back to the Captain. “Why does he hate her?”

The Captain followed her gaze to Pete. “Not my place to say, either he or she will tell you if they want too.”

She nodded then headed out to inform her partner of her new assignment knowing damn well he wasn't going to like it.

Shortly after the detective had left Jenny couldn't help herself, full curiosity took over. Clearing a wall free of pictures in the den she began to tack each of the six crime victim photos up. Placing each in a horizontal line across the wall, leaving a foot gap in between each, with a five-foot clear area below. Slowly she began categorizing each forensic and info, into their relative position below each victim. Leaving the once bare wall now looking like a macabre broken jigsaw puzzle. In between the gaps of evidence Jenny used a magic marker to write Evidence needed .

During the following three hours she worked like a woman possessed scribbling on her notepad any small fact or question which came to mind or raised an unanswered explanation as she focused on each victim in turn.

By the fifth hour she now knew the names and background of every single one of them, now they were people to her not just victims. Her thoughts were completely calm as she worked, before she had started she had erected a wall around her senses so not to pick up any outside vibes from any of the evidence. She didn't need that part of herself so soon in her investigation; this was more about the facts of the case and what the evidence showed.

Long before she realized her so called ‘gift' was here to stay, she had made her mind up she wanted to be an investigator of crime, to use her powers seemed to be like cheating. She knew she had a mind that was special even without the powers, it became more about the challenge of the crime rather than the solving, that came later when she realized it wasn't a game.

The part she loved was the puzzle, the solving, and finally the answer. Her gift would only be used when the answer didn't make any sense or the answer needed to be proven. But it didn't always work out that way, because in the end she had to use her powers to make her name and bring in the clients, and that changed everything because then she only became known as the “psychic.”

In a way she hated that part of herself and for a long time through her late teens and early twenties it had caused her nothing but pain, grief, ridicule, and scorn. When her powers began to grow she distanced herself from family, friends and relationships, but more the outside world itself. During that early time alone she discovered how to focus her power and control it, using sensor walls around her to block the now constant bombardment that had nearly drove her mad.

When she decided to work on unsolved crimes, like this one, she virtually became an unemotional vacuum, which both helped and hindered. The high price was each time she did it she lost a small part of her own humanity, because in that ice state she missed things that were right in front of her. That was what happened two years before in D.C. she had closed herself down so far inside herself she missed the warning signs.

Jenny jerked awake as the memory replayed in her mind, for a moment her eyes searched the darkened den, flicking nervously to every shadow, then her brain filtered in the information of familiar surroundings.

“Jesus…” She sat forward, rubbing her neck, noticing her hand was trembling.

‘Arroof!” The dog watched from the door, unsure, his head lifting to sniff the air, he could smell his owner's fear, but he didn't understand it.

Letting out a long breath, Jenny looked over her shoulder to him. “It's ok boy…. Just bad dreams. Come here.' She patted her leg.

“Oof.” Relaxing, his tail wagged as he approached.

Smiling Jenny sat back letting her fingers scratch behind his ear. “Can you explain to me Bud what the hell I'm doing?”

His only answer was to raise a paw and put it on her knee, tilting his head and panting, causing his lip to get stuck on his canine tooth.

Jenny laughed, ruffling his fur. “You are such a dork.”

With an indignant look he left going to his empty food bowl, giving it one look than a stare to her. “Arghwoof.”

She laughed again as she rose, pausing to groan and stretch out her spine, then got the dog chow from the cupboard and filled his bowl. “There ya go boy sorry it's so late.”

No answer came, just the breeze of a wagging tail.

Pulling an O.J. from the chiller sipping it, she walked passing the wall, pausing to look at it, then shaking her head she moved to the open door, leaning against the framework as her eyes took in the moonlight scene reflecting in the bay. Her eyes closed for a moment as she inhaled the salt air. The only sound was the waves coming in and out, that and one loud low rumble, which came from her stomach. Sighing she turned from the door, closing it with her foot as she made her way to the kitchen.

“Let's feed the other beast in the family.”

Shannon had gathered all the information and evidence that she knew Newton would want. Also stopping at the armory for surveillance equipment and a vest. Finally she met up with the four-man team and had given them instructions on where she wanted them when they reached the island the next day. Her final task before leaving the department was getting a laptop, after that she headed home, deciding to start fresh in the morning.

On the journey home her thoughts kept going back to Jenny, part of her was pissed at the fact she was now no more than a glorified bodyguard. While the other side of her meant what she promised. She wouldn't let anything happen to the young woman. Thoughts and questions were with her the whole time she went through her nightly routine and were still there as she got into bed, setting the alarm for 6 am. Reaching over she switched off the light, letting her gaze go out the window to the full moon, her last thought as her eyelids grew heavy was. “Who really is Jenny Newton?”

As the detective and the world slept the night passed with no sign of the Tooth Fairy killer, people continued their normal routines, either choosing to believe it wouldn't happen to them or just not caring enough to change their routines. The moon moved across the sky, stars filtered through until the sun rose and another day was born.


A silhouette darkened to a shadow stood at the window. Eyes bright, a glass of wine, came to his lips, leaving a dark stain of scarlet on his lips, before it was licked clean. He starred into the night.

The knock at the door didn't make Jenny jump it was the loud “ WOOF!” that did and sent tea spurting from her mouth.

“BUD!” He immediately lay down, his head on his paws, his brown eyes following her as she walked past.

Scooping up a cloth she wiped down her legs as she approached the door, not opening it. “Yes?”

“Hi Jenny … it's Shannon .”

Jenny blinked in surprise then tossed the cloth away feeling the need to straighten her appearance, realizing what she was doing she stopped, mentally cursing at herself, as she pulled the door open, blinking in pain as the sunlight blasted her eyes, she stepped back to reach her sunglasses.

“You ok?” Shannon had seen the action. “Sorry am I to early?”

Jenny turned back, still feeling the sting of the sun on her retinas. Trying to blink the two orbs of light still fresh in her vision away. “No… no not at all.” Her eyes dipped to the box in the detective's hands. “I see he agreed to all my requests…”

Shannon grinned. “Yea… think you knew he would though right?”

Jenny gave a slight smirk. “Might have.”

The detective held out the box, making sure not to cross the threshold, still knowing she wasn't invited.

Jenny took it then walked back in, placing it on the table, pulling out the laptop she realized the detective wasn't with her, she turned back seeing the somewhat sheepish detective standing unsure at the threshold. She felt a small pull of warmth at the fact the detective had respected her privacy.

“Would you like to come in?”

Shannon head shot up from her feet, not helping the grin. “Thank you.”

Stepping in she removed her sunglasses, letting them adjust to the dim light of inside, then walking further in she let her gaze take in the room.

Jenny watched the detective, inhaling silently as the blue eyes were revealed, quickly she swallowed turning her attention back to the contents of the box.

“I like it.”

Jenny looked back over her shoulder, meeting the detectives smile. “Thank you, I do too.”

This time Jenny let her stare hold for moment longer than necessary, before she removed her own sunglasses, her attention going back to the evidence.

Shannon was aware again of the woman's gaze on her as she looked around the room, she wasn't prepared for the jolt she felt as Jenny removed her sunglasses and suddenly she got her first view of her eyes.

“Wow.” Shannon bit her lip realizing her thoughts had come out of her mouth as the young woman's head snapped around to her in question. “Um sorry, your eyes, they … well they are…. Just …well….”

Jenny peaked an eyebrow, smirking inwardly as the detective fumbled for words, she decided to help. “Wow.”

Shannon snorted a laugh. “Yea wow.” She scratched the back of her neck nervously.

Jenny chuckled, she had had many responses to her eyes, she knew they were unique and drew people's attention. “Yea I guess they are.”

“They're light sensitive right?”

Jenny turned fully this time. “Yea they are… how?”

“I'm a detective.” Shannon grinned. “And I caught the grabbing the sunglasses thing when you opened the door... How sensitive?”

“Sunlight and bright direct light mostly, as I‘ve gotten older it has gotten worse.” She didn't speak the part that in daylight without shades on she was virtually blind.

“So you wear dark glasses all the time?” Shannon was becoming more interested by the minute, she wanted to answer that question which posed itself before she went to sleep.

“No, I have contacts specially made, I can wear those, but when I'm around the house I find sunglasses work better.”

Shannon nodded then her eyes flicked briefly to the curtains and oil lamps around. “It that why you use those inside, and not electric light?”

Jenny crossed her arms, her stare now was full of suspicion. “Is this an interrogation?”

Shannon eyes shot around. “No. No of course not, I was just interested, I'm sorry if it came out that way.”

Their eyes locked for a moment and Shannon got the feeling that something was touching her skin.

Jenny dropped her eyes immediately as she realized what she was doing, as her subconscious had started to probe the woman in front of her. “Well I'd rather you just left, thank you for bringing what I needed.”

Shannon frowned. “Jenny I am sorry I didn't mean anything by it.”

Jenny forced a smile. “No problem, but I do have work to do…” she turned away lifting the box and headed out towards the den.

Shannon stood there wondering what the hell had just happened, taking along breath she moved to follow, stopping when the dog moved in front of the door, his tail was wagging but she could tell that he wasn't about to let her pass.

“Hey Buddy how you doing?” she bent down offering out her hand.

For a moment he stood his ground, turning his head in the direction of his owner, then he came over sniffing the out stretched palm.

Smiling Shannon ruffled his fur. “Let me guess that way is off limits to me right?''

He answered with an “ oof.”

Shannon nodded. “Well you see I have a problem I need to talk to her again and I'd rather not yell at her through the walls like a fishwife. Don't think she would appreciate that approach do you agree?”

Cocking his head he looked at her, then again in the direction Jenny went.


Shannon laughed. “Yea something like that… Jesus I'm talking to a dog here.”

His answer was to raise a paw and hit her with it. “Mmmwoof.”

“Sorry… sorry, seems my day for insulting things.”

Sighing she rose, taking one look at the dog again then the open door ahead, then making a decision she sat on the chair in the kitchen, folding her arms and waited. “You might as well tell her I'm not leaving boy.”

He wagged his tail, then turning he let out a long drawn out grumble, which to the detective at that moment sounded all the world like he was chuckling.

When Jenny came back ten minutes had passed, she blinked in surprise as her eyes fell on the detective. “You're still here… I thought I asked you to leave?”

“You did.”

Jenny moved to the kitchen filling a glass of water, leaning back against the counter. “And the reason you didn't is?”

“I hadn't finished what I came here for and quite frankly Miss Newton I'm not someone you can just dismiss.”

Jenny looked up from the rim of her glass, for a moment the anger of the detective flooded over her senses, needing to distances herself she moved into the living room, choosing the rocker by the window to sit in. “Ok I'm listening.”

Shannon lent forward, trying to relax the tension in her body. “The Captain agreed to all of your concerns and the demands for the evidence, none of which is a problem…'' She looked over to the shadowed form. “There is one problem… your security.” When Jenny didn't say anything Shannon continued. “We can't protect you here on the island; I have a four man team coming which will watch the docks and any strangers which show up…”

Jenny rose. “So what is the problem?”

“You know as well as I do, you need someone close to you.”


Shannon sighed. “Well that's the problem, I don't think we can make you feel safe unless you do have someone with you 24/7.”

“I said no... Work something else out.”

Shannon had had enough she rose, striding towards the blonde, well aware that the dog had risen and stepped forward, she hoped he would understand what she was doing. “You listen to me, I gave you my promise that nothing is going to happen to you, you want me to make you feel safe, well fine, but I need some cooperation from you to do that, I know my job, let me do it.”

Jenny stepped back. “ I said no and I mean no… get a bigger team to come to the island set up cameras I don't give a shit of how you do it just do it. I'm not having someone I don't know around me all the time, its hard enough dealing with people as it is…”

Shannon really wanted to know what that comment meant but she let it go for now. “Ok then how about me?”

Jenny turned to face her in surprise. “You?”

“Yea... The Captain has given me the assignment…. Could you handle me being around that close, now that you know me a little?”

Jenny's eyes narrowed. “But you don't want to. Do you?”

Shannon bit back the retort, running her hand back through her hair she turned away then went to sit again. “In all honesty no I don't, but if it's the one thing that makes you feel safe and work with us on this, I won't take it as a great hardship to baby-sit you.”

Jenny's jaw tensed, then realized the last part was aimed as a joke as she watched the blue eyes in front of her sparkle. “Why?”

“Why what?”

“Why do this… you don't believe I'm a psychic.”

Shannon thought about it before answering. “I don't know what you are, or what you do…. All I do know is I have read through forty-eight cases you have worked on and solved, and right now we have nothing on the Tooth Fairy and he isn't about to stop killing…” She was well a where that Jenny was studying her the whole time as she talked. With an almost tired exhale she continued. “ I don't know what you do Jenny and I don't even deem to understand the how of it… but right now you are the best thing to catch this murderer. Whether I believe or don't believe isn't the issue, you are helping us here, and you made the request to be safe. The one thing I do believe is, I can do that.”

Jenny had listened and after a moment of thinking she met the detective's eyes. “Do you believe in psychics in general?”

Shannon let out a long sigh. “This is a loaded question, if I say no am I walking out the door?”

Jenny shook her head, as she tucked back a loose strand of hair behind her ear. “No. This is a personal question I need to know, well do you?”

Shannon watched the hair tuck and for a beat it threw her, it made the blonde seem years younger, shaking her thoughts clear she continued.

“I don't believe or disbelieve, I've never met one before, and I've never seen it or witnessed it. In my life I have seen strange things, and I don't deem to understand the universe and what powers she has.”

Jenny smiled. ‘A doubting Thomas…”

Shannon stared in question. “Who?”

Jenny laughed. “Not a bible reader I see… Thomas was one of Jesus' disciples, he didn't believe that his lord could come back from the dead, even after the others had told him they had witnesses it, he never believed until he could touch the wounds and see for himself...”

“Well I guess I am then.” Shannon relaxed as soon as she saw Jenny had.

“So if I prove myself you would believe your own eyes?”

Shannon met her gaze, now no longer intimidated by the green of them.

“Probably question the hell out of it.”

Jenny laughed. “Well at least you're honest.”

Shannon gave her a large grin, although her tone had turned totally serious.

“I always am Jenny.”

There gaze locked again before Jenny broke it as she passed the detective to sit by her dog, letting her hand smooth over his fur, taking his calmness and using it to sooth her senses. “Ok so say I let you protect me, what exactly will that mean?”

Before Shannon turned to face her she let a smile tug at the corner of her mouth, but when she met the blonde woman's frank look the smile had gone.

“I stay here, and out of your way, I make sure the team keeps me updated and where you go I go.”

Jenny was silent, as she thought, she knew this wasn't a great idea she was finding it hard to keep her wall up around the detective.

“And if I still say no, what then?”

“I camp outside your door.”

Jenny had to hide the smile on that answer, clearing her throat she looked up meeting the intense blue gaze again.

“Ok… You can stay in the guestroom it's out the back and has a separate outside door, I'd rather you stayed in there and left that way… I can't take you in here all the time, when I ask you to leave it's because I need the distance, not for other reasons…. Ok?” She rose.

Shannon grinned. “ No problem I'll get my stuff.” She headed to the door.

“Pretty sure of yourself aren't you.”

Shannon paused, her hand on the handle as she turned back. “No not really, but I was sure enough to know I would be sleeping on the beach for the next few days.”

Jenny laughed. “Ok.”

As the detective left, Jenny moved to the window her gaze following the figure as it moved away. She could feel the wall inside her draining her, seeing that the detective would be gone for a while she let it drop. Inhaling a lung full of air as the surrounding peace flooded her senses. Another scent cascaded over her, for a moment she was dizzy, knowing it was Shannon 's. She sighed heavily, this was going to take a lot, this trust and just having Shannon around. For two years she hadn't been alone with anyone. No attachments of any kind. Now there was going to be someone living in her home and for the life of her she had no clue why she'd agreed. But, even as she thought that she knew on some level why. She was lonely. She took a breath again inhaling Shannon 's scent. Deep, musky, alive. Part of her responded to it, as she felt the tightening of her stomach muscles and warmth begin to spread, before anything else could respond she slammed the inner door shut on the scent.

She knew the best option was to just tell the detective to leave, she didn't need the added intrusion while she was working on the case, but a bigger part of her was whispering below the surface, the fear. Since the incident in D.C. she had found it near impossible to control it. At first she had put it away and it only showed its self during dreams, the place she had no control, it woke her constantly covered in sweat and her heart threatening to explode, with a scream stuck in her throat. Nothing at the beginning would halt its advancement in her subconscious other than becoming an insomniac.

Through the following two-year period she had worked hard to quell her demons, now once again working on a case she could feel the tendrils start again beneath her senses, the memories. Making the choice to help had fueled the paranoia again that someone was always watching. But she knew once she did make the choice to help she would have to deal with it and something made her trust the detective more than she thought she would ever trust anyone. Then there was the whispering part, the loneliness, a human need that craved another's voice or presence, something that when the detective was around seemed to quieted.

Turning away from the window she set about finishing her breakfast, after which she went into the guestroom opening the windows to air out the staleness of the room.


Within the next hour Shannon had moved her things into the guestroom, noticing that the bed had clean lined on with a smile as she set about unpacking. When she finished she exited the veranda doors and checked out the area, making mental notes of blank spots. Another hour had passed by the time she returned, now she had the lay of the land and any problem points. Making sure she had what she needed for now, she headed back to the house, pausing at the open front door, letting her gaze fall onto the blonde woman who was sat on the floor crossed legged who seemed to be meditating.

“Can I come in?”

Jenny opened her eyes then inhaled, finally turning to the source of the question. “Sure, how are you settling in?”

“Fine... Thank you for cleaning the room, you didn't have too, I would have… I don't want to interrupt your time working Jenny.”

Jenny shrugged as she rose. “The least I could do?”

Shannon held up the bag. “I'm not sure what you think of the bakery at the harbor but I stopped over and got some fresh rolls and pastries.”

Jenny this time gave a genuine grin. “I love it.”

Laughing Shannon moved into the kitchen, then stood unsure. “Um… is ok if I'm in here?”

Jenny finished making a note on the laptop then looked up, seeing that the detective was very uncomfortable. “Ok I think we need some rules, would that help?”

Relieved Shannon exhaled. “God yea...”

“Ok then… you can use anything you want from here… you don't have to keep asking. The only rule I have is that when I need to be alone I will tell you, until then you can come and go anywhere in the house… well nearly anywhere, Bud won't let you go in my bedroom… he's trained for that ok. I work mostly in the den and I'll show you that later.”

Shannon 's eyes twitched to the bedroom door. “Ok no problem.”

Jenny walked over, her eyes dipping to the bag a hungry smile coming to her mouth. “So what did you get? Because it smells amazing.”

For the first time Shannon truly relaxed and thought. “Maybe this isn't going to be so bad.”

During the first day together, they had both settled into a routine. True to her word Jenny showed her the den. Shannon was very impressed by the layout of all the victims, taking notice of the information under each woman. The fact the psychic had used much the same formula and layout she had when talking to the task force impressed her again. It told the detective something new about the psychic; Newton was serious about her job and knew what she was doing. When Jenny made it known she was ready to get back to work, Shannon had left near lunchtime to welcome the surveillance team and to set out their assignments, she wanted the port covered at all times, and any unknown to be reported and checked out. For the Two remaining surveillance team she leased a beach house on the farthest side of the small island, which if need be could become a safe place at short notice. The forth member was deemed a beach bum who would virtually cover the island keeping to the coast areas watching out for divers and surfers. Shannon made it known within the small harbor that she was vacationing on the island with friends, with that covered she reported in to the Captain.


Jenny had discovered something surprising while working that morning, the detective had come in unannounced to get something. Jenny at that point had been totally engrossed in a detail which didn't make sense, it was only after the detective had left did she realize her senses hadn't jumped through the roof at her presence, in fact if anything they didn't reacted at all. If she hadn't have been so caught up in the question that wouldn't go away in her head she would have noticed its relevance more, but instead she set about solving the problem in front of her.

The latter part of the day involved Shannon setting up her own equipment in the guestroom and radio communication to the four-man team. While Jenny had used the time to go through the smaller police reports via the laptop, to fill in loose ends on each case.

The day continued.


Shannon looked at her watch for the fifth time. 6 37pm, her eyes went to the closed door again, shifting on the guest bed to get more comfortable. Lifting the dog-eared paperback she tried to turn her hungry thoughts to the ones created on the page. A light tapping on the door stopped her attempt, she swung her long legs over the side of the bed.


The door opened gently until a smiling blonde head appeared. “Hi... I don't know if you want to join me for dinner?”

At that point as the 6ft frame rose her stomach let out a long rumble.

“Guess that's a yes… come on.” Jenny chuckled as she ducked back out.

Shannon tossed the book on the bed as she followed the retreating form. As soon as she cleared the closed door her nose filled with the tell tale smell of something good. Her eyebrow peaked as she saw the small table was laid out for two.

“What do you want to drink?” Jenny kicked the oven door shut as she asked her hands full.

“Beer if you have it.” Shannon sat, then grinned down as she felt a wet nose hit the back of her hand. “Hey there.”

Jenny balanced the hot dish until she could put it down on the edge of the table, making sure to push it fully on the heat mat. Her eyes narrowed as she watched the table cloth waft outwards, ducking slightly to see under the table, to come face to face with the innocent looking dog.

“Yea right and you know that isn't allowed at meal times… go sit.”

With a long sigh, Buddy ducked his head and tail and made his way to the porch.

Shannon coughed away her laugh as Jenny locked eyes with her.

“He knows your easy Shannon .”

Shannon 's eyebrow shot up, at the same time Jenny started to blush. She turned away getting two beers from the chiller then set to dish up the pasta.

“Hope you like vegetarian I don't eat meat, this is just garlic cheese, tomato, herbs and pasta, sound ok?”

Shannon held up her plate. “Sounds great.”


Once the dinner was dished they both began to eat, both aware of the silence but neither of them knowing exactly what to say.

“This is good.” Shannon spooned another mouthful into her mouth to prove the point.

Jenny relaxed back in the chair dabbing at the sauce with one of the rolls, before popping it in her mouth. “Thank you. It's actually nice to cook for more than one.”

Sipping her beer Shannon a wry smile twitched at her mouth. “Does that mean having me around isn't so bad?”

“Well not as bad as I thought.” Jenny couldn't help returning the smile.

“I promise to make it as pain free as possible… I have a question?”

Jenny looked up briefly then turned her attention back to her dinner. “Ok?”

“Can I ask who you're afraid of? I mean, is there something that has sparked wanting protection?”

Jenny spoon froze mid way between her mouth and the plate. Then she lowered it. “I made a mistake once, I'm not about to do it again.”

“You mean D.C. right?” Shannon took it easy on her questions, knowing the signs that the woman in front of her was getting tense.

“Yes.” Jenny placed her spoon down, choosing the beer instead. “You read the report I take it?”

Shannon nodded.

After taking a long drink, Jenny shifted uncomfortably. “Well…. That should tell you what happened.”

“What happened yes, why it happened no?” Shannon made sure she kept her eyes locked on the green ones looking at her as she spoke.

Two gazes stayed locked.

“Why is it important to know Shannon ?” Jenny's voice dropped as she spoke.

Shannon broke the stare, shrugging slightly, before toying with the pasta with her spoon. “It isn't important, I just wanted to know, as you know I've read your file and the cases, and at no time did you ask for protection, including D.C. I guess what I need to know here is… Have you had a feeling about this one? You know the psychic thing?”

Jenny sat back trying the entire world not to scoff, instead she placed her spoon down with a clatter. “Oh god, now you choose to believe I have talents.”

Shannon blinked, not entirely sure what she had just said to cause the green eyes she saw fill with pain. “Ok maybe I didn't phrase that right.'

Jenny rose, taking her dish to the trash, scrapping the leftovers into it. “Oh I think you phrased it exactly how you meant too detective.”

Shannon flinched at the use of her title again. “Jenny I...”

Jenny spun around cutting her off. “In answer no I haven't had a feeling, but I know one thing here, no matter what promises your Captain has made my name will come into this case… I also know within a day of that happening I am going to be front-page news… I don't want some freak out there wanting to make me their trophy again ok…So I choose this time to have someone with a gun between me and the fruit loop….” She slammed the plate into the sink. “God you are just like all the rest aren't you, what am I a freak show to you too. Something to go back and tell the rest of the boys about….” She inhaled, turning away her whole body shaking with anger.

Shannon had watched staying silent, slightly caught off guard by the explosion of anger she was witnessing. Taking a breath to pause before she spoke, she then continued. “Jenny… “She waited. “ Jenny pleases.”

When the blonde woman still hadn't faced her she rose, stepping closer.

“I really didn't mean anything by it… As for telling tales well, if you knew me better you would know that isn't who I am.”

Jenny closed her eyes, her arms coming up to hug her chest. This had been a bad idea and she knew it. She couldn't do this.

Shannon exhaled not sure what to say or do, she ran her hand back through her hair, looking around as if searching for help, she noticed the dog laying head on paws in the corner, his gaze going first to her then back to his owner. Taking a breath she let her voice try and show the true emotions inside. Even though she felt confused by the turmoil of them.

“Look… I'm finding this as hard as you are ok… I don't really know what to do except protect you but I needed to know from what and now I do… You're the one who has shown you have something special around police work. I told you I didn't understand the how of it… I'm working blind here Jenny… if I put my size 8 in my mouth it is a genuine mistake. I'm not here to harm you or ridicule you….” She stood there waiting for a response, when none came her eyes filled with sadness, turning she headed back to her room, pausing for a moment she looked back. “I'm sorry if I hurt you in some way…. I never meant to, please at least believe that. “Then she went in and closed the door.

As the door closed tear-filled eyes flicked to it and stayed.

When the early first rays of dawn pushed through the window, the detective was already awake and watching, the slight grayness under her eyes and their bloodshot redness were witnesses that she hadn't slept well. After leaving the kitchen the night before she'd paced the small room until she heard the psychic finally go to bed. After which Shannon had left the house by the guestroom door to patrol the area and check in with the team. For one it gave her something to do while she tried to figure out what had happened. She spent the time away trying to get her under control. She was annoyed at herself, for some reason she couldn't get the usual control she had. Anger had replaced most of the turmoil, anger at not understanding one bit of it no matter how hard she tried. All she did know for sure as she reached the peak of the sand and starred back at the darkened house below, was the fact she hated that she had caused Jenny pain. With that thought and the steel twist in her stomach she turned her full attention back to securing the area. Work she understood.

It was well past two am when she returned, and hours later she had finally closed her mind's questions and eyes giving way to sleep. Now with daylight blazing in on her she sat starring at the ceiling, her arm under her head, thinking. She had come to a silent conclusion as she walked the darkened beach last night; maybe she wasn't the best person for the job. Everything she seemed to say or do seemed to piss off the woman she was now protecting. If truth were told she would rather be out working the case itself, but something deep down realized Jenny was the answer to solving it. She was a cop and that meant questions had to be asked, she knew at times she could be tactless, but she never classed herself as hurtful, but she had been she had seen it in Jenny's eyes, what she still didn't understand was how or why?

Grumbling she rolled over punching the pillow a few times before resettling.

But still her thoughts continued. For another ten minutes she debated what to do, finally having enough and knowing sleep was not going to return, she got up. Dressing quickly in her jog gear, grabbing her gun and phone and quietly as possible slipped out onto the beach, concentrating her mind on her usual morning run.

In the adjoining room, Jenny had a similar night; she too was awake as the sun lit up the curtain throwing a warm amber hue light into the normally dark interior. She had tossed and turned through most of the night, hearing the detective leave and return in the early hours. At first she had tried to calm her mind and return to work, sitting in the den for hours starring at the picture wall trying to focus, but something blocked her. She knew what it was, it was her own emotions and they sat heavily, acting almost like a fog that wouldn't fade. She didn't understand her own reaction the night before; normally she was in complete control. After thinking about it she had come to the conclusion it was the detective herself that was the problem. Shannon wore her emotions fully out in the open, they were raw and powerful and although the gift would feed on that much power, Jenny usually could sense the change within her and temper it in some way. That in it puzzled her, it could be the fact she hadn't been alone like this with a person for almost two years, but another smaller voice inside was telling her that it was because Shannon was unlike anyone she had known. Shaking her head she sat up, answering that remark in her head with a,” yea right …”

There was also the problem with the case, something about it didn't make sense. She'd had enough time now to go through the evidence, what there was of it. Also pulling apart each victim to find some connection, the resulting answer had been none. No connection, none what so ever. That was strange but not uncommon. The victims had been killed in the exact same way, left wrapped in a sheet, all in the same pose. Normally she could come up with a reasonable profile just on that information alone. But, all she really had uncovered was the killer wanted to be noticed, to be known, but unlike most serial killers this one didn't want to be caught yet, he was playing a game and enjoying it. What she didn't like was the more she concentrated on the case the more she was beginning to realize that the game was with her. Not she as in Jennifer Newton, but with the person the killer knew would be brought in to profile him. When that thought flashed in her mind late in the early hours, she had been frozen by fear and the images of D.C had driven her running from the den. To calm herself she had argued it down with the logical brain that always saved her, she was letting her own paranoia rule her. That had calmed her enough to finally close her eyes for a few hours, but now here she was awake again with another dilemma, She had questions that needed to be asked about the case, so how did she face the detective again?

After hearing the guest door close curiosity made her rise, peeking through the curtain, only to catch a fleeting glimpse of the detective as she set off down the beach in a full run. Blinking the brightness away Jenny returned to the darkness of her room and began to dress, her mind turmoil of questions with no answers.


Shannon loved the feeling pulsating through her as she increased her strides into a full run, the sand was different to running on asphalt, she could feel her feet sinking and the extra pull on her calf muscles as her legs readjusted to the strain. Testing muscles more, she pushed her body, increasing her run. Her breathing increased slightly to accommodate the new need for oxygen, but it was still even and calm. The only visual evidence that her body was under strain was the full sheen of sweat that began to film her skin. For another five minutes she kept up the pace, then without pause she began to slow to a steady rhythm, letting her long legs effortless carry her along the shore line. Inside she was focused on her body and the run, her thoughts had silenced their previous questions and for just a moment she found peace. Checking her watch, she slowed to a stop, stretching out her legs and pausing to drink from the water bottle, her eyes took in the area around her. She couldn't miss its beauty, but the eyes she was looking through were trained to look for other things. Instead of the amazing blue of the sea, and the yellow egg of the sun, all she noticed was the two boats just off the sandbank, and the surfers further up the beach.

Sighing she replaced the bottle back into the hip pack wishing she could turn that part off sometimes. Finally with one last long look around she headed back towards the beach house, using a slow jog to give her body time to come down from its high.


Once Jenny had argued enough with herself she decides the best plan was to simple get on with her morning ritual. Once showered and dressed she opened the back door and the front to let the morning breeze into the house. Welcoming its sweetness into the old building. It wasn't that she disliked the smell of old beams and brickwork but in the summer a heavier scent always seemed to fill her home, one that reminded her she kept herself locked away far too much. Once the doors were open it meant that Bud took the opportunity to exit and do his own morning ritual. Grabbing her sunglasses and putting them on she sipped her coffee as she watched him shooting from each side of the sparse garden before heading out towards the beach. She followed at a leisurely pace until finally reaching the water's edge she sat, tilting her head back for a moment to enjoy the rays on her face. She knew she should be back inside and trying to work through the questions that were now raised, but for some reason today she wanted to be outside more than anything.

Bud's low “ rwoff.” Alerted her to the fact that the detective was heading back along the beach towards her. Instead of rising she waited, clicking her tongue at the dog to silence him.

Shannon slowed her pace as she realized Jenny was sitting about hundred yards in front of her. For a moment she considered veering off to the right and heading around the back of the house to enter, not really wanting to continue the scene from last night.

“ Morning.” Jenny kept her eyes locked on the horizon.

Deciding the option for retreat was gone Shannon kept her pace going until she drew to a halt next to the blonde. “ Um… morning.”

“ Good run?”

“Yea… better views here then at home” Her eyes scanned the horizon.

Jenny nodded.

Unsure of what to say or do, Shannon dropped down onto the sand, stretching out her legs, feeling very uncomfortable with the whole thing.

Jenny took the last sip of coffee, her face looking into the now empty cup.

“ I'm sorry for what happened last night.”

Shannon hand stilled on rubbing her muscles, taking a sideways peek at the woman. “ No problem.”

Jenny looked across, seeing the tension in the detective for some reason made her sad. “ Are you always so forgiving of people that bite your head off?”

Shannon chuckled and relaxed back to lean on her hands, stretching out the rest of her tall frame. “ No, not really.”

For a breath Jenny let her eyes travel over the detective, then blushing slightly at what she felt she concentrated on her empty cup again. After a silence she spoke her voice low. “ It wasn't you I was mad at you know?”

Shannon 's brow frowned slightly. “ It wasn't?”

Jenny shook her head. “ No… you kinda got the backlash of a thousand triggers of things by arseholes in the past, concerning what I can do…. I haven't been around people much in the last couple of years…” she looked up briefly then turned her attention to the sea. Pausing for a moment to form her words. For the first time she wanted someone to understand. Wanted Shannon to understand. “… I wasn't ready for someone actually trying to have a normal conversation and be curious, I mean I did tell you to ask things…” Her eyes went back to the detective. “ I truly am sorry.”

At first Shannon was about to shrug it off, but there was something in the psychic's tone, a venerability that wasn't there before. “ Jenny I'm not saying I won't put my foot in it when I'm around you but I won't ever just say something to hurt. I'd rather you told me when I'm treading on your toes so to speak, then…. Well before a … another…. Another …um.' Shannon scratched her temple, trying to find a better way of putting it.

Jenny interjected, smiling. “ Tearing your head off happens?”

Shannon grinned. “ Well yea, anything to avoid that.”

Their gaze held for a moment and both had a sense of relief in them. Shannon 's tenseness vanished, she relaxed, and she kept the gaze. “ If I do say or do something Jenny, I really would prefer you talking to me about it. “

Jenny had to grin back. “I will try.”

Both their gazes held for a moment longer becoming uncomfortable, two sets of eyes turned away to find something else to look at.

Jenny rose, brushing the excess sand off her legs, then looked down at the detective. “ Are you up for some questions I have?”

Shannon was up at once. “ Yes… can I … um. Take a shower first?”

Jenny nodded, flashing a white teeth grin. “ Actually I insist on it.” Turning she headed back to the house.

Shannon stood for a moment, wondering how someone one minute could be as cold as ice and another have a temper to match a waking volcano. Slowly she followed, her thoughts filled with questions of when did she actually turn into a babbling idiot when it came to women.

The shower hadn't taken long, when she came out of the bedroom, she went straight into the study, towel drying the last moisture from her hair. Jenny's head rose briefly from the laptop and gave her a small smile, before returning her gaze to the notes she was going through. Shannon took the silence to wait, so she combed out her wet hair with her fingers and sat in the corner chair.

Jenny after about five minutes finished and sat back, laying her glasses down, her eyes for a moment took in the sight of the detective bent forward brushing out her wet hair, she inhaled and cleared her throat.

Shannon looked up.

“ I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt on something Shannon .”

Shannon sat back frowning in question. “ You are?”

Jenny nodded, relaxing back in the chair, crossing her legs. “ Yes.”

“ Ok…. I think.” Her face dropped to the table and the evidence laid out.

“ Was it your idea or the captains to keep some of the evidence back as a test?”

Shannon 's eyes widened, then jumped to the contents laid out on the desk.

“ What?”

Jenny's hand dipped to the evidence list and tossed it across the table, Shannon reached across turning it, her eyes going over the list then to the tagged bags on the table. But as she read she realized although the evidence list matched what was on the table, it didn't match what she knew should have been there, but now wasn't. Her eyes jumped to Jenny's face her jaw tensing. “ It wasn't me… As far as I knew the evidence was intact.”

Jenny studied her for a long minute, trying to gauge if she was lying. When she was sure her instincts had been right, she relaxed and lent forward. “ So you admit that it isn't all here?”

Shannon nodded, her jaw clenching again.

“ Which now rises two questions… one, where is it? And two what the hell was it?”

Shannon was heading into the bedroom by the time Jenny was asking the second question, when she came out her voice was already raised as she yelled down the phone.

“Pete! What the hell did you do with it? Don't give me that shit, you were the only person near the damn files. Fine I'll calm down…. Now tell me why… god damn it…. No I didn't notice it she did… your way out of line on this… just fix it… I want it here in two hours… Don't push it Peter…”

Jenny tried to relax as she quickly erected a wall feeling the anger radiating off the detective and invade the whole room as she argued on the phone.

Then just as suddenly as the outburst had begun it stopped along with the cell phone being snapped shut.

Shannon took a few deep breaths before turning. “ Pete took it.”

Jenny just nodded, she had figured as much.

“ He put it back into the lock up... He wanted to make sure you didn't have anything to do with this case…” taking a longer breath blue eyes looked over to Jenny. “ I'm sorry I honestly didn't know about it. I‘ll report it to the captain tomorrow.”

Jenny chewed the inside of her mouth for a moment, then walked back over to sit at the desk. “ Don't bother, just tell me what is was... and how soon I can have it here?”

Shannon let out a breath. She really didn't want to rat out her partner no matter how much he had stepped over the line. “ Thanks… he won't pull anything like that again ok.”

Jenny waved her off. “ Just tell me what it was?”

“ A coin.”

Jenny looked up from the sheet. “ A coin?”

Shannon nodded. “ Each victim had a coin placed in their mouth.”

Jenny sat back, she turned the chair around to study the photo wall for a moment. Then she rose moving slowly in front of each. Turning she looked at the paper from the day before. Suddenly the headline name made a lot more sense to her. “ Tooth fairy… so that where he got the name.”

When green eyes came up to meet blue, Shannon simply nodded.

“They didn't mention the coin in the press?”

Shannon shook her head. “ No… my guess is they found out about the tooth being removed from each victim and some smartass thought of the name…not realizing how close to the truth it was.”

Jenny scratched her neck a second, then returned her gaze to the pictures.

“ Or you have a leak, and the press is just biding its time to hit the real headlines with the info.” She left unsaid the part about if that was true her name would be on the same headline.

Shannon took a large inhale, the thought had already come to her on that point. “ Maybe.”

Jenny stopped in front of the third victim. Her back to the detective as she talked. “ What type of coin was it?”

“ A nickel.”

Jenny glanced over at her. “ In all of them?”

Shannon nodded. “ Yes… None of the coins are the same date, none of them pressed at the same time, no forensic on it, in fact if anything it was too clean… like most of the unusable DNA in this case… but yes all of them a nickel.”

“ Placed in the mouth? At the same place?”

“ Yes under the tongue post mortem.”

Silence filled the room, Jenny moved from each victim then over to the notes, the detective sat back onto the chair and just waited, taking the time to just study the blonde at work; each frown, each movement. She found it fascinating to watch the woman in front of her, the way she moved from one point to another as if following some unseen thread. The fact Pete had taken evidence from the files and Jenny had noticed impressed Shannon , and as she watched now a new respect was forming.

Finally Jenny paused and sat down. “ I need the coins…”

Shannon nodded as she rose. “ They are on their way here now. I'll go meet them at the dock and bring them back.” She paused at the door.

Jenny looked up at her as she felt herself being watched. “What?”

Shannon looked nervous for a second. “ Don't take this the wrong way… but how did you know something was missing?”

Jenny tried to hide the smile as she sat back, instead she chewed the end of the pen. “ If I said I used my amazing magical powers would that answer you?”

For a second Shannon was about to take it as the answer and move on, then she caught the sparkle in the green eyes looking across at her. “ Well. I might but somehow I think your yanking my chain. Besides I get the feeling right about now you are just puffing up your chest at good ole Pete and saying bite me…”

Jenny scoffed and threw the pen down as she rose. “ I knew because none of what you showed me told me anything…'' She hit the photos on the wall each of them in turn. “ Each of these is just a calling card from this killer. To get attention, he has used the sheet and the pose to make sure you get it that it's the same killer each time. Nothing more then that, all the forensic work means nothing to him, that is his way of laughing at you.”

She turned so suddenly that Shannon actually stepped back.

“ This guy is good very good, and he is a puzzle maker, all of these are his clues but there weren't any… all the rest is for show. The sheet, the tooth, the sexual assaults, the killings… he wants to be noticed. In fact he wants to be so invincible he beats the system, the police, the CSI, the whole lot … but most of all he wants to beat whoever is called in on this… “ She swallowed to compose herself for a moment then looked over to the files and evidence box nodding her head at it. “Nothing in there showed me.”

Shannon eyes went to the victims, the evidence but she still couldn't see what Jenny was getting at. “Showed you what?”

Jenny looked up, her face serious. “ Who he wants to be.”

Shannon didn't understand, her eyes flicking from the pictures back to the psychic again. “ Who?” she resisted the urge to scratch her head like an idiot. “ Jenny, stop speaking code.” It was getting hard now to hold back her frustration.

Jenny sighed, rubbing her temples for a moment suddenly feeling very tired.

“ Each serial killer has an M.O… Whether it's psycho in nature or just plain come and catch me…an agenda. You know that even the basic cop does.”

Shannon nodded.

Jenny's eyes trailed to the wall of victims. “ But someone…” she paused, her eyes returning to the detective. “… Someone like this, that goes to all the trouble of moving bodies, killing with virtually no trace, performing post mortem injuries… or in three out of six cases rape. Taking such care and performance.” She swallowed. “ He hasn't just gone out and done this on the spur of the moment, it's all planned to every single detail and I mean every single one. Every inevitability, every scenario… for him to do this he needs to be known.” Her voice lost the emotion that had been building as she took in a long breath, turning back to the pictures. “ He sees himself as invincible, above laws, above getting caught. The fact he dumped two of the bodies in plain sight shows me that.” She turned her face to the detective.

“Someone that egotistical has to leave a calling card, it's in their nature, their only flaw if you want…” her eyes went sadly this time to the pictures. “They were nothing to him Shannon, nothing more than game pieces. Pawns on a board of life that he is creating…he controls their moves, he controls who is sacrificed….” She looked back over at the detective. Her eyes now almost transparent. “ So you see that's how I knew… there wasn't any bait laid out for all to see, a bait that said…. Here I am come and get me.”

Shannon had listened, and as she had, she slowly understood. She looked over the pictures again finally breaking her eyes from Jenny's, her stomach flipping at the thought that the victims had died for no reason other than a laid out plan. She let her eyes settle on the green ones looking at her sadly. “ Jesus.” She swallowed deeply getting under control at the disgust she suddenly felt. Her focus returned. “ You keep saying him?”

Jenny took along deep breath. “ Yes it's a he… there is just too much about all the things for it to be a female… this is a male physique. Surely even your profilers came up with that?” a wry smile pulled at her lips as she looked over at the detective.

Shannon answered it. “ Yes… we managed to come up with that on our own.”

Jenny let the smile hold on her mouth for a while longer in answer to the detectives. Then she looked away focusing on the faces on each picture again. “ You won't find a connection between the victims, because their isn't any… He choose them because of him … It could have been anything from a phone book to just sitting and watching them for weeks. The way they died is something that he probably tested, most likely on animals that couldn't be traced, maybe even a victim before, that either he let go afterwards, or he killed and deposed of the body not to be found… When he had the method that was the easiest to him to meet his plan he stayed with it.”

“ Forensic seems to think it was the pc3. Does that tie in with his profile?”

Jenny thought for a moment. “ Date rape drug?''

Shannon nodded. ‘'Amongst other things yes.''

‘' Yes that makes sense. Easiest thing to use for him. But he wouldn't have gone to clubs to use it. That's to open, he can't control the scenario there. But I wouldn't rule that area out as a testing place. I assume you've checked their food and drinks at their homes?''

Shannon nodded. ‘'We've checked into to it. Nothing so far.''

‘'The fact it's usual used for date rating, don't look anything into that, as I said he isn't into the mutilation it's just his calling card… it wouldn't surprise me if he didn't administer it after he had taken them. Another thing I'm getting about him is he doesn't really care if they feel pain either, why in two of the victims the tooth was removed while they were alive, he works to a timetable. The fact that the drug didn't work as quickly on those two meant nothing to him…and I doubt your going to find a reason why it didn't either. It was at his whim as to when he tortured them.”

Shannon exhaled, she really was finding it hard keeping her angry in about this killer. “ We have looked into the pharmacy and online outlets for the drug… so far there is a long list for us to check.” Shannon let out an exasperated sigh, what she was hearing wasn't meeting with any type of criminal she had ever come across before.

Jenny nodded again. “ I would imagine… look Shannon I'm not going to tell you how to run the investigation. Or even where to go and start for the forensic side… that's not what I do… you have very able bodied people on CSI team to break that down… what I do…” she paused. Then looked right at the detective to the point Shannon shivered. “ I'm here to get into his mind and show you him.”

Shannon looked up at the tone Jenny's voice fell to on the last part. It seemed strange to her, almost as if Jenny had just stepped out of the room and had whispered it from outside. “ You're talking about a main profile?”

“ Of sorts Yes… “ They looked at each other for a long moment both of them silently understanding that it was much more then that. Jenny broke eye contact first. “ Now, if you could get the coins. I can get to work.”

Shannon was about to ask more, but as Jenny turned away and walked towards the bedroom she realized she had just been dismissed.

Shannon took her time walking to the ferry port she knew it would take at least an hour for the evidence to arrive. She took the long route around checking out the beaches and finally she headed over to the safe house, making sure she wasn't followed. When she entered a six-foot amazon of woman met her as she closed the door.

“ Hey.” The dark haired mammoth put her gun back into the nape of her jeans at the back, flashing a big smile in recognition.

Shannon had to smile. “ Hey yourself… sorry to spook ya Jane.”

Jane shrugged, “ no probs boss, just wasn't expecting you this morning. Everything's all clear, Richard is down at the marine making himself known and checking out two boats that came in at five this morning… you want coffee?”

Shannon nodded as she followed her into the kitchen, she glanced over the living room seeing the surveillance equipment laid out on the coffee table.

“ Did you manage to set up the night cameras on the ridge above the house ok?”

Jane poured out two mugs and slid one over. “ Yea no problem at all. You were right the old tree up there is perfect, we now have full view of the guestroom exit, back of the house, kitchen, bathroom windows and the beach up to two hundred yards to the east. And a about one hundred yards to the north.”

Shannon sipped the coffee nodding as she pulled out the stool and sat. “ What about the west side.” She didn't have to ask about the south side, she already figured out that the sea was there best defense and at the same time their worst. At least with the back covered now with the camera she would only have to worry about someone coming in the beach way and front way unnoticed.

Jane added a dash of sweetener to the coffee. “ That's more of a problem there isn't anything there not even a phone pole to attach too. Richard came up with the bright idea to erect a tent there and just leave the camera hanging to it, what you think?”

“ Not very undercover, anyone could come across it.” Shannon smiled.

“ Yea that's what I told him, his answer was so what… could be someone bird watching.”

Shannon snorted.” On this place the only feathered friend I've seen is gulls.”

“ My point exactly,” she grinned. “ So tell me what she like?”

“ Who?” Shannon bit back the smile as Jane rolled her eyes.

“ Oh please spare me the innocent look… miss psychic… that's who.”

For a moment Shannon felt a surge of anger at the use of the word, then looking up she realized Jane didn't mean anything by it.

“ Intense.” Shannon sipped her coffee.

“ Oh I bet she is… so did she put the spooky on ya?”

Shannon answer was to pick up cracker from the plate and walk away into the living room.

“ Geesh, I hate it when you go all silent on me… have you any idea what it's like doing stake out with a guy who's idea of fun is sitting and picking his toes.”

As Shannon sat she let out a laugh, remembering Richards habits from old stakeouts. “ Come on Jane he isn't that bad compared to some.”

Jane looked sideways at her as she sat. “ Yea name one?”

“ Phillip.” Shannon bit into the remaining bit of cracker crunching it to nothing with a smug look on her face.

Jane cringed.” Oh god I'd forgotten him, what you have to remind me for…”

“ So I'd say picking toe nails, is a whole lot better then bad breath and breaking wind every time he moved.”

“Maybe.” Jane just grumbled as she sipped her coffee. Then she sat forward. “ So, what do you make of her? Is she psychic?”

Thinking for a moment Shannon paused, then looked over. “ I don't know, all I do know is she has had this case less then thirty six hours and already she has come up with a semi profile that makes sense on this guy.”

“ Do you believe in that stuff?” Jane shifted uncomfortably.

Shannon fixed her eyes on her. “ Do you?” suddenly she was curious to know.

Jane shrugged sitting back.” Can't say I do, and can't say I don't. I had an aunt who swore she could read tea leaves, and sometimes she would see things that did happen… But that just could have been her working stuff out and seeing where it was going end… to be honest Shan, I find this whole spooky shit to say the least a little unsettling…”

Both of them looked up when the door opened and Richard came in with an armful of bags. Jane rose to take them from him, he walked into the living room grinning as he caught sight of Shannon . “ Hey boss.”

“ Hey… What's the news on the boats?”

His face fell serious, he pulled a notebook from his back pocket, flicking it open as he spoke. “ One of them is a resident returning from a week trip, Mr. landaus, and his wife, everyone recognized them and no unknown passengers. The other one is a cruise boat it makes the trip once a week stays over until the afternoon then continues. Five passengers on board, and three crew. I faxed the list to prescient for checking, but it leaves at two this afternoon and I'll check to make sure all passengers are on board, Simon is watching at the moment, under the guise of getting his board waxed.” He laughed, a laugh, which turned his forty-year-old face back for a moment into a teenager.

Shannon chuckled at the image. “ Any other new arrivals?”

Richard nodded his thanks to Jane as she brought him a coffee then he turned back to Shannon . “ Nope. So how is it staying with some one that can read your mind?”

Shannon felt her hackles rise again. “ She doesn't read minds.”

Richard looked up sharply as he caught the tone. “ Ok… “ He looked over at Jane in question, who just shrugged at him.

Shannon finished the last of her coffee. Walking to the door, placing the empty mug on the bar as she passed. “ I'll check in at four, if anything comes up let me know.”

With that she nodded and head out the door, leaving two detectives looking after her then each other in surprise.

Shannon wasn't sure why she was so mad as she stomped along the beach, maybe it was the fact Jenny had explained, people formed opinions on her. As she took the path down towards the port she realized the reason she was anger was she didn't like it. Now what was on her mind as she made her way through the small dock area was, why the hell should she care? She had known the woman less then three days.

When she reached the ferry port she leant back against the railing and turned her mind over to the policewoman inside, looking around at each of the inhabitances as they passed along the key. Most were dressed in full summer attire of people on vacation, as she turned her head she spotted Simon along the edge of the quayside of the far side, his surf board laid out in front of him. She had to smile at the sight of the thirty-year-old dressed out in a ridiculous yellow palm tree shirt and shorts. But she had to admit his sandy hair and tousled look made him the perfect beach bum. They made eye contact briefly, but to anyone passing no one would have noticed.

Once she was sure she had the lay of the land, she made her way to the market to shop, her stomach was already complaining in the fact she hadn't eaten properly in two days. After about twenty minutes she came out three bags in hand, stopping at then bakery briefly to pick up a few anish as an after thought she made her way back to the ferry port to wait. Shannon turned her head as she heard the ferry horn sound, rising to meet it, she suddenly got the feeling someone was watching her. She stopped, turning her head fully right to gaze at the beachfront. When she couldn't see anyone she looked to the left, watching three or four people just going on their business, after a few minutes of scanning the area she shrugged walking now to meet the ferry.

Jenny was falling, that was the only way she could explain it to the sane part of her brain. She took long gulps of air as she sat on the edge of her bed, calming all the torrents battering her thoughts. Everything turned inward, each memory flash robbed her sane mind of its defense, its understanding, none of it reminded, all that stood was fear. Inside she whimpered at the bombardment of everything, she tried to close down her external senses, locking out the world, after about ten minutes she got her breathing under control. Slowly bit by bit she began to reform the walls that had just crashed around her. Time and space returned to normal, leaving the vapor trail haze of the past in her mind.

The panic attack had caught her by surprise one minute she was closing the door on the detective and moving to sort through some clothes that needed washing, the next she was on bed, and then crashed to the floor in a corner curled into a ball. Finally into her brain the faint scratch of Buddy at the door told her she would have to move. Using all her mental strength she pulled herself up, with shaking steps she opened the door letting the upset dog into the room. Almost at once her senses locked onto the unconditional love that radiated off of him as he came over sniffing around her hands for attention. His whimpers and whines filtered into the noise of rushing of blood in her ears, until that too began to fade.

“ Shh, it's ok boy… I'm ok.”

He whimpered unsure, still making a fuss around her legs, rubbing his long coat against her. Making her way to the bed she sat and welcomed his presence as he sat in front of her, brown eyes gazing up in question.

“ Scared ya did I?” The hoarseness in her voice surprised her for a second. She rubbed the side of his ear.

“ Arwooff.” His head moved into the caress.

“ Me too.” Her voice was an almost whisper, but he heard it and he made sure to snuggle closer.

Shannon had picked up the package and was headed back along the beach, she couldn't shake the feeling as she drew nearer the beach house that something was wrong, she increased her strides till she was now almost at a light jog. As the house came into view noticed that the dog was no where to be seen. A sudden feeling of high anxiety took over, she dropped the bags by the fence and pulled her gun running into the house, only to find herself falling backwards with a mass of squirming growling dog on her chest. She landed with a crack and a curse. “ God damn it Bud it's me… Jesus.”

Almost at once the weight left her chest, she sat up to see the wagging tail of the dog disappear back into the house.

Jenny appeared at the door. “ You ok?”

Shannon was about to yell the fact that she certainly was not, when she looked up and her words froze, concern replaced the anger she felt. Taking a breath she rose, replacing her gun back into the holster on her sock. Rising she brushed the sand from her back and butt. “ Think I should be asking you that question.” She watched as Jenny pushed herself away from the door frame, noting for the first time that Jenny hadn't been leaning against it, more like holding on to it. When she didn't answer and simple turned and walked back into the house. Shannon concern began to rise. She followed. “ Hey... did something happen while I was gone?” she didn't make the same mistake twice by reaching for her as she walked away, instead she lent against the doorframe. Well aware that Bud was watching her every move. When no answer came she tried again. “ Jenny did something happen?”

Jenny was bent over the fridge pulling out a coke. “ No.”

Shannon took a long deep breath realizing the psychic had fallen back into the ice maiden and one word answer girl. “ Right.” She let the word hang on her tongue as she exhaled.

Jenny popped the tab and took a long sip. “ Right what?”

“ So mind explaining to me why Bud knocked me on my arse when I tried to come in here?” she looked over to the dog, who once again was giving her the innocent look, of who me.

Jenny gazed over at the dog and smiled. “ He was protecting me, you were running in here with a gun…” as an after thought she looked over to the detective. “ Why were you running in here with a gun drawn? Is there something I should be worried about? “ she bit back the panic that was filtering back.

Shannon shifted for a moment realizing Jenny had turned the tables on her again with the questions. “ That's really annoying you know?”

“ What is?” Jenny took another sip of the coke and choose the chair nearest to Buddy. She needed to be grounded right now, and the emotions that were cascading off the detective where starting to give her a headache on top of the one she already had.

“ Never mind… I got worried when I came close to the house, the door was wide open and no sign of the hell hound.”

Bud looked up at the name and “ arrrofffed.” At it.

Shannon just sent him over a smirk.

Jenny studied her for a long moment, suddenly feeling as if the detective wasn't telling the truth, noticing that the woman avoided looking at her.

“ Well Bud is trained to disarm anyone with a gun near me.”

Shannon raised an eyebrow, then looked at the dog again. “ Well that could be a problem because at some point if there is threat to you I will have to be armed, and I can't see that helping when every time I draw my weapon I'm getting treated to my butt hitting the ground and my eyes seeing stars.”

The laugh that came to Shannon 's ears made her look away from the dog she was trying to out stare. Looking over at Jenny actually laughing melted any anger still left in her.

Jenny cleared her throat of the laugh, looking over to see the detective eyebrows raised. “ Sorry, I just got this image of him flattening you every time you reach for your sock.” She relaxed slightly welcoming the warmth that laughter brought to her.

Shannon scratched her head, half laughing at the image herself. “ Yea well we are going to have to work on that.” Her eyes softened. “ You have a beautiful laugh.” As soon as the words were out of her mouth she could have kicked herself.

Jenny just looked over at her somewhat shyly. “ Thank you.” The comment hadn't caught her off guard, the emotions off the detective had warned her what was coming, but still she wasn't prepared for the emotions it started inside of her. She blushed slightly then turned her attention to the coke can in her hand.

Blue eyes studied her for a moment then looked away. “ Damn I left the groceries outside be right back.”

Jenny just smiled, her eyes following the retreating form of the detective, she took the excuse for what it was, a simple breathing space for the exiting woman to regroup her emotions. She didn't need to be a psychic to know that Shannon had just given away something with the comment she hadn't meant too. As she watched the figure disappear, her smile changed suddenly liking the fact that the detective could get unsettled so quickly, in fact she was being to find it endearing.

Shannon virtually ran out of the house, mentally she was slapping her forehead, muttering to herself as she walked to retrieve the bags. “ Stupid, stupid, stupid.” Taking a deep breath as she bent to pick the bags up, checking the evidence bag was still safely tucked inside the third one. Mentally smacking her self again at the fact she had just let the evidence out of her sight. Closing her eyes she calmed herself, moving now back towards the house. “ Get a grip Shannon .” Was the last thing muttered under her breath before she put on a smile and went back inside.

When the detective handed over the evidence bag, Jenny at once began looking over it. After five minutes of standing there being ignored Shannon realized this was one of those times the psychic wouldn't have noticed a bomb going off around her. Once again Shannon found herself watching the psychic work, fascinated as the blonde unwrapped the new clues as if they were precious gems.

Shannon 's gaze shifted, this time taking in the woman herself. As her eyes ran over the figure before her a thought entered her head, the report on the attack had said Jennifer had been badly scarred. Her focus changed to the long sleeved shirt that was rolled neatly at each elbow. Her gaze shifted again, taking in the tanned skin there, arms muscular but feminine, her eyes dipped following one prominent vein that ran down to the right hand that held an evidence bag. Nimble hands she thought. Beautiful hands, hands of an artist. Her eyes moved up again, to the bowed head, watched as Jenny tucked a loose hair behind her ear, noticing the psychic was so engrossed she didn't even notice she had done it. A smile pulled at the corner of the detective's mouth. Shannon 's eyes shifted this time to the pulse point on the psychics neck, watching it for a few heartbeats as is rippled the skin into movement. Shannon blinked as she felt her own heart rate pick up. Refocusing she let her eyes dip until they hit the collar of the blue shirt and travel over the high ridge of the fabric down to the V of the opening, until she caught the edge of the twin curve of breasts. Shannon blinked, her eyes snapping up as she suddenly realized what she was doing. She swallowed slightly, then decided she really needed something to do, and now.

“ I'm … I'm going to unpack the bags ok?”

Jenny nodded without even looking up.

Shannon moved quickly towards to the kitchen stopping when she realized the dog had been watching her the whole time, and now was sitting up panting at her. He tilted his head almost in question.

Shannon narrowed her eyes at him. “ Oh shut up… smartass.”

His answer was to snort and shake himself out, sending drool in all directions.

Shannon grimaced. “ That's so gross.” Then she busied her self-unpacking the groceries, taking the time to get the layout of the kitchen and cupboards and where things belonged.

Only when the detective was out of sight did Jenny allow herself to look up. Taking a long breath as she unclenched her hand from the corner of the desk. At first she had missed the fact the detective was looking at her, she was too engrossed in the evidence, it was only the jolt of something else that had smashed into her senses, arousal. It had taken a lot to stop herself looking up. But she didn't, she knew for one that that would cause a situation she was no where near ready to confront, and two it would have embarrassed the hell out of the detective. Her eyes flicked to the kitchen, when she was sure that Shannon wasn't going to come back in she calmed once again with a breath, just as she was about to turn her attention back to the evidence she noticed Bud sitting up and almost smirking over at her.

Jenny narrowed her eyes. “ She's right… you are a smartass.”

“Arroff.” Bud sneezed.

Jenny decided silence was her best defense and picked up the first labeled evidence bag.

After twenty minutes Shannon had finished and poked her head into the living room, only to find the psychic totally engrossed in tag bag under the micro scanner. Shannon decided to let her be and get down to some work of her own. Food.

Jenny looked up as she felt the table nudge, blinking her eyes into normal focus as she removed the magnify goggles.

“ Here drink this.” Shannon stood holding out a coffee.

As the psychic moved to take it she winced, realizing her back was stiff from bending. She stretched it out then took the coffee. “ Thanks.” She took a sip, then sniffed, then again this time her attention went to the air around, she drew in deeper long inhale . “ Oh my god what is that?” Her face lit up.

Shannon grinned as she sat in the rocker by the window. “ Food.”

Jenny looked over at her in surprise. “ You cooked?”

“ Yes I cooked.” The detective smirked as she took a sip of wine.

“ How? When?” Jenny looked over at the clock above the fire, her eyes widening slightly, turning back to the detective after she checked with her wristwatch. “ Four hours, I've been working for four hours?”

Shannon gave a slow nod, she was dying of curiosity and her first thought when she brought the coffee was to find out how the psychic was doing. But as soon as the blonde looked up she realized how tired she looked, she put her questions away for now.

Taking a long sigh, Jenny stretched out her back again then sat back, cradling the coffee cup in both hands. “ Thank you for cooking.”

“ Who said I did any for you.” Shannon bit her lip as the blondes' head snapped up in alarm. She couldn't hold it so she laughed. “ Yes I'm feeding you geesh.” She started to rise then looked over a little embarrassed. “ You didn't mind that I cooked do you… maybe I should have asked first?”

Jenny shook her head. “ Don't be silly… I think you've learnt by now that when I'm into something time doesn't exist, and if you want to survive you got to fend for yourself.”

Shannon smiled, as she headed to the kitchen. “ Ok you go take a bath and soak your back for a while and I'll have it ready when you are ok?”

Finishing the coffee Jenny nodded. “ God it could use it, I hate it when I hunch…” her eyes looked over to the detective. “ You sure? Isn't there anything I can help with?”

Shannon shook her head. “ Nope go, it's ok I got to check in anyway… make sure everything's ok. Dinner will be ready in about thirty minutes… go soak.” She motioned her head to the bathroom.

Jenny let out a long sigh, pausing for a moment before heading towards the bathroom, she stopped at the door, peeking her head around into the kitchen. “ I really could get used to having a cook around you know.” Her voice was teasing.

Shannon 's answer was to throw a Tea towel at the now empty space of the doorway, hearing the chuckle fade away as the bathroom door was closed.

While Jenny took her bath, Shannon slipped out of the house, first she did a long perimeter walk of the area, noting in her mind again any boats off shore. Last she checked in with the safe house. Relieved that no new visitors had come to the island and all on board the cruise had left on it when it departed.

By the time she had returned the timer on the oven was beeping for attention. Walking past the bathroom door Shannon smiled as she heard the sounds of humming. “ Dinner in five.” She moved back to the kitchen, hearing the muffled. “ Ok.”

Ten minutes later found them both sat down to dinner. Shannon watched the psychics eyes nearly pop out of her head she unveiled the two main dishes.

“ I remembered the no meat policy, so this one is stuffed peppers, celery rice and tomatoes.” She tapped the other dish. “ And this is aubergine with carrots and wild mushrooms… I should have checked first that you liked most of this, but I took a chance… I … well I hope I was right.”

Jenny's answer was to scoop one spoon full of each onto her plate and send a big grin over.

Shannon let out a mental sigh of relief. Then began filling her plate.

Taking her first bite Jenny savored it before sipping the white wine. “ Thank you… its … well its delicious.”

Shannon nodded, shrugging.” I like to cook and like you having someone to cook for makes a difference.”

Jenny's eyes came up, the wineglass pausing for only an instant on the way to her mouth before she took a drink.” You don't have anyone to cook for?”

Shannon for a second stopped chewing, then continued. “ Nope. I live alone.”

“Ah.” Jenny took another mouthful.

Blue eyes twinkled as she looked over at the bowed head, slowly she sipped her drink before dropping her eyes to her own plate and continued to eat.

For a while nothing was said, just the sound of two people enjoying a meal.

Eyes met occasionally and then dropped.

Shannon sat back, wondering if now was a good time to bring up the coins, but she was weary she knew what happened the night before when she broached the question. After thinking for a moment she chose a different track. “ If I say I'd like to ask a question are you going to yell at me again?”

Jenny looked right at her as she cleared the food in her mouth with a last chew. “ Depends on the question?”

Shannon ran her tongue over her teeth, thinking. “ Ok lets say it's a question about your talent… is that off limits?”

Jenny's head tilted slightly as she studied the detective, trying to gauge where this was going. “ No… not off limits but I may decided not to answer.”

“Ok... Fair enough… how old were you when you knew there was something there?” blue eyes looked at her in genuine question.

Jenny felt herself relax, as she realized Shannon was curious, rather then trying to figure her out. “ Nine.”

Shannon 's eyes shot up from her plate. “ Nine!”

“ Yep.” The psychic popped a slice of aubergine in her mouth.


Jenny chuckled.

“ How did you? I mean what?” Shannon shut up, sitting back. “ ok this is harder than I thought here.”

Jenny placed her fork down and took up the glass, also sitting back, actually liking the fact the detective was once again at a loss for words. Then she decided to lend the woman a hand. “ I think the words you are looking for are, when did you start seeing and feeling things that no body else did Jenny, and how did those things manifest themselves to a nine year old.” Jenny couldn't help the smirk.

Shannon quickly realized she was being teased yet again, she relaxed back. “ Yep to what you said.”

Jenny laughed, she pushed the plate forward then wiped her mouth onto the napkin. “ If this is going to be a question sessions I want a chair that doesn't make my ass go numb, lets do this in the living room ok.” She rose taking her glass of wine with her.

Shannon eyes at that moment dropped to the numb part of the departing anatomy, briefly wondering when thick cotton bathroom robes that had seen better days became alluring. Her eyes snapped up when she realized the psychic had stopped and was just smiling at her.

“ Sorry what?” Shannon pushed the chair back to rise.

“ I said do you want a brandy, I have some around here somewhere?”

“ No I'll stick to wine, technically I'm on duty.”

Jenny shrugged then made her self comfortable on the leather couch by the unset fire. Shannon chose the chair opposite.

“So?” the detective waited.

“ When I was nine years old I saw my best friend killed by a car.”

Shannon 's eyes shot over to her, she total wasn't expecting that. “ Shit.”

“ Yea shit…” taking a sip of wine Jenny continued. “ The thing is I saw it when I was twenty miles away playing in the back yard with my brother.” She tentivly looked across to see the reaction.

Shannon blinked for a moment, her eyes not focused anywhere as she thought. Finally they came back to focus on her.” You saw it as it happened?”

Jenny slowly nodded, her eyes were still locked on the blue ones opposite.

Shannon shifted, then scratched her head. “ Damn that must have been hard to see and understand…What happened, I mean when you told someone?”

Jenny stiffened slightly, but made herself relax. “ I was told not to talk about it, especially around my friends parents or outside of the house.”

“Just like that.”

Jenny took a longer sip of wine, leaning forward to pour some more. “ Yep just like that.”

“ So they didn't believe you or what?”

Jenny shrugged. “ Actually I think they did, they just didn't know how to handle it…”

“ Were there others things like that?”

“ Small things, finding lost jewelry, seeing my grandmother fall in town one day when I was a school… nothing as big as the accident though.”

“ How did you handle it?”

Jenny looked across suddenly curious. “ Do you believe I saw those things?”

Blues eyes jumped up. “ Me?… I… I … I didn't know you then.”

Jenny didn't realize how much the detective not believing her would actually hurt. Taking a deep breath she smiled over. “ Don't worry its no biggy.”

But as soon as Shannon had said the words she saw that it was a biggy, in fact she watched as the green eyes that had been open to her all evening got the vacant look again. “ I'm a doubting Thomas remember.” Shannon added a small smile, relieved when the psychics eyes focused on her again and returned the smile.

“ So you are… ok next question?”

Relieved Shannon sat back again. “ What did your parents do about it?”

“ Mostly they ignored it, they made it plain to me that I wasn't to discuss it outside of the house or talk to anyone else about it… which I didn't for a very long time.”

Shannon just nodded, her lips formed the next question when Jenny sat forward interrupting.

“ I think its only fair if I get a question here too?”

Shannon raised one eyebrow. “ Sure?”

“ Why the police department?”

Shannon relaxed almost scoffing. “ No big secret on that one. My dads a cop, my older brother is, we are all descendent from my great grandfather the original officer of the law. Our family is either fire or police. It's the logical way for our Irish blood to go, it keeps us out of trouble working within the law.”

Jenny laughed, feeling the warmth come off the detective as she spoke of her family. For a moment she felt a tinge of sadness at not having that growing up, she mentally shook it off. “ And you didn't want to do something else other than follow tradition?”

The detective shook her head. “ Nope for as long as I can remember I've wanted to be one. I like it and I'm very good at what I do.”

“ Oh I bet you are.” Although the words were an almost whisper Jenny realized they were heard as two blue orbs jumped to her, Jenny flushed and quickly took another drink, lowering her eyes.

Shannon decided to let that one go. Although a smile tugged at her mouth as she too took a drink. The beeping from her pocket broke the silence, Shannon rose pulling the handset free. “ Rhimes.”

“ Hey boss, just checking in, clear on all points. Simon is doing the West Side tonight and Tully is over on the east.”

“ Ok I'm here if there's any problems before next call in at eleven contact me.”

“ Will do. Nite boss.”

“ Night Jane.”

Shannon placed the set back in her pocket, smiling apologetically as she sat.

“ where were we?”

“ Your question.” Jenny nodded at the detective.

“ What does it feel like?”

Jenny paused on putting her glass down on the coffee table, looking up, surprise on her face showing the fact she totally wasn't expecting that. “ Back then or now?” she sat back, pulling the robe over her bare legs.

“ Then?” Shannon deliberately kept her eyes from dropping to the sudden flash of skin.

“ It scared the living crap out of me.”

Shannon was about to laugh when she saw that the psychic wasn't kidding. “ Really?”

Jenny exhaled. “ How the hell do you think it felt, one minute I'm playing in the sand pit with my brother the next I'm looking through my best friends eyes as she watches her father go through the windscreen of the damn car. Then watch as the back seat smashed into my face.”

Shannon sat back caught off guard by the anger, she waited, expecting the woman opposite to jump up and head off to the bedroom. Instead she watched as the psychic got herself under control and look up at her with old memories of tears in the corner of her eyes.

“ It fucking sucked Shannon believe me, there wasn't anything nice or good about it to a nine year old. In fact there still isn't at times.”

Shannon wanted to say something that would make a difference right then, but all she came up with was. “ I'm sorry.”

“ For?” Jenny looked at her hard, expecting to find pity.

“ Having to go through it.”

Green eyes studied her for a moment, then Jenny simply nodded. “ I've gotten used to it… it took along time for me to control what I see, but I can now, I can virtually choose the where and how. At the beginning I couldn't, and believe me that was worse.”

Shannon stayed silent. Then took a drink. “ Your question?”


The detective grinned. “ Your turn.”

Jenny relaxed again, looking right at the detective till the point the woman shifted in her seat. “ Why do you live alone?”

This time it was Shannon who blinked in surprise. “ Well… I have a demanding job.”

Jenny frowned, not believing that for one minute.

“ Okayyyy… I guess I don't make time for relationships… and I'm a bitch to be around.”

Jenny scowled.

Shannon laughed. “ Geesh ok.. Ok… I haven't met the right person to settle on or to really try in a relationship with. Will that do?”

Jenny grinned. “ For now yes.”

Shannon snorted. Still grinning she looked over. “ So why aren't you in one?”

Jenny's smile faltered, her voice dropping. “ Its very hard to be that close to someone.”

This time Shannon frowned. “ Why?”

Jenny looked up. “ That's two questions.”

“Humor me you can have the next two… so why?”

Sighing Jenny shifted. “ Being that close to someone can be very … well very annoying for the other person.”

Shannon shook her head not understanding.

“ When I'm around people I can pick up on emotions… strong emotions.”

Jenny waited, when she saw Shannon begin to figure it out, she waited.

“ You… you can read what I'm feeling?” Shannon shifted, suddenly nervous.

Jenny closed her eyes preparing herself for what she knew always came next. “ Yes… especially people who have very open emotions… like now, you're nervous and uncomfortable.”

Shannon jumped up. “ Don't do that.”

“Now you are getting angry at Me.” The psychics voice now had fallen into total non-emotion.

Shannon spun back. “ I asked you to stop that.”

Jenny closed herself down to the emotions around. She stood and walked past the detective heading towards the bedroom, pausing just before she entered the doorway. Her back to the detective as she spoke. “ Now you have your answer to the question… People don't like to know that I can feel what they feel. Try being in a relationship when you can sense the person you love has just been unfaithful to you, or lied to your face.” She paused as her voice broke, her head turning over her shoulder, her eyes staring right at the pacing detective who had now stopped to face her. “ Try being around someone like me… even if they don't cheat or lie, every time they are wondering if I'm intruding into their emotions detective, even when you tell them you didn't. Just like you are, right this minute, feeling like I have just violated you.” With one last sad look, she walked into the room and closed the door.

Shannon just stared at the door, underneath she was angry as hell that the whole time she had been in the psychic's company she was being read like a damn book. On the surface she realized Jenny had been right she did feel like her mind had been violated. She lifted the half glass of wine and drained it. Her eyes flicking to the door as she started to pace again. Buds whining drew her attention away, he had at some point moved to sit next to her. She stared at him for a long moment then finally sat, letting her hand move up and across his fur.

“ She shouldn't have done that.”

He “wrufft.” Up at her.

“ Was that a yes or a no?”

He nudged her with his nose. His eyes went over to the door then back up to her, letting out a small whines again.

Shannon let out a long drawn out sigh, her eyes this time flicking to the door. “ Yea.” Her gaze dipped to the dog again.

Finally she rose heading to the kitchen, to keep herself busy she started to wash up the mess in the sink. The whole time her brain was consumed with questions. The first one was, why wasn't she walking out the door right now?

Jenny sat in darkness, her legs pulled under her as she listened for the slamming door telling her that the detective had left. When after ten minutes it still hadn't come, Jenny convinced herself the woman had left via the guesthouse after packing her things. She didn't blame her, how could she. It was a violation of sorts to read some ones private emotions. She wiped the tears off her cheek with the palm of her hand and sat back, pulling the old bed cover over her. It had long ago lost the scent of her childhood and mother but it still held a different kind of safety. At first when she entered her room she was surprised buddy hadn't followed, but she realized that her dog had sensed the detectives distress was where he was needed. She wished she could have gone back a half an hour and simply refused the questions, but that only meant this moment would have been put off. Sighing she rolled over, her eyes focused on the line at the bottom of the door. When the gentle tap came she sat bolt right up.

“ Yea… yes?” her heart started thumping in her chest as she realized Shannon had stayed.

“ I…. I know I'm not allowed in there, so to save my butt hitting the ground and Bud taking a piece out of me, I … well could you come back out here so we can… well I'd like to talk.” The detective's voice was unsure.

Jenny swallowed the huge lump in her throat.

“ Jenny?”

“ Ok... Give me a minute.”

“ Kay.”

Jenny's eyes dipped to the light at the bottom of the door again seeing the shadow move away. It took move then a few minutes to calm her self she was still reeling that the detective hadn't just walked out on her. Finally she willed her legs to move, when she opened the door she had to blink to get used to the light. Shannon was sitting by the rocker at the window her eyes gazing outside at the beach. Jenny wasn't quite sure where to sit so she took leather couch again, noticing as she pasted the kitchen that it was clean.

“ Thank you washing up… I should have done it you cooked.” It was lame and Jenny knew it.

Finally Shannon turned her gaze to her. “ I needed to think.”

“Oh.” Jenny sat.

Silence hung in the air like an anvil of lead. Shannon 's gaze was fixed out at the beach again. “ Do you read my emotions all the time?” she didn't turn her head as she asked, and her voice was low.

Jenny looked up from her hands. “ No.”

This time Shannon 's eyes moved to her and held the stare. Then they went back to the sea. “ How can you not?”

Jenny swallowed, part of her couldn't believe the fact Shannon was actually giving her a chance to explain and understand. “ I have learnt over the years to mentally erect walls around myself… it's hard to explain… but it shuts out all the vibes as it were.”

Shannon 's eyes lowered from the sea to the floor. “ You said some are easier to read…like me right?”

“ Yes.” Jenny swallowed.

“ What do you mean by that?” Shannon answered defensively, feeling her hackles rise again.

“ You control what you show people, keep your emotions out of facial expressions, you don't react without thinking. But to me that means you… well it means you make your internal emotions stronger, so when you do react it comes out fast and intense… and when you do. “ She swallowed. “ Well when you do open, it's totally.”

Shannon returned her eyes to the sea, but she really wasn't looking at it, her mind was still caught up in the information she was hearing. It some small place she actually thought it funny that Jenny called her an open book. She could hear the voices now of all the partners in her life calling her an ice bitch that showed nothing.

Jenny eyes never left the detective, watching for any sign of what the stilled figure was thinking. She waited.

“ So when you read me you didn't mean too?”

Jenny let out a held breath. “ Yes exactly… I wasn't prepared for it. But as soon as I realized I had I erected the walls… but being around you more and more catches me off guard… I … well…. You.” She paused.

Two crystal chips of blue eyes swung around. “ I what?”

Jenny's answer a whisper. “ I didn't expect you to be this open with me.”

Shannon frowned, as she thought. “ That makes it harder?”

“ Gods yes… I lose the wall around me because I let it down…I don't know that I am… it happens then boom its too late when I realize I've just picked up on your emotions.”

Again silence reined, only the ticking clock merging with the sound of the distant sea.

“ So your saying it was a mistake?”

Jenny took a small breath. “ Yes.” All her insides were saying was. “ Please don't leave.”

Shannon returned her eyes outside. Silence again followed, then into the silence a low voice broke. “ So how can that be a violation?”

Jenny's eyes jumped over to the almost silhouetted figure in the rocker. “ It's how you feel isn't it?”

Shannon gave a long sigh as she rose, moving back into the light of the now lit candles, for a breath she hovered on the other side of the room, then making her mind up she strided to the couch and sat. “ Yea I did… but I thought about It.” Her face was looking at the floor.

Jenny studied her, her eyes searching. “ And truthfully you don't now?”

Shannon took another breath. “ I can't say I like it, but no I don't feel like you violated me Jenny. Just, well your right I keep my emotions closed, I have to in my work and I guess it filtered over into my personal life…” her eyes rose. “ You asked me why I was alone… I guess the simply answer is I don't know how to show someone how I feel…”

Jenny widened in surprise. “ You're kidding?”

Shannon smiled self-consciously. “ No… and when you kinda read me like an open book it scared the crap out of me, so I guess your magic ain't up to scratch…” Jenny dipped her face, Shannon lowered her head to look at it. “ Or did you pick up on that?”

Jenny finally looked up with a busted look on her face.

This time Shannon laughed. “ Well I take back the part about your magic needing repairs.”

Jenny sat back, needing for a moment to distance herself, she erected a full wall. Well aware the hurt child of the past inside her was gleaming at the fact Shannon called what she had magic. No one had before.

The detective blinked as she felt something touch her skin for a moment, looking down she noticed the hairs on her arms standing. Intrigued she focused back on the woman in front her, looking at her more closely. “ You're doing the wall thingy now right.” Her voice was curious now.

Jenny nodded, her eyes coming up to meet the blue ones now studying her, “ Yes…” she paused. “ Answer me this… You don't find this at all uncomfortable now you know I can do this? Read your emotions.”

Shannon scratched her neck. “ Hell ya...'but to be honest I've been thinking and it could be a hell of a lot worse… Jesus you could read my mind.” Her eyes darted to the psychics sharply. “ You can't do that right? Just to clarify.”

Jenny snorted. “ No... I have enough problems with the extra senses I do have thank you very much.”

Shannon sat back with dramatic effect wiped her brow. “ Phew.”

Jenny couldn't help but smile. “ Thank you for trying to understand Shannon .”

Shannon sat forward. “ I can't promise I'm not going to react the way I did if it… well when it happens again but yea I think I understand it better now… actually after I got over the, well the um, main reaction.” She grinned. “ I started to think about it, I mean you keep asking me if I believe what you do and here I was reacting like I believed you. So kinda makes that point slightly mute doesn't.” she gave a lopsided grin.

Jenny smiled as she watched the detective scratch her neck again, noting that down on the list of endearing things that was growing. Realizing the woman was nervous again she nodded. “ Well you believe I can read emotions so I guess that's a good start on the other things.”

“ Are you reading me again?” Shannon 's tone wasn't angry, just curious.

Jenny exhaled. “No. And to save you asking all the time I promise I won't and I mean it. So as hard as it is to believe. Please try.” She swallowed, it suddenly became very important that Shannon did.

“ That's what you meant on the relationship thing wasn't it, the non trust thing?” Shannon rubbed her hands together, needing something to focus on.

“ Yes.”

“ Is that…. Is that how you saw things with those cases?”

Jenny stiffened, she didn't want to do this now. “ No.”

Shannon looked over at her. “ How?”

Letting out a long sigh Jenny sat back rubbing at her temple. “ You really want to do this now?”

The detective was dying with curiosity, but she saw the blank look coming into the psychic's eyes. “ Can I take a rain check on it?” she added a hopeful smile. When Jenny didn't answer she decided on something she did know, seeing the psychic needed a break and if truth be told so did she. Not waiting for an answer she rose clearing her throat. “ Well I think I've been pretty patience on the coins, how about you tell me what you found out?”

Jenny let the lead weight of dread go that had encircled her lungs from the moment she had stepped over the line with the detective, totally relieved things were back to semi normal she stood, gratefully aware the woman in front of her had just backed off. “ Ok, and yes you have… come on.”

With that she headed into the den, with a detective fast on her heels.

Shannon waited, pulling one of the side chair closer to the desk so she now faced the psychic. Jenny was sorting out three of her torn pages of notes, taking a pencil from the pen pot she started chewing the edge, when she was sure had everything in the order, she sat. Pushing her reading glasses higher up her nose she faced the waiting detective. “ Your lab isn't going to find anything on these, no hidden scratched messages, no invisible ink, and no useable forensic, no matter how long they go over it.”

Shannon stayed silent, waiting.

“ That's not how this guy works. As I said he is a puzzle maker.” Taking a breath Jenny passed over all of the six bags containing the coins. “ Tell me what you see?”

Shannon took them looking over each in turn, then frowning she looked up. “ Six nickels.”

Jenny rolled her eyes. “ I know that… what do all of them have in common?”

This time Shannon let her gaze fall onto each of them. Still not sure she just said what she saw. “ Six nickels, Thomas Jefferson's head, in god we serve, the year of make… Liberty .” She looked over unsure, Jenny just nodded her head to continue. She turned the bags over to see the other side of the coins. Letting out an exasperated sigh she continued. “ Monticello his residence.. United States of America . Five cents.” She squinted so see better through the plastic bag. “ E… E Plur … Pluribus.. Unum…whatever the hell that is…” she looked up briefly. “ Damn never noticed that before what is that Latin?”

Jenny grinned, then sat forward. “ Yep.. Wanna know what it means.”

Shannon just rolled her eyes. “ Well as your dying to tell me.”

“ Out of many, one.”

Shannon frowned, feeling like that should mean something. “ Ok.”

The blonde laughed. “ Don't worry I didn't know it either I did a google.”

Shannon just looked at her, then back at the bags, before looking looked up with total confusion on her face. “ So?”

Jenny taped the bags with the edge of the chewed pencil end. “ That my dear detective is what was missing from all the other evidence… that is his calling card.”

Shannon blinked then looked down at each coin again. “ So the leaving the money after the tooth was taken has nothing to do with the tooth fairy fable?”

Jenny shook her head. “ No, and if anything he is laughing at the whole connection the press have made…” when Jenny looked up to meet the blue eyes study her, her face grew serious. “ He's dangerous Shannon , very dangerous, and I don't just mean because of the six he has killed, he thinks he has been picked. If you like, chosen…”

“ By god?” Shannon swallowed as the image of another religious nut entered her head.

“ No… there is nothing to say he is a nut.”

Shannon 's eyes snapped up suddenly angry. For a second Jenny didn't understand why, then it dawned on her, she kept her voice calm. “ I didn't read your thoughts Shannon , I can't do that remember.”

Shannon 's anger quickly vanished. Taking a deep breath she turned her attention to the coins again, but not before mumbling. “ Sorry.”

“ Excepted… I know it will take time for you to trust what I said.” Jenny kept the small smile on her face for as long as it took the detective to finally look up at her with her own sheepish smile on her face. Then the psychic turned her attention back to the coins. “ As I was saying he's dangerous for so many reasons. He thinks he's invincible for one, but the main one he thinks he is smarter then anyone on this earth.”

“ If he thinks that then why bother playing with us like this.” Shannon threw down the bags in disgust.

Jenny shrugged. “ Because he needs to know he is… as much this is test of us this is a test for him… to see if he passes.”

Shannon looked sideways at her. “ You sure he isn't into religion, because they sure sounds like cult bullshit?”

“ No… he is above that.”

Shannon blinked, suddenly getting an uneasy feeling. “ Above god?”

“ Yep… he thinks he is.” Jenny's eyes dipped to the coins again. “ What else do you see?”

Shannon once again went back to the coins. “ Coins… um nickel… date… star…” finally she shrugged looking up. “ Sorry that's it.”

Jenny nodded. “ That's all I could see, was driving me nuts, well till you saved me and brought coffee.” She smiled.

Shannon returned it, then sat back. “ So what does it tell you?

Jenny pushed her glasses back up. Looking over to Shannon sadly. ‘'That he hasn't finished killing yet… because this is only the first pieces of the puzzle.”

“ I knew that Jenny… now tell me something I don't know?” Shannon was starting to find it hard to hold in her temper.

Jenny inhaled sharply, catching as the anger and frustration crackled in the air. “ I have some ideas to work on about the coins…. I ruled out the dates, non of the pressing dates have anything to do with the victims… also the nickel itself isn't part of it.” She caught the detectives puzzled look. Jenny flicked over one of her notes. “ Nickel, the metal. NI symbol. 28 atomic number… I was looking for a hidden code, but there isn't one.”

“ Oh.” Shannon shifted uncomfortably wondering if anyone in the department had even thought of looking into that.

Jenny kept her smile to herself, she knew how good she was, and she didn't need to rub people's noses in it. She cleared her throat. “ The same with the actual reference to them all being Thomas Jefferson nickels and not the commemorative ones that were issued…. I looked at the history of it too. Do you know who Felix Schlag was?”

“The guy from the odd couple?'' Shannon was really starting to feel stupid.

Jenny gave her a bemused smile. “ No. Felix Schlag is the man who did the sculpture imprint for the nickel… He won a prize for it in 1938. They used his plate design for the nickel press.”

Shannon gave a smirk, crossing her arms. “ Let me guess google again?”

Jenny laughed. “ Guilty… but you see that coin holds so many different things in it… so many…” she searched for the word. “…. Maybes. Does that make sense?”

Shannon looked at her, mentally the woman was going up notches on her I'm impressed list. “ Yea I'm getting it now… I didn't think on those lines.” Her eyes dipped to the coins again. “ So when you say you got ideas you mean there is a lot there to shift through….” She looked up. “ Right?”

Jenny nodded slowly, glad that the detective was finally seeing that these things take time.

“ So have you got anything at all?” suddenly Shannon felt very tired, knowing that the time was against all of them in this case, knowing that the tooth fairy wasn't going to wait around for someone to figure out his clues. He would be making a target now of some innocent person to be a chess piece on his puzzle board.

Jenny didn't need her walls down to see the detective had just figured out what she had upon taking the case. This wasn't going to be a quick result.

“ I'd like to say yes I have… I mean other than the information I've found. No. I'm sorry I haven't.”

Shannon forced a smile. “ Ok… Look, put together what you do have and email it to captain. Maybe we will get lucky…” she rose.

“ Shannon ?”

The detective turned at the door.

“ There is something I do want… it isn't in the evidence.” She saw the woman stiffen. “ No wait… I don't think its missing, I just don't think it was checked.”

Shannon relaxed. “ What?”

“ The CCTV camera footage from the mall and library if it had it.”

The detective moved closer, suddenly suspicious.” You have that?”

“ No not from the date the body was found, he made sure that was no use. I mean from the .… “ She paused, thinking. “…. I want the ones from at least a month before if not more…” her eyes rose meeting the blue ones watching her. “ He's a perfectionist Shannon he would have wanted to go over that area step by step till the point he could have found it in the dark blindfolded…” she shrugged. “ We … we could get lucky.”

Shannon starred at her wondering if the psychic could sense emotions off of video footage. “ You… you can do that?”

Jenny tilted her head in question. “ What?”

“ Sense him like that.”

Jenny would have scoffed if it weren't for the totally serious expression the detective had directed at her that moment. She cleared her throat. “ No…” she scratched her temple. “ It's hard to explain… but I would know… I mean if I saw him.”

“ Oh… well ok I'll get on to that right now…” she moved back to the doorway pausing again. “ Thanks Jenny for agreeing to help on this care… I … know it took a lot.”

Then she was gone before the starring blonde could reply.

True to her word Jenny laid out what she'd found out, which when she finished, wasn't really a lot. But it was a start. She added a personal note to the end of the document.

Tooth Fairy will appear to be the pillar of the community he lives and works in, going out of his way to be helpful. Away from this community he will more then likely have problems with people. There would be no need for him to maintain a façade.


He has two sides he keeps in balance at no point would anyone see the side of him that thinks he is invincible and way above anyone. However, away from his community, his emotion of anger would be more open. To maintain a hold on his emotions he will have a secret life. Maybe even an identity set up for this. He will visit places outside of where he lives and works to release the need inside him.


He has more than likely done something similar to this before. But, not to the degree he wanted to be noticed. He would have experiment to get the right result of death.


He would have watched the victims. Not because of a way to take them, but because he had to make sure they were the right ones. In a timeline this would have happened quickly. In my opinion checking the victims timeline beyond two weeks would be a waste of time. He would have kept a tight surveillance and would have known right away within a two day timeline if they were going to become his victim.


As for the abduction of the victims, it would have been done very simply.

Various serial killers of the past have adopted some form of disability to make the victim feel safer. Donnar…. Broken arm. Duperre. Blindness.

Our killer would have infused something very similar to make himself less threatening. Also, it would not be above believe if he took on the role of some sort of official persona. E.g.… police officer.


His intelligence level is way above normal. Which means he can adapt quickly to changing scenarios. He will be able to judge his victims from the beginning of picking them. By watching them and their habits he will find their weakness, and he will exploit it and use it to get to them


I would check into the victims and find out what their weakness would be?

Why would they trust him and go with him?


As for the use of PC3, this would not have been used to subdue them for him to kidnap. This is used afterwards to keep them quiet and manageable until he had them in a safe environment where he could continue with them. He would not have entered clubs or bars or dance halls. The changes of being discovered or seen would have been too high for him.

He wants his plans on his terms.


The use of the PC3 is because it was easy to obtain and virtually untraceable. It would have also been used because of the effects on the victims system. As I said before he would have tried and tested this in various methods before hand.


The effects of PC3 give the effect of euphoria.

He wants his victims to feel what he feels……


/ The cursor blinked waiting.

Even as Jenny glanced down at the screen and reread it, she knew it was a poor profile at best. In fact it probably matched 2 per cent of the male population. As her knowledge of the clues grew she knew so would the profile. She glanced up as Shannon came in talking on the cell.

“ Yes sir. Miss Newton is sending it through now. “

Jenny nodded, closing the file she attached it to the email and sent it.

Shannon glanced over her shoulder. “ Should be there soon…” she waited. “ Ok… can you have the CCTV files sent down tomorrow, yes sir she wants what we can get…. No sir I don't think we missed anything but she…. “ Shannon sighed. “ Sir I think this falls under the…. Miss Newton needs something without the bullshit.” She winced and pulled the phone away from her ear, grinning at Jenny as she stifled a snort. Shannon placed the phone back.” Sorry, I was just quoting…. Understand. Bye.”

She clicked it shut. “ The discs will be here tomorrow… we have a problem with the mall footage they usual went over their recording at the end of each month if it wasn't needed. The library is better we have the security footage, also there is a bank on the corner the cash machine we original checked the footage and ruled it out because the area covered isn't the area the body was left, but…. Well it shows people walking past in front of it and also covers the road. So maybe that will help.”

Jenny nodded, sitting back she stifled a yawn. “ Been a long day.”

Shannon just nodded, silently her gaze fell on the coins.

Jenny watched her, noting that the detectives jaw was clenched. “ Hey you ok?” with out thinking Jenny lent forward and her fingers brushed across the hand placed on the desktop. Her breath hitched as she got the hit of pained emotions. Saw the gunfire… haze of colors smashed into her senses throwing blood into her vision. Snatching her hand away she gasped looking at the detective as she realized she had just witnessed a moment of her past.

Shannon looked down at her hand, feeling the tingle slowly her eyes turned. “ What just happened?”

Jenny was already up, rubbing her fingers trying to get rid of the pins and needles that had settled there. “ I shouldn't…. I shouldn't have touched you… god I can't believe I just did that?”

Shannon was still standing there looking at her in surprise, suddenly unsure. “ Jenny? I felt?”

Jenny spun around, caught between trying to distance her emotions and the pull of the voice next to her. “ You felt what?”

“ I… I don't know.” Shannon still stared at her hand in wonderment.

“ Pins and needles?” Jenny eyes widened. Realizing something was defiantly different. Suddenly the detective's presence became over bearing to be around.

“Kinda… So what was that?” Shannon wasn't sure why but she was getting anger.

“ That detective is why I wouldn't let you touch me… or why I don't just touch… Jesus.” She swallowed, running a shaking hand through her hair. Taking a long breath trying to figure out why she had touched, when her first response to anything psychically since DC was to run and to never touch anyone before rising a guard. Feeling her head start to spin she moved to the door. Looking over to the detective, seeing total confusion in the blue looking at her. “ I need to go to my room ok…I need you to go to yours… I know you have question and I know I…. Please Shannon .”

Shannon moved forward, stopping when the psychic suddenly backed up fast. She had no idea what had just happened, the one thing she did understand was fear, and she saw it radiating off green eyes that wouldn't look at her. She backed up warily, giving the blonde plenty of room. “ Ok…go. “

Jenny turned, calling buddy straight into the bedroom and slammed the door.

Hearing the slam Shannon jumped, thinking sadly the wooden one being shut wasn't the only door that had just been closed to her.

Shannon fell back into what she knew, fighting the impulse to check on the small woman when she heard crying in the early hours. But it came down to, she didn't want to make it worse. As she sat at the small table stripping and cleaning her service gun, she let the familiar action calm her. She had no clue what had happened to the psychic, she'd been totally surprised when she felt the warm heat of touch on the back of her hand. What had that to be like? Not being able to touch someone? To be that isolated?

The more she thought about it, the more she didn't think she could do it and still be sane. As she clicked the magazine back into place on the glock, wiping her hands and the gun form excess oil. Her head came up pausing as she caught the click of the psychics bedroom door, listening she heard the tell tale signs of dogs paws on the wooden boards, followed by the front door being opened. Rising she wiped the last of the oil from her palms, replacing the gun into the holster at the hip. Waiting at the door for a breath she finally opened it and peeked out, then stepped into the hallway, the old floorboards creaking. As she walked her eyes went to the closed door of the bedroom. Frowning, her eyes searched the interior of the house, when she was sure the psychic wasn't there she continued to the front door as she reached it she slowed. Inhaling sharply, her feet froze to a stop. Her eyes fell on the figure at the edge of the surf.

Jenny stood there in the moonlight like a pale statue, half thrown into the shaded darkness, while the other was perfectly caught in the illumination of the night globe itself. The wind was caressing the sheet the psychic wore around her, rippling it into gentle movement. Causing it at times to stick to the skin, bellowing out behind like a train of a fairy tale cape when the wind picked up.

Shannon was frozen, she didn't think she had seen anything as beautiful in her entire life, Jenny looked like a goddess. The movement of bud out of the corner of her eye broke the spell. He came bounding over wagging his tail, she knelt smiling, ruffling his fur.

“ Hey boy.” Her head was down, when she felt the hairs on her arms stand, looking up, her eyes met with the psychic. Her heart stopped as she caught the reflection of the moon in each of the strange orbs. Her mouth went dry as she felt something stir inside, want, need, hunger.

Jenny fought with her hair as the wind threw it into her face, she watched the detective for a moment longer, feeling her pulse pick up as the stare continued, blinking and inhaling sharply at what she could feel radiating from the crouched figure. The wind blew her hair in her eyes breaking the spell, she returned her gaze back to the sea.

Giving bud one last ruffle behind the ears, she soothed her hand over his body, using the break from the vision not far from her to compose herself and her body's betrayal. She finally rose pushing her hands deep into her jeans pockets moving towards the psychic, glad that she still had her pony tail in as she felt the loose tendrils of hair whip at her face. “ You shouldn't be out here alone, you know?” she spoke as she drew level.

“ I heard the wind, it's one of the reasons I like it here so much… bud's near, if there was anyone around he wouldn't have let me outside.”

They still hadn't looked at each other. Shannon just nodded.

Jenny looked down at her feet submerged in the surf, playing with a stone with her toes. She pulling her bangs out of her eyes again, tightening the sheet around her. Giving the detective a sideways glance. “ Couldn't you sleep?”

“ Not really… I … was worried about you?” embarrassment came into her voice.

“Oh.” Jenny stepped back as a larger wave broke the surf.

Shannon 's head tilted up to the sky. Watching as ghost clouds flew across the moon, looking every bit like Odens maidens from legend. “ Looks like a storms coming.” She felt the wind pick up in response.

“ There usual is about this time of year.” Jenny pulled the sheet closer, watching the detective out of the corner of her eye, noticing the fact she now wore the gun on her hip. She darted her eyes back to the sea as Shannon 's head turned to her.

“ Couldn't you…. Sleep?”

“ I did, I got a couple of hours…”

“ So the wind woke you?”

“No… I had to check something.”


“ Something I missed,” this time she did turn her head to the detectives. “ The coins…. They have another meaning, a simpler one. So simple I missed it because I was looking too hard for something else.”

Shannon felt uneasiness spread over her as she waited.

“ It's a taunt from him…”

Shannon still waited.

“ He's telling us to put our money where our mouth is.”

Shannon eyes went back to the sea, her jaw clenching. “ He really is a cocky basterd isn't he.”

“ Yes… but that could help us.”

“ Yeah… over confident people make mistakes.” She couldn't help the bitterness that came out.

Jenny shook her head. “ No Shannon, not him… it means he doesn't like to be wrong, or make mistakes. He thinks he is above that, which means if he does make one, a small thing. He wouldn't even notice. It would unimportant to him. But to us…. It could make all the difference.”

Shannon turned fully to face her. “ You saying he has?”

Jenny shrugged before starting to walk back towards the house as she felt the first drops of rain touch her skin. Pausing she turned back. “ No, not yet. CSI is just to good now to miss something that would trace him. I'm talking more of something else… maybe someone he talked too in the past. Anything really.” She gazed out to sea again, her eyes briefly going to the sky before finally turning and heading back.

Shannon didn't follow at first, she let her gaze track the psychic until she entered the house, tipping her head back she let the tiny droplets hit her face, holding it there as she welcomed the clean feeling it brought. When she got back into the house the empty living room and den told her Jenny had gone into her room. Making sure the house was secure she finally let herself undress and go to bed, lying there for a while listening as the storm started to pick up, until finally not even the rumbling thunder kept her tired mind and body from sleep.


The summer storm grew, tempest rain came down fast, turning roads into new streams and splashing puddles of heavy droplets. While the wind became a howling banshee of sound, tossing the sea into a dance of white stallions of surf. The clear sky now nothing more than a gray blanket of tendril lightning flashes of energy, as the moon was consumed in angry clouds. The light show grew as the deep belly of the storm rumbled and grumbled its way towards morning.


When the hooker stepped from the car she cursed as she was immediately bombarded, the rain already soaking her silk shirt to a second clinging skin. Shrieking slightly she turned back, but the man had already slammed the door shut and was pulling away. She kicked out, holding her bag over her head.


Glancing up and down the now empty street she ran as quickly as she could in high heels towards the alley, seeing the only protection from the storm was under a fire escape. She slowed nervously, as the buildings cut the streetlights, changing the alley into nothing more than outlines and shadows. Moving her way around the Dumpster, her foot caught something before she could steady herself she fell hard. Dazed for a moment she lay there in the dirt and puddles the rain had now complete soaked her. When the daze wore off her emotions came back in gusto.

“ Shit… fuck… god damn it.” Pulling her leather skirt up so that she could bend her knees she turned onto all fours still cursing. Searching with her hand for her bag. Finding it she pulled it open and found the lighter, clicking it a few times sparks caused for a moment the darkened area to light up. The hooker blinked, her eyes catching something to the right, shaking now from the chill of wet clothes she edged closer, rising a now shaking left hand to protect the lighter from the rain as she flicked it again. Once again briefly the area sprung into light, Illuminating the whole scene like some macabre flick show theatre in the brief flash of light, revealing the scene of death. The hooker screamed. Scrabbling away like a retreating crab. She was still screaming when the police arrived.


Shannon groaned and rolled over her hand searching for the buzzing cell phone, finding it she clicked it open without opening her eyes. “ Yea?”

“ Boss… we got another one.”

Shannon shot up her brain still fuzzy but the rest of her coming awake. “ Where? You sure?” as she listened she swung her legs over the edge of the bed, her hand already moving to pull on her jeans.

“ Matheson street , alleyway. She was found about twenty minutes ago… Pete is already on the scene, he called us, yea it's him… coin in the mouth and matching M.O.”

“ Shit…Ok, I want you and Richard up here patrolling the outside, don't come in, but I don't want you to let her leave the house, or anyone coming anywhere near her… you got me?” She rose, cradling the cell phone under her chin, pulling the jeans over her hips doing the buttons up, dipping to pull on her socks and boots.

“ Yes boss… um… boss?” Jane's voice suddenly got nervous. “ How you going to get out there? I'm sure no ones going to take their boat out in this storm.”

Shannon paused realizing the storm was still going strong, running her hand through her hair she exhaled. Remembering her job wasn't the crime scene anymore. “ Yea... Ok forget it. I'll contact Pete.” She hung up. At that second she hated the fact she was babysitting. “God damn it.” Her hand flew out knocking the paperback from the nightstand with a bang across the room.

Jenny sat blot upright, blinking as she heard the loud rumble of thunder and the guest bedroom door slam, seeing the light go on through the crack of the door. Rising she pulled on her bathrobe, bud was already at the door sniffing at the bottom, she gently pushed him aside. As she opened the door the anger that hit her caused her to step back. Taking a breath she moved into the candlelit room, watching as the detective slammed the coffeepot into its base.

“ Shannon ?”

The detective spun almost loosing the mug from her hand. “ Jesus, don't do that.”

Jenny scratched her bed hair, yawning as she moved into the kitchen. “ Um ok… if you stop banging everything. What time is it?”

The detective pulled out an extra mug, grumbling. “ Five thirty.”

Jenny sat. “ And is there a reason you're up and angry as hell in my kitchen taking it out on my coffee pot?” She yawned again.

“ I asked you not to read my emotions.” Shannon bit back the anger almost speaking through clenched teeth.

Jenny's eyes finally focused on her. “ I apologize. But when I opened the door the room was full of it… it wasn't intentional and to be honest it wouldn't have taken a psychic to know you are pissed at something.”

The detective mumbled as she pulled the chiller open to take out the milk.

“ So, what wrong?”

“ They found another one.”

The milk carton hitting the top caused both bud and Jenny to jump. When Shannon turned to her the pain in the blue eyes nearly sent her running for the bedroom again, but just as soon as she saw it the detective had covered it.

“ About half an hour ago. Pete is on the scene, I left a message to get back to me.”

“ You… You sure it's one of his?” Jenny swallowed the queasiness.

“ Yea.”

“ I'm sorry.”

Shannon 's eyes snapped up. “ Sorry?”

Tiredly Jenny rose, “ yea… because you're not where you want to be… and no I didn't read your mind. “ She poured a coffee aware that the detective was starring, then she moved towards the den. “ I'll get back to work.” She picked up the envelope with the surveillance discs inside.

Taking a long cleansing breath, Shannon lent back against the unit, turning she ran the cold facet and cupped both hands throwing the water over her face and rubbing it around the back of her neck. Twisting the facet off she took the towel and wiped most of the excess off. Running her damp hand through her hair, pulling it free of her face, her eyes slowly coming up to the doorway of the den. Taking another breath to calm she moved towards it. Stopping and leaning on the doorframe, crossing her arms. “ Sorry… it's not your fault I'm here.”

The blonde looked up from the powering up laptop. “ Isn't it?”

Shannon shifted uncomfortably finding the strange green eyes suddenly unsettling. “ No it's his.”

Jenny held her gaze. Her eyes filled with a stern look “ Then let's catch him.” Then she lowered them back to the laptop.

Shannon was about to speak when the cell in the other room drew her attention, she quickly turned and left to answer. Only then did Jenny's eyes leave the laptop screen to stare sadly at the door.


When the sun finally rose, the storm was no more than fading grays in the sky, giving the dome of the earth a sunrise of purples and dashes of burnt orange streaks. The aftermath was apparent as soon as you walked on the beach, drift wood was thrown like white scars across the rich sand. Trees bent and broken, fences torn and scattered. While the roads and tracks were for once clean and almost shining, as the puddles reflected their aura rainbows, mirroring the now crisp blue of the sky above. The last change of a world getting back to a summer's day were the boats bobbing in the now calming swells.

Newspaper headlines were once again filled with the information on the Tooth Fairies latest victim, while the news teams were already at the scene giving their live reports. CSI teams came and retrieved their samples, and crime labs began the task of finding and matching any evidence, police canvassed the area hoping for a lead or any sort of break. By midday the crowd and news teams that had gathered at Matheson drifted away. Leaving the tented area and police taped line alone, now the only sign something wrong had happened there, Life and the day continued.

Shannon looked like hell, she was bent over the table talking into speaker phone. “ So you're saying there is no useable DNA again… Jesus Christ Pete what is this guy doing living in a god damn vacuum.”

Peters voice echoed around the room. “ Don't yell at me ok, I know. CSI says this guy is totally clean… they have a hair sample not from the victim or any of the others, but his DNA isn't on record anywhere. All they can do is break down what he did to them and cause of death. He's not killing them at the crime scene and he isn't doing it anywhere where they live.”

Shannon threw her pen down standing tall. “ Well the hair will help when we do catch him, but Jesus… ok what about the drug used the same?”

“Yea. Pc3… they gotta new lead on the deaths though the drug isn't what killed them.”

Shannon stopped her full attention going to the speaker. “ What?”

“ Can you believe this, he injected them with an air bubble.”

“ Air?” her eyes widened, now she was sure had heard everything. “ AIR?”

“ Yeah I know. Creepy isn't it that air can do that, but I got a lesson about an hour ago from Tucker at the CSI all it takes is 200ml of air in the blood stream, that's what he did. Injected it direct.”

Shannon pulled her hair back off her face. “ Jesus.” Her insides twisted realizing there was no way to trace air, part of her was holding out on the fact a drug was used, at least that they could track. “How?”

There was a pause as papers ruffled over the speaker. “ Into a vein at the left arm on the last victim, they checked on the others and five of them had the point of entry on the same arm, number two had it at the ankle. If you inject the air into a vein, it's carried to the heart and lungs where it obstructs blood flow and causes heart failure…thing is they can only detect this via x-ray the air bubbles show up. Once the autopsy is started the air bubbles can dissipate. It's why they haven't come up with it before now. Someone on the CSI team got curious and ordered one done on this one. But they have matched it to the rest of the victims.”

“ Well at least they got it now. So why the pc3? Do they think he used it to pick them up?”

“ No they don't think so it wasn't in any of the stomach contents, it wasn't ingested in any form. Again they think it was an injection of the drug to subdue them… you do know that one of the main drugs in pc3 is muscle relaxant right?”

She ignored his arrogant tone. “ Yea Pete I did….” She thought for a moment. “ Ok this means he's got another way of getting them to go with him. Anything else on the drugs used? “

“ No…” he exhaled noisily in her earpiece. “ Forensic is still working on it.”

“Ok, anything else?”

“ Not really, just the fact it was pissing down last night didn't help the CSI team when they got there this morning.”

“ Yeah…”

“ Shan, has… has that woman come up with anything yet?”

Shannon bit back her retort. “ Just the profile and some info on the coins.”

“ What info?”

“ The Latin inscription, this guy is a right smartass. He thinks he's above god.”

“ For fuck sake coins? She messing around with coins. “

Shannon cringed as the voice rose in volume.

“ She should never have been brought in on this case, I don't need my partner babysitting some weirdo I need you here.”

“ Pete shut up… you think I like it… she is coming up with some good info ok, I didn't see the crime lab come up with it... or you.” She swallowed.

“ Yeah… well. I'll call if any thing comes up. I need a partner not a fucking babysitter to report too.”

Before she could answer the loud click vibrated in room, she resisted the urge to throw the speakerphone across the room, inside she clicked it off. “Shit.”

“You ok?”

The soft voice from the doorway made Shannon jump slightly, with a guilty expression she looked up, meeting the eyes of the concerned green ones. Wondering how much she'd heard. “ Yea… that was Peter.”

The psychic stiffened. “Oh…”

Shannon curiosity rose. “ Why does he hate you?”

Jenny gave a bitter laugh as she moved towards the kitchen. “ Does he have to have a reason, he doesn't exactly hide the fact he thinks what I do is a joke or worse.”

Shannon followed, pausing to lean against the doorframe. “ No that isn't it… this is personnel.” She caught the psychic's pause as she bent to pull Buds food from the cupboard under the sink.

Jenny shrugged. “ He doesn't like me can't you leave it at that.” Somewhat angrily she poured the chow into buds bowl.

“ I could, but I don't want it to become a problem that will come up later. I'd rather know about it now.” Shannon 's eyes drifted down to Bud's wagging tail as he dug into his food, then they came back up, watching the psychic carefully.

Wiping her hand's Jenny wheeled around. “ Well that's not going to happen because I have no intention of being anywhere around him.”

Before Shannon could ask another question, Jenny moved past her going to the table studying the new information. Shannon clenched her jaw, took a long breath and followed, making sure to go to the other side of the table.

Jenny looked up slowly after she finished reading a stunned expression replacing the tired one. “ Air bubble? You can do that? Kill some one?”

Shannon just nodded solemnly. It never surprised her anymore how man could work out ways of killing another.

“ God.” Jenny pulled the chair over and sat, pushing her hair back off her face, then running a hand over her neck she looked up again. “ Tell me the truth, you don't have anything on him at all do you?”

Blue eyes jumped up, anger flaring.” No we don't.”

Jenny let out a long tired filled sigh, she knew what was coming, what always had to come in the end, her gift. She was getting nowhere fast on the coins, for the last hours she had been going around in circles hoping for some clue that she had missed the first time. Now this. Her eyes dipped to the fax picture of the latest victim. “ She was younger than the others.”

Shannon eyes followed the psychics to the page. “ Yes she was… nineteen. Law student, Amanda Burton.”

“ Did he,” her voice faltered, then she steeled herself. “ Did he rape her?”

“Yes.” Shannon 's answer was a sad whisper.

Jenny swallowed and suddenly she was somewhere else, two years in the past looking through her eyes, pain, fear, inevitability, sorrow, then nothing. She inhaled sharply.

“Jenny?” Shannon couldn't help herself stepping forward, when she saw the blonde suddenly shiver and almost gasp.


The one word stopped Shannon in her tracks, shifting uncomfortably she instead changed direction to the living room. “ Why didn't he rape all of them?”

Jenny took the space and used it, calming herself before turning in the chair. “ Mainly because the ones he did rape he found attractive… the others he didn't. This isn't about sex to him or power over woman in that way… he simple wanted it so he took it. He doesn't get off on the killing if that is what you were asking.”

Shannon suddenly wished she wasn't on duty and could go and get drunk somewhere. The more she heard about this man the more she wanted to find him and deal out her own justice. “ Did you find anything on the coins we can use? Or the discs?”

Jenny watched her curiously, seeing the detective battle with her emotions.” Some yes… but nothing that ties in with anything yet. I've watched enough footage to make my eyes bleed, but there's no one on it that grabs my attention, I'm beginning to think he has been planning this a lot longer than I first thought.”

Shannon just nodded, but Jenny saw the disappointment. Making a decision she stood, suddenly finding her legs like jelly she pushed up with her hand to stand. “ I'm not going to be quick enough finding the clue he left Shannon … I'm… I'm already too late for her. His timeline is changing… I think he has already picked out all his victims… not just the ones that are dead already… if I'm right on that… well… he…. “ Her eyes fell on the fax again. “ The next one is going to be soon.”

Shannon clenched both fists, she had hoped she had been wrong on that feeling. “ So what do you want to do?”

“ I don't want too, but I have to… I need to see…” she stuttered, her fear trying to tell her to shut up. “ I need to see where they were found.”

Shannon eyes widened. “ Leave the island?”

Jenny scoffed a laugh but there was no humor in it. “ Well unless you can bring those places here.”

Shannon ignored it.” When?”

“Later today, I need sleep first.” Her eyes came up actually seeing the woman in front of her. “ So do you.” Her voice softened.

Again blue eyes met green and nothing was said, until Shannon broke eye contact. “ We… we will have to stay on the mainland tonight you do not that right?”

Jenny bowed her head nodding. “ Yes.”

Shannon was torn, she knew just by looking at the woman in front of her the toll of what she was saying. Torn, between keeping this woman safe and wanting the killer caught. Her mind whirled going through a plan to at least make sure the first was completely honored. “ Ok how about we leave at five, that will give me time to prepare my team and clear it with the captain.”

Jenny was already walking to her bedroom. “ Fine, wake me at four.”


She paused upon hearing her name. “ Yes.”

“ I wish there were…” Shannon cleared her throat. “ Well I wish there were another way.”

“ So do I.” Jenny sighed. “ Get some sleep Shannon , I mean it.”

“Ok.” Shannon didn't know why she suddenly felt so sad, but she did. When she looked up the door was already closed.

Shannon set up her team for the trip; she had Jane and Richard as backup while leaving Tully and Simon on the island to maintain surveillance. After clearing it with a surprised Captain, Shannon now had an itinerary for visiting whichever murder scene Jenny wanted to go too. After making sure her own equipment was set and ready she gave over for her body's need for sleep, setting the alarm for three hours. Her last thought as the darkness of dreams took her, was her promise to the psychic and she hoped to god, she could keep it.

Shannon wasn't surprised when she woke the psychic was already up and waiting for her, she was even less surprised when Bud was included in the journey to the mainland. Making sure her back up team was ready, at the stroke of five all of them were boarding the ferry. She kept Jenny in her sights the whole time of the trip, keeping enough space between them so not to crowd her. She took the time to study the woman surrounded with other people. She started to pick up on subtle signs of the guarded woman's emotions. Her first discovery was Jenny used her mirror sunglasses like a weapon to anyone who was looking at her. Keeping her face stonic to all that were curious. The more Shannon watched the more she realized no matter how much the psychic appeared cold and aloof, the truth was she was terrified of being in the world again.

When the ferry docked two cars were waiting, with a final brief conversation with her team she opened the door and got in.

“ You doing ok?” Shannon clicked the seatbelt into place, starting the engine but instead of moving off she waited.

“ Not really…” Jenny turned her head from the window and gave a very unconvincing smile. “ But I'll live.”

Shannon answered the brief smile, her eyes going to the back seat and bud's head sticking out the window and his tongue licking at the wind. “ I think he's enjoying it.”

Jenny looked back, this time a genuine smile coming. “ He doesn't get to go in cars much.”

Shannon frowned as she pushed the car into gear and moved off. “ He isn't going to hurl is he?”

Jenny snorted. “ God I hope not… I'm right in front of him. Bud get down.”

With an indignant exhale the dog took his place on the back seat, finding a seatbelt a lot more interesting.

Shannon glanced into the rear view making sure the back up car was in her sights. “ So? Where to first?” she didn't need to look at her passenger to know she had just tensed.

“ The first victim… Dawn Webster.” The psychics voice was so low the engine changing gear virtually covered it as Shannon simply nodded, clicking the indicator to head in the direction. While Jenny's gaze didn't flinch from her gaze at nothing.

The journey took roughly about an hour, the whole time nothing was said inside the car. Shannon was using the time to make sure no one was following other than her back up team, occasionally she glanced over at her silent passenger. Shannon wanted to start some sort of conversation, but something always stopped her.

While Jenny mind was being kept occupied, she was going over the whole case. All the clues, all the evidence, once again the feeling she was missing something niggled into subconscious. After a while she pushed it away, instead now breaking down what she did know. No matter what way she did look at it, it all came to the same answer. She was missing something.

Feeling the car slow pulled her back to where she was.

The area looked like it had come out of Eden itself, no clue or mark gave away the fact just a week ago the first body had been found by the bridge of the lake at the center of the large park area. The summer's day was still in full bloom even though it was now after eight o'clock. The hour meant that the area was now void of younger children, now was a time for the adolescence to use it for biking and roller skates. A time for lovers, poets and artists.

As they left the car, Jenny clicked the lead onto buds collar, he looked up with an indignant look.

“ No way buddy boy, not a chance in hell I'm letting you loose in here.” Buds answer was to give his best puppy dog look then turn his attention to the trees.

Shannon closed the door, her eyes going to the parked car opposite, nodding as Jane made eye contact. Pocketing the keys she moved around to Jenny's side of the car.” Doesn't he mix well with other dogs?”

Jenny smiled. “ yes he does, so much so he forgets who he's with and gets himself lost.”

Shannon returned the smile then inhaled, for a moment she debated calling the whole thing off, but instead she steeled herself.” So? You want to go straight to the area?”

All emotion drained from the psychics face, almost a stone gaze rose to face the detectives. “ Yes.”

She quickly whirled and with a tug on the lead, started striding towards the lake. Caught off guard, Shannon had to jog to keep up, glancing back to see Jane caught off guard too and run to catch them.

Jenny didn't need a map to tell her where she was going, she could pick up the subtle essence of death caressing the air, and she simple followed the string that tugged and showed her the way. Even Bud seemed to be slowing in his pulling as his own senses recognized it. Sending a soothing sound to her dog, she turned off the main path to the lake, instead heading further into the grouping of trees.

Shannon now kept slightly back, her original strides slowing to give the woman up ahead enough space, her blue eyes scanned the area. Her own senses on high alert, a sound to her left caused her head to snap around, her hand dipping in to rest under her jacket to the gun on her hip, narrowing her eyes she concentrated, only satisfied when a bird broke from the over head trees. Her attention went back to in front of her, just in time to reach up and move a branch that would have smacked her in the face, ducking under it to clear the overhang, she looked up and stilled.

Jenny was stood frozen, her hands out in front of her palms up to the slight breeze that suddenly seemed to dip in temperature. Her head tilted to one side, her face pale. Shannon 's eyes dipped to the dog, which was backing away, his hackles rising. He came to a stop by the detective's feet looking up and giving a low whine. Shannon dropped her hand to his head offering a smile of assurance, although inside she was feeling anything but assured right then. She knew this place, she had been called out when the body was found. Jenny was standing exactly where the victim had lay, the bridge to the left of them the silent witness. She felt tingles on her skin again, looking down she wasn't surprised to see all the hairs were standing up. A sound behind her made her turn, breaking the spell for a moment, seeing Jane approach the detective shook her head signaling for her to fall back to the path, Jane nodded and retreated. Shannon waited not sure if she should move forward her eyes returned to the psychic.

Jenny closed her mind, closed her senses, pushing away the confusion coming from detective and the growing fear of the dog. She centered her inner self, opening the locked part of her mind, she inhaled sharply, second by second she moved time, and through her inner eye she watched the past.

Shannon felt it again, the tingling, like electricity sparking in the air, bud's whimper pulled her attention again and she return to the downward strokes on his fur. Finding that as much as it seemed to calm him, it calmed her. All the time her eyes went back to the psychic. Blinking for a moment She thought she saw something, almost an aura of light, of power, but just as quickly as the eyelid crossed the detectives eye the image was gone.

Jenny started walking, the move surprising the detective as she noticed through the edge of the sunglasses that the woman's eyes were still closed.

Bud whimpered looking up at her then towards his mistress, his eyes unsure.

“ Shh. It's ok you stay her, I'll keep an eye on her ok… but no wandering off.”

He looked again to his mistress then lay down. Looking up with an “ arroff .”

Shannon smiled “ Good boy.” With that said she started to follow in her ward's footsteps.

Jenny moved through the trees, ducking and stepping over things without pausing her stride.

Shannon followed close behind having a harder time navigating the branches and foliage, amazed that Jenny was doing this all with her eyes closed. Shannon stumbled through the branches, almost tripping as she cleared it. She reached out grabbing the trunk of the tree. “ Son of bitch.”

“ He came in here.”

Shannon spun, her hand reaching for her gun, the psychics voice totally catching her by surprise so close to her ear. The surprise vanished and turned to confusion as she found the woman standing on the far side of the clearing. “ What?” she swallowed trying to control her heart rate, finally she got it enough under control to step forward. “ He?”

Jenny looked up, her arms already coming up to wrap around herself. “ Yes He…He brought her this way, using the river.”

Her head tilted, nodding slightly. Shannon followed her gaze, seeing the rivers surface glistening through the trees.

“ He had a boat, a small one probably rented, I'm not sure. But I do know he went the way we just came, he carried her, almost like he cared. “ She paused. “ She was wrapped in plastic, under that she had the shroud. He placed her down, it was just before dawn, he likes that time, and it leaves him in shadows. He unwrapped the plastic, taking the same care as when he carried her… all the violence and death was done long before he came to this place. This wasn't part of that, this was…” She frowned. “ This was his way of honoring her.”

The emotion vanished from her voice, returning to the unemotional one she had begun with. “ He removed the plastic carefully, he is always aware of leaving any trace, he takes the plastic with him each time. This is the first body you found, but it isn't the first time he has used the covering. There is already a taint of death on it.”

For a moment Jenny got caught up in the scene, watching in the third person as the killer pulled the body from the boat. Cradling it in his arms as he walked towards her, she closed her eyes as the past ghost moved through her body continuing into the tree line. She shuddered as she tapped into his emotions.

Shannon wasn't sure what to believe. But what the woman said made some sort of sense, they had blanketed the area with CSI, even the FBI had searched the area for evidence. But as it was the first case the search had been through but different to the rest. All Shannon did know the psychic believed what she was saying, she stood watching the psychics head turn and moved slowly as if watching an unseen figure. She even turned her own gaze to the empty space.

Jenny's voice began once again pulling the detectives focus back.

“ He doesn't feel remorse for the killing, but he feels its his responsibility for the body, he wants to make sure she isn't out here alone to long, he doesn't want any animal to desecrate her. He… he sees the body as a beautiful thing… a temple, but he doesn't see her as that. To him, the person she was doesn't exist anymore.”

Shannon was spellbound by Jenny's voice, all her usual attention to detail and sense of danger around her had vanished, all that mattered to her right then and there was Jenny. She was pulled to it.

The psychic moved forward stepping closer to the detective. Sudden emotion coming into her voice. “ This gives him such a feeling of power Shannon , a euphoria bigger than any drug.”

Shannon blinked realizing Jenny was now standing right in front of her. Wondering why she hadn't seen her move.

“ He likes it Shannon , and the more he does it the more he needs. Each time he kills the potency looses its kick to his system. He's becoming addicted to the feeling, its overriding the sane part of his mind that wants to lay tests and clues.”

Shannon scoffed finally finding her voice again and breaking the pull she felt. “ Sane?”

“ Not sane in the way you place it, he would be classed as insane in our society's system.”

Shannon needed to move away, the feelings inside her confusing her more than ever. She walked towards the tree line stepping through onto the bank of the river, glancing up and down. “ You say he came this way, can you follow him.” She heard the twig snap next to her knowing Jenny was now standing just behind her.

“ No, water is a hard path to follow.”

Shannon turned her head. “ Why?”

“ It's a living entity of its own.”

Jenny had to smile at the frown that covered the detective face. “ I don't mean a breathing one like us, its an eternal one, its filled with so many different types of life as you would understand, but the water itself is life. It holds its own energy.”

Shannon 's frown intensified, she looked back at the water. “ and that makes it hard to follow a… a.” she scratched the back of her neck, having no idea what she was saying, or even meaning.

“ It makes it impossible to tap into for me, the only way I can is if there is a life essence involved.”

Shannon saw the shadow of sadness fall across the woman's face, she wondered if she was remembering the case with the boy. She wanted to ask, but knew now wasn't the time. She looked around. “ You keep mentioning an essence, what the hell is that?”

Jenny smiled, turning her head briefly and watching the tree line. Shannon couldn't help but to follow with her eyes. They both watched as bud broke into the clearing his tail wagging and heading for them. Jenny dipped catching his front paws as he jumped up at her. “ Yes yes I know... It's fine. I'm fine.” She ruffled his fur, pushing him down, laughing at his antics to get up.

Shannon couldn't help smiling.

Jenny laughed again as bud managed to get in a lick to her face, she knelt down running her hands over her fur, taking in the love he offered, she glanced up, her smile freezing in place as she met the gaze of the detectives. They stayed like that just looking.

Brown canine eyes glanced to each of them in turn, his lip curled up into an almost smile.

Shannon broke the gaze first her attention going back to the river. She wasn't sure why but the breeze around her was warm on her skin, even though the trees surrounding her cut all direct light form the sun. “ The essence, what is that?”

Jenny cleared her throat, well aware of what she was feeling. Lust, passion, want, need. Things that she hadn't allowed herself to feel for a long time. Buds paw to her chin broke her into her turmoil. She looked down at him, smiling at the look he was giving her. “ The essence is what I call it, some cultures do too, depending on what you read.” She rose picking up a stick and throwing it, watching bud take off after it. She turned her attention back to the detective. “ It's the power within us, its in every living breathing thing, its threads of life, pain, love, anger, shame, to name but a few of the emotions. The stronger the emotion the stronger the essence. Its light, it's a streaming energy that leaves a residue, a key if you like for me to follow, or others who know how to look for it and find it. “

Shannon looked across the river seeing the path of the far side. “ Can you smell it?”

Jenny half laughed then bit back the rest as blue eyes snapped around to her. “ Sorry I'm not laughing at you… “

Blues eyes looked doubtfully back.

“ I'm not… its just.. Well my nose can't smell it but I suppose yea a part of me knows the scent in a way. Mostly I can feel it, not by touching it as you would but… well all over me, through me. The part I can see, I suppose you would recognize if I called it an aura.”

Shannon nodded. “ Yea I've heard of that, that we all have one.”

“ The ancient Aztecs believe that your aura was your spirit warrior the protection around you, that when you died in battle the spirit would remain within the tribe and during battles or times of war, the high priestess could call upon the spirit warriors to help protect their people. They were known as the Shadow Warriors, but they weren't a solid form, more of an energy. There are so many descriptions and legends Shannon , its kinda hard to explain just one.”

Jenny paused watching the detective's face, relieved to find genuine curiosity rather than disbelief. “ Myths, histories and fables, each mention the essence of life, even Christianity does so and calls it the soul. Different interpretations, different words, different translations.”

Shannon turned this time. “ You saying there isn't such a thing as a soul?”

Jenny sighed. “ No, I'm not, all I'm saying is as much as you are finding what I'm telling you is hard to understand or even believe, there is too much written through the ages, its just called different names.”

“ But with things like this you can't psychically touch something to feel the connection, I mean like you told me about not to touch you? Or being in crowds?”

“ No, a living thing is different, I feel the emotions a lot stronger, being around a lot of people is like someone dumping a million different things on my skin and body, hence why I have to erect the walls I told you about… The same with someone who touches me when I'm not aware or ready I will pick up on their emotion at the time and sometimes that shows me the link to that emotion.”

For a moment the scene of the shooting and Shannon 's flash of pain entered her head, she shook it clear, turning her attention back to the detective.

“ The dead…” Jenny swallowed. “ The dead or something in the past is different… I have to seek a thread out to follow. Any scene of violence or an unnatural death leaves a different residue, in a way a stronger one. I can seek that out.”

“ So you follow the essence?”

Jenny nodded.

“ But how do you see things, I mean you talk as if you can see the past like watching a movie or something?”

A smile twitched on Jenny's face. “ It is in a way but its more vivid because I feel it, I smell the air, I breath the sweetness, if its raining I feel it on my skin. I suppose the best way to explain it is I tap into the energy the essence and let it take me to the point I want to be in... Then I can… I can well, see through the eyes of the person I'm attached too, but I can also move back and see if from I suppose the camera mans point of view. I pick up on emotions. I can't read thoughts remember, so I have to feel the emotions, pain, anger, need, want, fear…. The list goes on.”

Shannon frown deepened.

“ You don't believe any of this do you?” Jenny felt the frustration inside rise, the one that always did when she had to explain her life, her talent.

The detective found herself wanting to believe, but how could she, how could she wrap her sane trained mine around the fact this woman was standing here trying to convince her that moments ago she had seen the killer from the past. Sighing she shook her head. “ Guess I'm still your doubting Thomas.”

Jenny gave a sad smile. “ I guess so.”

Blue eyes turned back to the water. “ So this essence can't survive in that.”

“ No, it gets mixed and lost.”

“ Kinda like a blood hound loses its scent over water?”

Jenny's eyes snapped up surprised that Shannon had so quickly come up with a simple analogy of what she was trying to explain. “ Yes... Exactly.”

Shannon turned grinning. “ Not bad for a doubting Thomas right?”

Jenny laughed, then her attention went to bud as he stopped sniffing under a log his eyes going to the trees. Before Jenny could call him Shannon 's voice broke over.

“ Don't worry it's just Jane, I'm surprised she stayed away this long, she not known for her patience.”

Jenny looked to the trees again not seeing anyone, but catching the faint knowing feeling inside of someone being there, she eyes moved back to Shannon , a questioning look coming to her face. “How did you know that?”

“ Know what?”

“ That it was Jane?”

Shannon shrugged, “ Just knew. Always do.”

Jane at that moment broke clear of trees, tripping over the same log Shannon had had trouble with, coming to a halt at the bottom of the ditch, looking up she found three pairs of eyes locked on her, she blushed.

Shannon grinned moving away from Jenny. “ Great keeping out of sight technique you got there. Jane.”

Jane gave her a sheepish look. “ Well you've been gone for over an hour.” She rose brushing the brambles from her jeans.

Shannon paused in mid stride. “ An hour.” She quickly looked down at her watch. Then back over to Jenny who was still looking at with the frown. “ What?”

Jenny shook her head. “ Nothing.”

Shannon studied her for moment then when she saw Jenny wasn't going to tell her. She sighed knowing she was missing something. “ Jen are we finished here?”

Jenny looked around sadly. “ Yes, I'd like to go to the next one. Amy Long, wasn't it?”

Shannon nodded, watching as Jenny picked up the lead and re-attached it to bud before heading back towards the car. She became aware of Jane's gaze following the woman as well. She walked up to Jane. “ I don't know if I believe her or not, but I do know she believes it.”

Jane nodded. “ Yea, she still scares the shit out of me though.”

Shannon blinked. “ She does?”

“ Yea, doesn't she you?” Jane looked up at her friend.

Shannon thought realizing at no point had she been afraid. “ no.”

“ How on earth can you not be freaked by the fact she says she sees dead people?”

“ She didn't say she could see ghosts Jane, just the past.”

Jane frowned. “ And the difference is?”

Shannon didn't have an answer. Her eyes were keeping the psychic form in sight, “ come on lets get going and try not to fall over anything.” She stepped back into the foliage.

“ Har, har.” Jane moved to follow then stumbled, “ shit.”

Shannon looked back giving a smirk.

Jane flicked an unidentifiable sticky thing of her hand, panicking when it still clung to it, “ oh shut up.” Finally she rubbed it down her jeans in disgust.

Shannon 's laugh echoed as she jogged to catch up with the psychic.

The car journey to the next victim's site was a duplicate of the first, neither Shannon or Jenny talked. Arriving at the area, Shannon let the psychic lead again, keeping far enough back to keep her in sight.

Jenny moved into the area, heading again without instruction towards the exact place. This one was a rundown area running parallel with the train tracks, the body had been found laid out with the shroud on the upper bank. The passengers on the ten thirty train had seen it, commenting on the fact that the body looked like a renaissance painting. The psychic moved over the fencing stopping at the site, once again her eyes closed and her hands extended.

Shannon paused on the other side of the fence line, her eyes scanning the area. Jane as usual stayed back. Shannon looked down when she felt the dog brush against her leg, seeing the same response in him. Smiling she hunched down, allowing her hand to once again calm him and herself. The detective felt the pull again, she let her eyes go to psychic. Inhaling sharply as she felt the tingling start on her skin.

This time Jenny didn't stay as long she walked back. The train passing above them made them both jump at the sudden assault of noise and vibration. Shannon rose, waiting.

Jenny pushed her hair back from her face stopping in front of the detective.

“ He walked along the tracks. He carried her like the last one, using the same plastic sheeting to wrap her in. he knew the train times, knew he wouldn't be seen. He wanted the passengers to see her like they did. Wanted them to see the beauty of the corpse.” Jenny turned her face up to the tracks, watching the last of the train pass. “ He found it funny.”

Shannon eyes moved from the end of the train to the psychic. “ Funny?”

Jenny nodded. “ Yes. Funny that all those passengers would see his work without paying admission and what he did would stay engraved in their life forever.”

“ Sick fuck.” Shannon swiped out at a branch in distaste.

“ Yes very much so. But in a way he thinks he is just a misunderstood artist. Shannon didn't you ever feel when you looked at the victims and the way they are laid that it's staged.”

Shannon inhaled deeply. “ Yes I did, and so did the profilers.”

“ He sees the beauty in death. He wants everyone to see it. The shroud is just a part of it.”

“ Shroud? I thought that was just a clean way of keeping his DNA off the bodies.”

Jenny shook her head, dipping down to lift a flower, smelling its fragrance for a while. “ Yes and no, but the shroud has another meaning, its an ancient way of preparing the body for passage to the next level. A lot of ancient cultures Egyptian, Christianity, Jewish, roman and Celt…. Shannon he believes in the afterlife, how the body dies isn't important to him, how he kills them isn't either. But the dead, well he feels he has to perform this ritual.”

Shannon looked at the flower in the psychics hand, letting her eyes travel over each finger that held the stem, wonder what they would feel like on her body, caressing her. Realizing what she was doing she coughed and shoved her hands in her pockets changing her gaze to the area. “ Is it satanic?”

Jenny smiled inwardly well aware what had just happened. She wasn't surprised to find her own body responding to what she'd felt. It was getting near impossible to erect a wall to the detective, especially when those sudden certain thoughts assaulted her senses. She turned away addressing Shannon 's question. “ No, if anything its purity.”

“ Purity?”

“ He thinks this is the closest way to god.” Jenny turned her head, watching bud running in the tall grass.

Shannon snorted. “ I thought you told me this wasn't a cult thing.”

The psychics eyes snapped to the detectives, catching the anger. “ It's not. He isn't part of any cult. As I told you before he sees himself above man above god.”

“ Friedrich Nietzsche.”

Curiosity eyes turned to the detective. “ You mean the superman guy.”

Shannon grinned. “ Yea. Nietzsche saw the Superman as the answer to the nihilistic rejection of all religious and moral principles. Simply he believed god was dead, didn't exist. That certain men were gods in their own time.. That these men had a destiny already laid out and it was up to them to full fill it.”

Shannon raked up a memory. “It's that something along the lines of how Julius Caesar felt, Full filling his destiny?”

Jenny looked at her pleasantly surprised. “ Yes, he would be classed as one of Nietzche's supermen, among Socrates, Jesus, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Shakespeare, Goethe, Alexander and Napoleon.”

Shannon pulled a strand of grass, chewing it in the corner of her mouth.

“ Jesus? How can he class the Son of God as a superman?”

Jenny smiled. “ He didn't believe in god remember, to him Jesus was just another man who was born and held the traits of his supermen. Someone who fulfilled his destiny.”

Shannon thought for a moment, then turned her gaze to Jenny. “ What was the philosophy of Nietzsche?”

Jenny shuddered. “ Power. And that's what I feel from him Shannon. Pure absolute power.”

Shannon resisted the urge to touch her. “ I'm guessing he reads Nietzsche.” She added a smile.

Jenny gave a small one back. “ Yes I think he does. How come you know about Caesar?”

Shannon laughed, blushing slightly. “ Late night stakeouts, got to have something to keep me awake, you'd be surprised what I've read.”

Jenny careful erected a wall as she felt the detective open her emotions. “ Can we go to the next one, this area doesn't have a lot left I can tell you.”

Shannon nodded stepping back to let Jenny take the lead. She watched her call over the dog, then before she followed she let her eyes go back to the embankment one last time, sighing sadly as she turned to follow.

Shannon stood back from the area, now getting used the fact that she felt tingles when the psychic was doing her thing. She let her blues eyes go over the area, now in the late evening the mall wasn't as busy as it would have been in the daylight, the couples that passed by were the typical type that frequented the cinema and restaurants in the complex above the mall itself.

Her eyes went to the psychics, watching her move around the fountain where the third body had been found. The first male on the victim list. Keeping half her concentration on the woman and the rest on occasionally glances to the area and the passing people. She saw Jane walking the figure eight of standard surveillance, glad that Jane was keeping her attention to the people and leaving her to make sure the psychic was ok. Bud was as usual by her feet, his tail wagging occasionally when people approached, she noticed that people always let their guard down when they spied the handsome retriever, a few of them coming over to give him a pat on the head.

Shannon straightened as she saw the psychic stiffen, watching as she turned her head towards the far side of the street. She followed her gaze, trying to see what the psychic could see. When the psychic moved off the detective followed. They both came to a stop.

“ Jenny?”

Slowly the psychic turned, her face again like stone, then her head tilted downward, coming to a stop when her eyes rested at her feet.

“ Hey you ok?” for a moment Shannon nearly forgot the no touch rule, that was until she heard the rumble of Bud's throated growl, she stepped back. “ Jen, what is it?”

Jenny pointed to her feet, the detective's eyes followed. Not understanding what she was supposed to be seeing.

“ What?”

Jenny swallowed. “ He brought the body this way, inside the fountain is a room, it's used for the water system, maintenance.”

Shannon 's gaze briefly went back to the fountain. “ Yes we knew that. But there's no way he could have gotten the body into that room without being seen Jenny, there's cameras all around this mall.”

“ There's a man hole cover in the floor, it leads to the under foundation overfull system.”

Shannon nodded, her face showing that she really wasn't understanding where the psychic was going with this.

Jenny let out a breath. “ It's how he got the body there without being seen. He took it through this sewer, underground.”

Her finger pointed to the man hole cover she was standing on, then her finger zigzagged a pattern across the street, stopping and pointing to another man hole cover on the opposite side, which was hidden in an alley.

“ It leads up into the water system room. He removed the grill that's in the back, let the body float out, securing the grill in place. Then simple went back down into the sewer then back over to the exit and walked away.”

“Jen, they checked the grill in there, it didn't have any signs of being opened.”

Jenny's head snapped up. “ That's not my problem, I can't help it if your team didn't find anything, because that's how he did it, and that's why I couldn't find him on any of the surveillance tapes.”

Shannon took a breath, biting back a retort. “ Ok, so he did It that way, what are you picking up? “

Jenny studied the detective, realizing she was being humored but choose to let it pass. “ The same mostly as the rest, his need to take care of the body, he used the same sheeting as the rest, carried the body along the tunnels. He's in good psychical shape he knows how to control his body, make it ignore pain, exhaustion… he likes control, he needs it. “

She moved, walking across the road stopping over the metal disc cover, she knelt down running her hands over the surface. Shannon came to a stop next to her, waiting.

Jenny rose, brushing her knees off. “ Were all the victims manicured?”

Shannon 's eyes didn't hide their surprise. “ Yes they were.”

“ And washed?”

Shannon nodded. “ Yes, we think he used some sort of saline solution to wipe off any trace of DNA or any residue we could have used.”

Jenny shook her head, her head turning to watch the crowd of people moving around the fountain. “ No, well in part yes. “ Her sun glassed eyes came back to rest on the detectives. “ It's part of the ritual, he cleans them, bathes them, and washes them. Hair, nails, skin. He takes care of them so that when they move on their body is as pure as the day they were born.”

“ Is it sexual?”

Jenny shook her head. “ No, not at all. This is almost motherly, “ she frowned. “ No, not motherly, it's... “ She struggled for the word, searching her senses. Then her face came up. “ Oh Shannon , its godly, he thinks he's a god.”

“ Wait you said he thought he was above god?”

“ He is, he does, he thinks he's a higher god, not god as in creation and holy, your right he believes in Nietzsche, he thinks all of this is his destiny… that he has no choice in the matter.”

Shannon frowned, this guy was sounding more and more like a fruit loop, what made it worse was this fruit loop had a brain and Intellect that probably out did half of the police department. Stupid criminals made mistakes through lack of knowledge, or know how. A smart one was harder to catch, but not impossible because they would keep to a trait or within their own knowledge. But one who was above average intelligence became almost the Moriarty of the criminal world, only stoppable when they made a mistake. They were unpredictable, with no motivation, no ties to victims.

“ Shannon ?”

The detective turned her attention back to the psychic. “ What does he want Jenny? I mean really want?”

“ Recognition, that he's better then the rest of us. Immortality in the only way he knows how. A place in history, a mark to say he was here. Just like Caesar and the rest.”

Shannon wiped her hand back through her hair, exhaling, suddenly realizing how tired she was. “ Well he's certainly getting that at the moment.”

Jenny sighed sadly. “ Yeah.”

“ Why the clues, I still don't get those?”

Jenny started walking back to the fountain, the detective easily fell into step beside her.

“ Every great mind has to find their equal, someone that totally understands them. To be in awe of him, and in away worship him… Moriarty had his Holmes, Rommel had Monty, Mordred had Arthur, if you want to come down to the basic, Skywalker had Vadar, it's evil and good Shannon , a balance there has to be one for them. Because above all else they have to be understood and deemed worthy.”

They stopped now as they reached the car, Shannon looked around to make sure Jane had reached hers before opening the central locking on her own and getting in along with Jenny and bud.

Shannon sighed, pausing as she turned the key in the ignition, turning her gaze to Jenny. “ I don't understand most of this, if any.”

Jenny removed her glasses, pinching the bridge of her nose. “ I know.”

“ But you do don't you?” Shannon 's hands tightened on the wheel.

Jenny sat back, sighing heavily. “ Yes. Unfortunately I do.”

“ So is he looking for his Holmes to decipher the clues?” Shannon pushed back the uneasy feeling she was starting to get.

Jenny clicked her seatbelt into place, resisting the urge to go back to the island. “ Yes.”

Shannon 's eyes came around to her. “ You're it aren't you?”

It suddenly became clear to the detective just how much Jenny had put herself on the line again. Understanding Jenny's first refusal, she knew as soon as she got involved in the case that the killer would know, the clues being discovered and answered would tell him someone worthy was now stalking him.

“ Yes, I'm it.” Jenny looked out of the window her voice breaking slightly as she swallowed the fear in her throat.

Shannon felt a sudden rush of protectiveness, she made a silent vow to herself that no matter what happened, and this time the psychic was going to be safe. Her jaw tensed, then without another word Shannon started the car and pulled out, heading to the forth victims site.

By the time they reached the site, night was starting to lay claim to the summer skies, a flowing gray mixed with the blue and yellows of the setting sun streaked across the horizon.

Jenny moved through the red tiled pedestrian area, her eyes going briefly to the library steps. Walking in silence she moved to the area she knew held the faint thread of death. She could feel the detective nearby and the subtle hint of the protective scent that radiated from her. It added warmth inside, which seeped into the coldness that always came when she opened her senses to the taste of death. Taking a breath she steadied her inner calm, opening herself once again.

Shannon stood against a wall her arms crossed, her eyes taking in the area, like she did the first time she had been called out. This time she was more nervous for some reason, whether it was the fact she was here with a psychic, or this time she didn't have bud next to her to keep her calm. Jenny had decided to leave him in the car. A brief smile came to the detectives mouth, imagining what her back seat was gonna look like and how she was going to explain it to the police automobile section. She bristled as she caught the faint tingles on her skin again, her eyes returning to the woman. Watching her for a few minutes before turning her attention back to the area.

Her mind was a mass of question of what she had found out within the last few hours. Part of her was still in awe of the information and how Jenny had found it. But for whatever reason or how it was done, at least now they had some sort of explanation for the body at the fountain. But this area still didn't have any answers, there was no underground system, or any out of sight foundation tunnels to give an explanation to the fact this body was left laid out in plain sight on the library steps. Her eyes went back to the pacing psychic, watching her as she moved back and forwards across the square. Her attention shifted again, her head tilting up to watch a descending couple as came out of the library.

“ Boss.”

The voice in her earpiece made her tense, she looked around until her eyes found Jane on the far side of the square, other then that there was no movement from her body what so ever. “ What's up?”

“ There's a guy, brown hair about five ten, jeans, denim jacket, in his mid thirties. He's to the left of you, standing by the Bike Park . He's been watching our lady friend for the last ten minutes.”

Inside Shannon tensed again, but outside it looked like she casually turned her body slightly, taking in the male form out of the corner of her eyes, she kept her voice low. “ Go around come up behind him, keep watching but don't engage.”

“ Understood.”

Shannon walked with steady strides until she drew level with Jenny, making sure she kept her body between the psychic and the man. “ Hi.”

Jenny paused in her movements, drawing herself away from the threads. The concern from the detective overbearing into her thoughts, she quickly stepped back erecting a wall. “ What's wrong?” her eyes darted around the area.

Shannon forced a smile. “ Nothing, just wanted to come over here.”

“ Ahuh.” Jenny didn't believe it for a minute.

“ Boss, he's moving towards you.”

Shannon 's head snapped around quickly locating the approaching figure. She stepped forward, her hand dipping down to the gun. Jenny saw and felt it, she quickly looked around her eyes stopping on the approaching figure, seeing Shannon tense more and move forward. “ Shannon , it's ok I know him.”

Surprised blue eyes came round to look at her. “ You do?”

Jenny nodded then walked to greet the man, a huge smile coming to her face. Shannon 's eyes opened even wider as the two of them embraced.

“ Um boss, what's going on?”

Jane's voice crackled in her ear again, shaking her head to clear it she relaxed her hand from the gun. “ It seems our psychic knows him. Stand down, go back to surveillance.”

“ Ok, understood.”

Jenny kept the hug going for a while, welcoming the feeling of touching someone. Drawing back she grinned again. “ Hello Marcus.”

“ I thought it was you, I wasn't sure… Jesus why the hell are you doing here.” His voice dipped as his eyes looked past her. “ And who is the imposing beauty who is giving me dagger looks?”

Jenny snorted. “ Come on I'll introduce you.” She took his hand pulling him with her.

Shannon waited, her eyes going to Jenny in question as she and the man stopped in front of her. Well aware that they were holding hands.

“ Marcus Wiley this is detective Shannon Rhimes.”

Marcus blinked looking at Jenny to see if she was kidding. “ No shit?”

Jenny smiled. “ Yea no shit.”

Marcus's grin widened, offering his hand to the detective. “ Well please to meet you, although I do have a clue what you're both doing here.”

Jenny waited, watching Marcus's face as Shannon reached forward to take his hand. Not surprised when Marcus paled slightly and turned surprised eyes back to her. Jenny just smiled back at him.

“ Nice to meet you Mr. Wiley and what makes you think we are here other than to take in the architecture.” Shannon forced a smile, breaking the handshake.

He inhaled for a second, giving a narrowed eyed glare to Jenny. Coughing and composing himself he turned full attention back to Shannon. “ Well let's see the fact that less then two weeks ago a body was found dead right on those very steps, and knowing Jenny and how she works, and let's see you being a detective. I don't need to be a genius.” He smirked folding his arms in front of him.

“ I see.” Shannon looked around briefly then leveled her eyes right on him. “ So what are you doing here?”

Jenny hid her smile. Marcus flinched as he stepped back, looking now between the detective and the psychic in confusion.

Shannon caught it. “ Is something wrong?”

“No, I mean. “ He looked at Jenny for help.

She stepped forward, petting his arm as she intervened.” He's a psychic Shannon like I am.”

The detective hid her surprise. “ And that's a problem why?”

Marcus looked up at the detective. “ You have no idea do you.”

“ Marcus.”

Jenny's stern tone cut off his next question. She shook her head he shrugged. “ I'm here because I wanted to see if I got any hits off the area.”

“ Hits?” Shannon was unsettled first at the whole no touching clause with Jenny going right out of the window with this man, and second she didn't like the fact she had no clue what they were talking about.

He sighed. “ Psychic hits.”

“ Ah.” Shannon looked at both of them, still not understanding one single thing that was going on.

“ Did you?” Jenny started to relax.

Marcus ran his hand back through his hair. “ Not one, not a single one, I don't get it…” he looked up. “ Have you?”

Jenny went quiet for moment. “ No.”

Shannon turned her eyes from the area to the psychic. “ You didn't?”

“ Not really, I get the thread of where the body was, but this time I don't get any feelings from him, none. “

“ What about the sheet?”

“ Yes that was involved, but… “ She frowned, her head turning as she surveyed the area again. “ It's not here, there's no connection or touch to the steps, but it was on the body at some point. There nothing else, it's like he didn't walk across here, he didn't visit here he didn't touch anything around here, except for the body.”

Marcus nodded. “ Same here.”

“ You sure it's the same killer Jenny.”

The psychic nodded to the detective, “oh yes its him. I can feel the faint trace of power.”

She stepped away from the pair, walking towards the steps, her head tilting upwards, she stopped. “ Shannon this victim had rope marks on his body didn't he.”

Shannon moved forward. “ Yes, torso and upper arms. Why?”

“ Maybe the reason I can't actually feel him around here is because he never was.”

“ Ok, you're now saying he isn't the killer?”

Jenny pointed up to the top of the library. “ No, what I'm saying is he did it from up there.”

Shannon followed her gaze, seeing the scaffolding crisscrossing the upper part of the old library building. “ Jen, I'm sorry but if he'd dropped the body from up there we would know. We checked that area out there's was no sign of him.”

Jenny turned to face her. “ He didn't drop it Shannon, he lowered it.”

With that she started up the steps heading towards the entrance of the library. Leaving Shannon to look back up at the scaffolding and then back down to the steps in wonderment.

“ She's good isn't she, I would never have worked that out in a million years.” Grinning Marcus slapped Shannon on the back and then took the steps two at a time to catch up to his friend.

Narrowing her eyes at him briefly she headed up the steps, speaking into the small Mic as she did. “ Jane, stay on perimeter we're heading into the library.” She was already at the doors when the ‘'okay'' resounded in her ear.


Jenny moved through the library heading towards the back. When security stepped forward to stop them, a quick flash of Shannon's badge continued their journey. Ten floors up Jenny opened the roof door and stepped out. She moved forward, her eyes checking the area, well aware that her two friends had stopped at the door and were watching.

Marcus looked Shannon up and down. “ So tell me how you talked her into helping you?”

Shannon answered but her eyes didn't leave the psychic. “ My captain worked with her before, I just went and asked.”

Marcus eyebrows rose. “ Really,” his eyes went briefly to the psychic before returning back to the detective. “ Just like that?”

Blue eyes briefly went to him. “ Yea just like that.”

“Hmmmmmmm.” He looked at her for a moment longer then looked over to Jenny. “ Somehow that doesn't add up, but she's here so I'll go with it for now.”

They both watched as Jenny moved around. Shannon then turned her attention to Marcus. “ How long have you known her?”

A small smile came to his mouth. “ About twelve years give or take a day or too.”

Shannon just nodded.

Marcus tried to hide the full smile this time. “ Isn't your question really, how do I know her?”

Shannon stiffened. “ You're reading my emotions?”

His head shot to her. “ No, I don't do that. My ability is more objects, but I must admit you do give off one hell of a buzz.”

“ Buzz?” she shifted uncomfortably.

“ Oh yea.” He grinned wildly.

Shannon met his eyes. Then feeling uneasy at the stare he was giving her, she turned away. “ What do you mean objects?”

He shrugged. “ Compared to jen, my abilities are kindergarten. I get a kind of flash imagery, of people, or things that happened, when I touch things.”

Shannon gave him a wry look.

He laughed. “ Ah, I see you're a non believer.”

“ Actually she's my doubting Thomas.”

Shannon turned to the voice, flashing Jenny a tooth filled grin. “ That I am.”

Marcus looked at each of them, then resisted the urge to whistle. “ So any luck?”

Jenny's face sobered. “ He came across from the next building, the scaffolding is on this side gave him easy access, above where the steps are below he set up a harness and lowered the body down just before dawn. It wouldn't have taken him more then five minutes to lower it. Up here he had all the time in the world, there's no surveillance on this side or the other building. Without going over there I don't know how he got to the roof, but I know he didn't come through the library.”

Shannon stepped forward her eyes following the path Jenny had just laid out, walking to the edge of the scaffolding she looked across to the other building, her eyes dipping to the ground far below.

“ He couldn't have jumped this, especially carrying a body, he may think he's a superman, but he isn't.”

Jenny moved to her side. “ I'm guessing if we look on the other roof top there's some sort of plank, one he took from this side when he went back over. If he had left it here it would have made it too easy to figure out.”

Shannon thought for a moment, then pulling her cell free she flipped it open. “ Hi Peter, yea, listen I want a forensic team down at the library and the building next door…” her flashed darkened. “ I know they have been over it , well now I want it done again, this time the roof and scaffolding.” She turned away from the other two walking out of their earshot. “ Shut up… yes she led me to the area… god damn it peter just get it done, if you don't think you can handle it I'll get someone else…. Fine.” She snapped the cell shut, taking a deep breath to calm her anger.

Marcus looked on with interest. “ Is that the peter I think it is?”

Jenny just nodded. Her eyes were locked on Shannon's pacing form.

“ Oh boy, see he hasn't changed then. Doe's um… does she know what happened between you two?”

Jenny's snapped to him, her voice rising. “No, and she isn't going too unless I or peter tell her.”

Marcus held up his hands. “ Whoa… you know I would never do that.”

“ Do what?”

They both turned their heads to Shannon as she stopped in front of them.

“ Eat squid.” Marcus grinned.

Shannon blinked in surprise. “ Squid?”

“ Yea gotta hate something that squirts ink for a living.”

Jenny had to turn her head away covering her mouth with her hand.

Shannon looked at each of them, once again she didn't have a clue what was going on. “ The forensic will be here within the hour.”

“ They won't find anything Shannon.”

Shannon sighed. “ I know, they already went over most of it anyway, those guys don't miss much. But as you said one day we might get lucky.”

They all fell silent, the only sounds the wind whistling around the chimney breasts and through the guttering, mixing in with the rustling of the heavy plastic curtains covering the scaffolding.

“ It's getting late, do you want to go to the next one?”

Jenny shook her head. “ No, I'm too tired to really focus.”

“ you going back to the island?” Marcus looked to each of them for an answer.

Shannon waited for Jenny to answer.

“No.” the psychics voice was low. “ Tomorrow.”

Marcus nodded. “ Well you're both welcome to my place.”

“ No.” Shannon's voice was stern.

Jenny closed her mouth as Shannon answered turning to her with a questioning look on her face.

Shannon's eye were fixed on Marcus. “ No offence but I don't know you and I don't know your apartment either. We already have a hotel set up that's safer. So thank you but I have everything under control.”

“ Shannon I trust him. I'd like to stay there.”

“ Am I in charge of making sure your safe?” blue eyes sparked.

Marcus watched both of them with interest, seeing his friend bristle.

“ I didn't exactly have a choice in that as I remember.”

Marcus eyes went back to the detectives, seeing her stiffen.

“ You can request someone else, but until they take over I'm responsible whether you like it or not, and in my opinion the hotel is safer. I can control the situation there.”

His eyes went back to his friend, seeing her bite back the anger.

“ I'm not a child Shannon, and I'm not a situation either. If I want to stay with Marcus there's not really a lot you can do about now is there.”

His eyes danced to Shannon's again, this time finding it hard to suppress an amused smile.

“ I didn't say you were a child, but sometimes you sure can act like one.” With that Shannon turned and headed back towards the door.

Marcus snorted then covered it as Jenny shot him a look that would have frozen ice.

“ God sometimes I wonder what the fuck I'm doing helping them again Marcus.” She kicked out at the dirt on the roof. Turning she stopped seeing the grin on his face. “ What the hell are you grinning at?”

His grin widened. “ You're attracted to her.”

Her mouth fell open. “ I am not.”

“ Ohhhhhhhhhh yes you are.”

She clammed her mouth shut. “ Marcus, this isn't what this is about.”

He laughed. “ So you're not denying it now then.”

“ Marcus please.” Her body shivered.

His amusement vanished. “ Hey, I'm sorry.” Taking her hand he gave it a squeeze. “ If it helps I like her too.”

Jenny couldn't help it she smiled and then blushed. “ There's a lot to like.”

He laughed. “ Come on, let's go see how big her pout is.”

Jenny chuckled. “ She is just inside the door waiting.”

He looked at her slightly surprised. “ You can sense her that much?”

She nodded. “ And before you ask no she doesn't have any clue she gives off that much emotional vibes.”

“ You know she has some sort of psychic ability don't you.”

“ Well duh Marcus.”

His laugh this time was deep. “ Precognitive?”

“ I think so, she gets feelings… but Marcus she doesn't know and I don't think she every will want too. “

He nodded seriously. “ Yea don't think she would see it as a strength would she.”

“ Hell no.”

His eye darted sideways to her. “ You could have warned me before I touched her.”

This time she grinned, looping her arm through his. “ Now where would have been the fun in that.”

He laughed. Then both of them headed towards the stairs and the waiting glowering detective.



Shannon looked up for the third time too the two sitting and talking on the couch. She was wondering how she had gotten talked into letting Marcus accompany them to the hotel room. Scowling she returned her attention to her gun, cleaning it yet again for no reason other than to stop herself from giving into the pissed off feeling of loosing control of the whole situation. She glanced up as the psychic's laughter interrupted her thoughts. Some of the anger left her as she studied the look on the psychic's face. It was relaxed, totally relaxed and at ease. A flash of memory of the night by the sea entered the detectives' mind. A smile pulled at the corner of her mouth without asking permission. The smile vanished as Marcus's laugh now joined. Scowling again Shannon's eyes dipped to his hands, which had once again touched the psychic without permission. Inhaling deeply she slammed the magazine back into place, sliding the breech back to engage the first bullet in the chamber, then clicked the safety into place and returned the gun to its holster under her arm.

All three looked up as a knock at the door sounded. Then the psychics and Marcus's eyes went to her.

“ It's Jane.” She smiled as she went to the door. Opening it, but her hand stayed on the gun at her hip until she was sure. Stepping back she let her through, then let her eyes track up and down the hallway before returning to the room and closing and locking the door.

“ Any problems?”

Jane looked up from placing the four pizza boxes and six pack of soda on the table. “ Nope… none all clear.”

Shannon nodded going to the window letting her eyes look over the street below. “ ok, take what you want then go back to the room…”

Jane licked her fingers of pizza, pulling open two of the boxes and mixing the slices up. Taking a bite of one she was already moving to the door. “ Got ya.”

Shannon went back to the door letting her out. When she turned back Jenny and Marcus were already back on the couch talking with pizza in their hands.

Grinding her teeth, Shannon lifted a slice and a soda from the table and moved back towards the kitchen. As she passed Bud looked up at her, then his eyes went over to his mistress, with a sigh he returned his chin to his paws.

Marcus eyes were also following the detective, Jenny looking up catching it then turned her head, finding the detective now sitting in a chair by the window her blue eyes fixed out into the night.

“ Doe's she always cut herself off like that?”

Marcus's voice pulled her attention back. “ I don't think I'm the one you should be asking about that.”

He smiled. “ Hmmm maybe not. You still the hermit on the island?” he sat back.

Jenny snorted a laugh. “ Something like that yes.”

Marcus just nodded. “ I'm surprised you're here you know.”

Jenny took a bite of the pizza. “ She asked.”

Marcus's eyes went to the detective briefly before returning to his friend. “ yea, that's what she said.”

“ You didn't believe her right?”

He shrugged. “ Well you're here so…” he grinned letting the word trail off.

Smiling she wiped her hands on the napkin. “ Remember we used to talk about things…”

His brow furrowed. “Things?”

“ Essences that can't be ignored.”

He nodded understanding now what she meant. “ Yes I remember.”

“ She has one.” Jenny's eyes didn't meet his and her voice was low.

“ Ah.” His eyes went to the detective again. “ Is it a past scar, or one that hasn't happened yet?” his gaze dipped to Jenny's as he saw her sniffed.

She sighed. “ I don't know. But it's mixed with this case.”

Marcus inhaled sharply. “ The man that is doing this Jenny will know soon that your involved, you do know that right?”

Green transparent eyes flashed up at him. “ I'm not stupid.”

Marcus cocked his head, ignoring the anger. “ Yet you still choose to leave the island and help her.”

Jenny swallowed calming herself. “ As I said an essence I couldn't ignore.”

He quirked a mirroring smile to hers. “ Can't have helped that she was a hottie too. Is she gay?”

Jenny's mouth fell open, her face flushing. “ I … um… I ... Jesus… Marcus!”

Marcus head went back as he laughed.

Shannon's head jerked around to the sound, wondering what so damn funny this time.



The night began, seeping darkness across the neon land. Shadows playing again in nooks and crannies of the city. The Tooth Fairy had scared most into staying off the streets. But life still had to go on for most. Uneasiness seemed to settle over the coming and goings of the normal vibration of night life. Where locked doors before were forgotten, this time they were in forced. Even the usual street life seemed to group together in hope of safety. Those that didn't have anyone to help scurried in fear in hope of finding a haven.

He watched, he saw and he smiled. To him this was his doing his power. He was in control. The puppets were his to move, he liked that. The puppet master seemed a much better name then the tooth fairy. His eyes dipped to the newspaper again. A finger running almost lovingly over the headline. He smiled. His eyes going to the woman tied behind him. Rising, he paused for a moment, inhaling the musk of fear that filled the air. Turning, he ran his hand over his bare chest, smiling at the wide eyes of the woman as he approached, reaching across for the knife his grin expanded. His power now was absolute and crackling around him.



“ You don't like Marcus much do you?”

Shannon started slightly, the room had been silent since they had gone to bed twenty minutes ago, after finally getting Marcus to leave. She looked up from her laid out position on the couch, across the room to the psychic who was sitting up looking at her from the bed.

“ I don't know him.” She hit the pillow under her head, trying to get comfortable.

“ Ahuh. You don't. I do and you can trust him.”

Shannon starred at the ceiling. “ If you say so.” Biting back what she really wanted to say.

Jenny sighed. “ I do.” She ran her hands down over Buds coat. “ Why don't you like him?”

“ I didn't say I didn't like him, what I said was I didn't know him, and when I don't know someone I don't trust.”

Jenny shifted down to get comfortable, propping her head on her hand to look across at the detective, once again she didn't need to be a psychic to sense the growing annoyance coming across the room at her. “ Would it help you if I told you how I know him?”

This time Shannon eyes left the ceiling, moving onto her side. “ It would answer some question I guess.”

Jenny hid her smile, seeing the curiosity replace the annoyance. “ We went to collage together. He was one of the first I actually told about my talents and it turns out I was the first he told about his.”

Shannon waited, when the woman stayed silent, her eyebrow rose. “ That's it? That's all I get?”

Jenny looked up. “ Isn't that enough?”

Shannon was about to lose it, then she caught a twinkle in the greens eyes watching her. “ You're playing with me.”

Jenny's smiled widened. “ A little.”

The detective shifted, not sure at all if she liked that. “ Why?”

This time Jenny laughed. “ Because you're so easy to tease and besides you looked like you needed a laugh.”

“ Do I look like I'm laughing Jenny.” She folded her arms returning her back flat to the couch and her gaze to lock on the ceiling. Missing the hurt expression flash across green eyes.

“ No, I'm sorry.” She too laid back, her eyes going to the ceiling, the only movement her hand through bud's fur.

Silence followed only the sound of a dog deep in sleep pin pricking into it.

Jenny listened to the uneven breathing from the detective, closing her eyes she made a decision.

“ Marcus and I were lovers.”

Shannon 's eyes popped open, but she said nothing. Even though her brain was already giving her images she really didn't like. She ground her teeth.

“ But we soon realized we were better as friends, I didn't lie, we met in collage and we discovered we both had abilities. He helped a lot, making me understand what I could do wasn't a curse or bad, but more...'' she took a breath. ‘' …Well more a blessing. I'm not talking about god or any outside power bestowing a miracle upon me. It was just turned into what I could do was special. He showed me that Shannon . He let me discover that it was just me… who I am… he stopped me going insane in so many ways, and gave me a friendship that didn't ask for anything.”

Silence took over again. As Shannon was about to speak, the psychics voice started again.

“ We went our separate ways after collage but whenever I was lost I would go to him again… no matter what he was doing he was always there Shannon . When he got lost I was there for him. It's the way we are. We may not see each other for years, but when we do its like time hasn't moved. After….”

The psychics voice broke slightly followed by a long swallow.

“ … After the D.C. case went so wrong he came looking for me, but even he couldn't reach me.'' She swallowed then looked up with a bitter smile on her face. ‘' But he did take me to the island and made sure everything was sorted as I disappeared from the world. He made sure I was safe.'' The smile changed to a calmer one. ‘' I haven't seen him since that night.”

In the darkness Shannon heard the mattress of the bed shift, knowing that Jenny was sitting up again. She tried to understand why Jenny was telling her this now. No answer came, but she felt an over whelming surge of the trust being given.

“ I trust him Shannon because he has never once in the years I've known him let me down or given me reason not too… please trust my judgement on this, because I think we need him.”

Shannon sat up looking over to the shadowed sitting figure. “ Need him?”

“ Yes… I've got so much screwed up shit in my head that I think I'm missing things… I'm finding it hard to control my own fear being out here, off the island.” She inhaled calming her thoughts. “ Marcus doesn't have that hanging over his head. “

Shannon swung her legs over the sofa, now sitting. Running both hands back through her hair. “ I don't understand any of this Jenny. I'm sorry I wish I did.''

Shannon fell silent as her mind tried to work out what now was becoming a truth. Jenny had some sort of power, what it was Shannon still didn't know. But she couldn't deny the fact it existed any longer. Taking a deep breath she locked eyes with the ones watching her.

‘' But…. Marcus does right? He truly understands.”

Jenny inhaled as blue eyes came out of the darkness to focus on her. “ Yes he does.”

Shannon nodded. “ Ok… I'll trust him… and if him coming in on the case gets this sicko off the streets then I'll welcome Marcus with open arms.”

Jenny hitched a breath, suddenly emotion getting too much for her. “ Thank you.”

Shannon shrugged returning to lie down. “ You've already told him you needed him anyway?”

Jenny's voice was a whisper, almost sad. “ I didn't have too he already knew.”

Shannon nodded as she broke eye contact, wondering why hearing that suddenly hurt? And more to the point made her feel jealous.

The silence was between then again.

‘'Goodnight Jenny.''

Jenny's eyes tracked to her in the darkness. ‘' Night Shannon.''



Jane looked sideways at Marcus standing next to her, shifting she let her gaze go back to area around, keeping the two figures and dog up ahead in her vision.

“ I make you nervous?”

Jane resisted the urge to jump, as his voice seemed to be right in her ear. “ Really?”

Marcus kept his grin under control letting his eyes take in the woman. “ Yes. Is it that you don't know me? Or the fact I have spooky powers?”

She turned her head, seeing his hands dance comically around as he said the word “ spooky.” She just stared at him. “ No, I think it's the fact your weird.”

He laughed. “ Well that's true.” He wiggled his eyebrows.

She stared at him then shook her head before looking away. “ God you're weird.” Her eyes went back to the area.

He chuckled. “ So what do you think of Jenny.” He watched her closely, seeing the officer shift.

“ She's ok, the boss likes her.”

Marcus's gaze went to the two looking over the crime scene. “ Yes I know she does… have you known Shannon long?”

Jane shrugged as she put a stick of gum in her mouth, chewing as she spoke. “ About five years, I've worked on cases before with her. She's sharp knows her stuff.”

Marcus's interest peeked, his eyes going to the detective as she stooped to look at something. “ You don't mix with her out side of the job though?”

“ Nah, She isn't one for mixing work with her home life.” She popped a bubble.

“ But you trust her?”

Jane's head turned fast to him. “ With my life.”

Marcus's smiled. “ I think I knew that.”

His smile suddenly threw her for a moment, realizing it was the first genuine one she had seen from him. She shrugged again, returning her mouth to chewing the gum. “ Then why ask.” With that she pushed away from the tree and began to walk the area.

He followed her for a while until he felt Jenny starring at him, turning he smiled at her, which Jenny returned. His face went serious as felt the strong emotion of jealousy. Then he realized it wasn't coming from Jenny, his eyes shifted to see the detective suddenly look away. A wry smile came to his face as he headed towards them, catching the fact as he approached that Jenny was looking now at the detective with a frown.

“ So, any luck?” he looked to both of them.

“ Not really, he brought the victim here. Forensic got it right, he used a car to dump the body in the alley. “ She looked around. “ it's perfect for blind spots.”

Marcus nodded. “ I agree. Any hits?”

Jenny shook her head. “ No, but…” she walked forward a few steps. “ This one made him mad. I'm not sure why…” she directed her question to Shannon. “ Was there anything about the body that didn't make sense?”

“ Not really… No major signs of struggle… I.V. marks like the rest. P3 found in the system…” her brow creased as she tried to remember. “ They did have a problem finding the original injection mark, I mean they found a few.”

Marcus and Jenny looked at each other before looking at Shannon again. It was Marcus who spoke, slightly confused.” You mean he couldn't find a vein? Was she an Addict?”

“ No, a diabetic.”

Jenny inhaled sharply. “ That's it that's what made him mad. He didn't know, not till he took her… she was tainted, she wasn't pure. That's why he dumped her in the shadows. She didn't deserve to be part of his art. It disgusted him.”

“ So he raped her before he found out. Boy that must have pissed him off. “ Shannon let out a dry disgusted laugh, totally missing the psychic pale.

Marcus glared at her. “ Something like that yea.” Placing his hand on Jenny's shoulder he steered her back towards the car.

Shannon stood there unsure what she just missed, then she caught the pained look on the psychics face as she turned away. She was about to say something, when Marcus's eyes locked on her again. She clamped her mouth shut. Jane's voice in her ear piece stopped her saying something she would regret.

“ Boss, are we moving out?”

She started walking towards the car. “ Get back to the car.”

“ Understood.”

By the time she reached the car, Jenny was already strapped in next to her, while Marcus sat in the back stroking Bud across his lap.

“ Where too? That was the last victim… I mean…” she pulled on her sunglasses.

Jenny flashed her a knowing look. “ I know what you mean… Can we go back to the first place, by the lake.”

“ Why? Do you think you missed something?”

“ I don't think so, but I want Marcus to look it over.”

Shannon bit her tongue and inhaled, starting the car. “ Fine.”

Marcus looked up from the back seat not missing the tone. Jenny didn't miss it either she turned her head to him giving him a not so sure smile.

Shannon talked into her mike. “ We're going back to the lake, keep close.”

“ Don't worry boss I got your back.”

For some reason Shannon looked up to her rearview and stared at Marcus who was watching her. The rest of the car journey was in silence.


Shannon couldn't figure out why she was so pissed off, all she knew was that was the way she had woken up. She put it down to the fact every muscle in her body had complained at sleeping on the couch. But as the morning had progressed the muscle ache had left her, but still the anger remained. She knew it was that anger that had come out at the other crime scene and caused her to make the comment about the rape. Just reminding herself of that left a bitter taste in her mouth. When she finally realized it had effected Jenny on the car journey to here by what she said she felt even worse. But still she couldn't shake herself of the bad mood, and she finally figured it was the fact she was now having to trust an outsider on the case. Her eyes focused again as her thoughts brought her to the present. She felt her mood darken again as her eyes went to Marcus. Why the hell did she have a problem with him so much? Besides the fact here they were wasting time going over the first victims area yet again. Crossing her arms she lent back against the tree, her blue boring holes into him.

“ You said you would give him a chance.”

Shannon tensed, exhaling slowly she made her self relax and turn. “ I am.”

“ By being hostile?” Jenny tilted her head, trying to understand what Shannon's problem was. She had watched from the other side of the woods, as Shannon's face had become grimmer and grimmer the whole time they were there. At first she put it down to the fact Shannon was just being the protective police officer on a case. But the more she studied her, the more she realized her problem was directly with Marcus as a person. “ Shannon?”

Shannon exhaled this time through gritted teeth, pushing away from the tree as she began to walk past. “ I said I'd give him a chance Jenny, I didn't say I had to like him while doing it. Give me a break will ya, he's your friend not mine.”

About to reach out Jenny stopped herself looking down at her own hand as if somehow it had become alien. She was going to touch her? The sudden feeling of shock robbed her thoughts of the biting returned remark. Quickly she shoved her hand into the jacket she was wearing.

“ You ok?” Marcus looked first at her then across to the retreating form of the detective as he approached, stopping when he reached his friend.

Jenny gave a small smile seeing the soft hazel eyes fill with concern. “She's driving me nuts, but beside that nothing new. You?”

He gave a frustrated exhale, his eyes now moving around the area. “Nothing. Whoever this is, he sure knows how to avoid touching things. As far as I can tell not one part of his skin came into contact with anything around here.”

Jenny nodded, and then her face lit up a little as an idea sparked. “Marcus what if I could get you authority to touch one of the shrouds?”

His eyes jumped up and within them a light bounced to and fro, like a kiddy being given a present. “No shit?”

Her gaze flicked briefly to Shannon's form then back to him, answering his smile. “Yes no shit.” Her eyes went to the detective again, wondering how she was going to take the idea.

On the walk back to the cars, Jenny instructed Marcus to go ahead, it was then she approached the detective with the idea.


Jenny rubbed her temple, wondering if this was such a good idea after all. Taking a breath she calmed her automatic impulse to shout back, instead she kept her voice calm. “What part of it sounds like a joke Shannon? I want Marcus to be given access to the shrouds.”

Shannon looked sharply over to Marcus who was leaning against the car. “Did he put you up to this?”

Jenny blinked. “What? Shannon? Why would he do that?”

“How the hell do I know… maybe publishing when we catch the killer.”

“Shannon….” Jenny took another long cleansing breath. “This isn't a game ok. It's not about royalties or book deals or even selling a damn story to the paper… For one Marcus isn't like that. “

Shannon scoffed.

“I know you don't believe in the talents either he or I have, but whether you believe them is a mute point.” She squared her shoulders. “I believe I was given full access to whatever I needed on this case with no bullshit…. Do I have to contact Captain Grieves to get this?” as she said it she wished she hadn't as she watched Shannon's face flush scarlet. Her voice dropping to a tone Jenny hadn't heard before.

“That won't be necessary Miss Newton. I'll make arrangements for the evidence to be made available.”

Jenny stepped back as the wave of hurt hit her so hard it cut the air in her lungs. Totally caught off guard she quickly erected a wall to the emotion as they followed its source away as Shannon stomped from her towards the car, leaving her standing alone.

“What the hell just happened?” Her hoarse question wasn't loud enough for any of the others to hear, she looked down as Bud “ raaffft ” at her. Bending down she ruffled his fur, confused green eyes coming up to see Shannon get into the car and slam the door.

Shannon's hands gripped the steering wheel till the point they turned white. Closing her eyes kicked herself, once again she had lost control, what the hell was wrong with her, this wasn't her. Normally everything was controlled she was controlled. Soothing whatever it was she finally opened her eyes, her hands releasing the wheel. Flexing them she sat back. She knew what Jenny had asked for wasn't too much to ask. Running her hands back through her hair she let out a loud breath.

Marcus looked first to the detective in the car, turning when he heard Jenny approach. “Took it well I see.”

Jenny smiled. “Could say that.”

His face grew serious. “Can I ask a question?”

She nodded. “Sure.”

“Is she normal this out of control of her emotions?” His head tilted to indicate the direction of the car.

Jenny shook her head, tucking both hands deep into her pockets. “No.”


She looked up at him. “What?”

He looked at her about to laugh, then his face fell. “Jenny you do know what's happening don't you…. I mean to her?”


He inhaled. “She's feeding off you Jenny.”

Her mouth opened to speak then paused, it snapped shut. Her eyes darting to the car which held the detective. “Oh my god.”

“You really didn't know?”

“No, no of course not… Jesus.” She ran her hand back through her hair, suddenly it all made sense.

“I thought because you knew she had some sort of ability you would have erected a wall to that?” he looked at her genuine surprise showing on his face.

Suddenly she realized what he was really asking. “Marcus…. Shannon and I aren't lovers.”

“Wha… I thought?” he stuttered.

Jenny kept her gaze anywhere but on him. “I know.”

This time he turned his eyes going to the car, and then finally he turned back. “Then how is she able to feed off your raw emotions like that? I've never, I mean…” his voice trailed off in confusion.

Jenny took a breath. “I don't know…it's never happened like this before, I mean with someone I'm not intimate with….” She blushed. Her mind was a turmoil trying to work out how this was possible. Part of her wanted to go right then back to the island to calm.

Marcus watched her, seeing the panic start to rise. “Jenny you have to tell her what's going on. She probably thinks she's going nuts right now.”

She tensed, but didn't speak.

Marcus took a small step forward, his voice gentle now. “Jen, it isn't fair to her.”

“She isn't going to like It.” She swallowed hard, trying to fight back the panic of wanting to run away.

“I know.”

Pushing everything around her away, she focused. Finally she looked directly at him. “Fine I'll do it.”

He smiled slightly. “I could.”

Jenny snorted. “Somehow Marcus I don't think right now that's a good idea.”

He gave a short laugh, scratching his temple, his eyes dancing in amusement. “Probably not, she's armed.”

When she laughed she held the feeling close, then smiling at him. “Thank you.”

His eyebrows rose. “For?”

“Seeing what I couldn't and helping me not run back to my hermits cave.”

He grabbed her pulling her into a hug. “Oh don't thank me, I'm doing it all for my own good, I kinda got tired of daggers sticking out of my back today.”

She hugged him closer letting his scent, his essence seep into the coldness within her. “I know I'm sorry for that.”

Laughing he stepped back. “Don't be… now I know why… go on go tell her. I'll take buddy boy for a walk.”

Jenny swallowed while she nodded then headed to the car, stopping briefly to look back at him. Erecting a full wall this time she pulled open the door quickly moving inside to sit.

Shannon looked up surprised.

“Hi.” Jenny smiled.

“I'm sorry…. I don't know what's up with me today Jenny… you were right, it isn't a problem for him to see the shrouds… I mean...” Shannon sat back, her eyes going anywhere but at the psychic. “I don't know what's up with me today.”

Jenny bit her lip. “I think I do.”

Blue eyes locked on her. “You do?”

Jenny nodded, about to speak she suddenly released she didn't know how to explain it. “This is kinda hard to explain.”

Shannon frowned. “It is?”

“It's me Shannon.”

“You?” the detectives frown deepened.

“Yes…. When I'm using my talent I erect walls…. I have to concentrate on what I'm doing. My focus is outside of me...”

The frown was now replaced by a complete look of not understanding one word.

“I push my emotions away Shannon.”

Shannon just blankly looked at her.

“Shit, I'm not explaining it right… Shannon everything you felt today was because of me, anything you had an emotion on today was intensified by my emotions, and they fed on it. “

Shannon blinked. Suddenly getting an uneasy feeling in her stomach. “ Fed on it?”

Jenny caught the tension that suddenly raked through the detective's body. “Inside I'm so angry Shannon…. At him, at this whole situation.'' She inhaled. ‘'At the loss of life, but most of all at my world being invaded.”

For a moment true anger rose in the psychic's voice. Then with a deep inhale her voice returned to normal. “I can't have that emotion right now, it taints everything, rules every single thing I have inside me. It destroys my control. So I push it away, erect those walls I told you about.” She sighed heavily before meeting the detective's confused eyes. “My emotions fueled yours, it, well it made whatever you're feeling, gets amplified.”

“How is that possible?”

Jenny prepared herself for what she knew was coming. “Because you are open to it…. More so than others.”

Shannon moved back in the seat, her blue widening. “What? How?”

Jenny sighed. “Does it matter how… they just are, you just are. It's like the feeling you get when you know someone is close… or those feeling you get that tells you something isn't right. “

“I'm not like you or him?” Shannon scoffed.

Jenny let the comment pass. “I know I didn't say you were… what I'm saying is that you're more open to it.” Jenny decided now wasn't a good time to mention it usual only happened to people she was involved with. “I'm sorry if I'd known I would have made sure I protected you… it's kinda my fault.”

Shannon looked out of the windscreen for a long moment, and then looked back over to her. “So all this anger I felt today and bad mood is because of your emotions… does that mean you've been pissed all day.”

If Jenny had been with anyone else she would have laughed out loud. “No, it doesn't work like that. You may feed off my emotions but it's not the emotions I have…. It's your emotions, you may have been slight pissed off as you put it this morning… something small that annoyed you…. But being around my open emotions all day and mixing with them would have intensified yours to what you're feeling now.”

“So I'm not out of control.” Shannon sighed in relief.

“Oh Shannon.” Jenny's voice was full of regret. “I'm sorry.”

Suspicious blue eyes came back around to her. “You can fix this right?”

Jenny nodded. “I'm already fixing it.”

Shannon could feel it too; somehow the anger that had been building all day began to simply disappear. She let out another long sigh feeling her natural calm take its place. “Thank you.”

Jenny looked back at her. “You're thanking me for what? Jesus Shannon I nearly drove you nuts.”

“This is what you meant about getting close to people wasn't it?”

Shannon's question caught her totally by surprise. Finally she pulled herself together enough to answer. “One of them yes.”

Shannon just nodded. “I think I need to apologize to Marcus.”

Jenny smiled. “You don't need too; he was the one that figured it out.”

“He did?”

“Ahuh… he asked me if you were normal this out of control.”


Jenny laughed at the look on Shannon's face. Then her face softened. “I am sorry.”

Shannon shrugged. “How can you be sorry if you didn't know you were doing it?”

“I…. Well I should have realized. It's happened before and I promised you back at the house that this wouldn't happen again.”

Shannon just nodded. “Look…. I can't say I liked it Jenny… I'm not usually that out of control, but… it wasn't like it was your fault and now we know right, it won't happen again.”

They both jumped as bud jumped up at the side window. They looked at each other and laughed. Jenny broke eye contact first and opened the door allowing her dog to jump in. then Marcus's head appeared.

Grinning over to Shannon he spoke. “Still wanna shoot me?”

Jenny laughed, while Shannon just blushed. “Um …. No.”

“Marcus shut up and get in.”

His grin increased, and then he got in. “Well had to make sure. We're cool right?”

Shannon nodded, starting the car. Her face still blushing at the fact Marcus knew what she was thinking all morning. “Yea were cool… just a misunderstanding that's sorted now. No problem.”

She looked over just in time to catch the grateful smile on the psychics face. Returning her gaze to the road she pulled the RV out, it was then it hit her, she'd actually believed what Jenny had just explained, and if she believed that, didn't it mean she had to believe the rest?


The return to the island took the remaining light of the day. This time they returned with one more addition, Marcus. Shannon still viewed him as an outsider, but without the anger clouding her judgment, she found herself easily liking him. The journey back had been a quiet one. Jenny had been elsewhere in her mind going over the essences she had tapped into looking for missed threads or clues. Marcus had sat in the back napping, his hand constantly connecting with Bud.

Shannon was caught up in her own question, she glanced across at the psychic, as her mind filled with the realization she actually believed in her powers, whatever they were. That thought made her uneasy, yet at the same time one that seemed to settle somewhere in her body and warm it. Could it be possible, could a power like that exist? Her attention went back to the sea around as they crossed the last obstacle to reach the island. If ‘the essence' existed did that mean god did? Or ghosts. She scratched her temple, leaning her head back and closing her eyes, feeling her bodies need for sleep. Her thoughts drifted again. She wasn't a god believer; she'd seen too many things to tell her otherwise. She'd been brought up catholic, but she'd lost sight of faith the day she walked in on her first child murder. She shivered slightly as the image of her first case filled her mind. She swallowed heavily.

“Shannon you ok?”

The detective broke from her thoughts as the psychics voice spoke, she blinked her eyes open, turning her head seeing the questioning gaze, and something else there that Shannon couldn't put a finger on. “Yeah.”

Jenny has sensed the distress; it had torn into her void and pulled her out of it. She'd turned her gaze from the window, seeing the tension. “You sure?”

Shannon sat up, shaking herself out of it. “I'm sure, but thanks.”

Jenny blinked, not sure if the detective knew she had just read her emotions, albeit by mistake. “I … I didn't mean to.” She let her voice trail off.

Shannon shrugged. “Doesn't worry about it I'm getting use it. “ As she said it she knew it was true, she was. Part of her was beginning to like that Jenny could read her. She felt Jenny shift forward; she broke the next question by starting the car and turning her attention to the ferry gate as they docked. “Forget it Jens. Let's get you home and safe.”

Jenny stared, then she was aware of amusement, she turned her head giving Marcus a glare. He chuckled, closing his eyes once again.


They entered the house almost like a tired defeated army. Shannon immediately checked out the rooms and contacted the safe house for a report.

Jenny just sank on to the sofa, Marcus by her side. “I feel like shit.” She let out a long deep sigh, feeling the familiar surroundings seep into her tattered nerves and calm them.

Marcus grunted putting his feet up on the coffee table. “Yeah I bet. You ok in her though?” his knuckled breezed across her temples.

She closed her eyes. “Getting there.”

He just nodded. His eyes followed Shannon as she moved through the house checking things. “Doesn't she ever get tired?”

Jenny's eyes opened following the figure in question. “I don't think she knows how to stop.”

“Bet you could teach her.” His answer was an elbow to the ribs. He grinned. “She's jealous of me you know.” He kept the part back of the fact of he wasn't sure Shannon knew she was.

Jenny looked at him sharply. “No she's not, she doesn't know you. She trusts you because I asked her too. Stop looking for things that aren't there.”

He stiffened. “Sorry.”

She relaxed, sighing. “No I'm sorry.” She squeezed his arm. “I'm tired. I'm cranky and I don't like being away from here. I'm going to bed. Whatever question she has can wait till morning.” She rose.

“Um…. Jen?”

She paused looking back.

“Where am I sleeping exactly?” he sheepishly looked over to her bedroom.

“Shit, I hadn't thought of that.” She bit her lip looking to the guestroom then over to the small sofa.

“I could bunk with you?”

Her eyes widened. “I so don't think so.”

He laughed. “Well I can't bunk with her; she'll suffocate me in my sleep.”

“Marcus.” Even though her tone was stern she still couldn't hide the smile.

“So tell me then. Where?”

“Where what?” Shannon frowned, always getting the feeling she was walking in on something with these two.

They both turned to her. She noted Jenny looked suddenly nervous. She repeated her question, placing the packing box full of food she just collected from the car down on the kitchen table. ‘'So, Where what?''

Marcus gave Jenny a brief look, seeing she wasn't going to speak. He grinned over to the Detective. “Where do I get to sleep?”

Shannon stopped in her tracks on the way back to the door, she turned slowly, surprised.

Jenny blushed as she caught the half gaze Shannon made to her bedroom.

She didn't know why, but she blushed. “Um no.” She shot Marcus a look as she heard him snort.

“Oh.” Shannon felt the heat of her own blush and a surprising sense of relief.

Marcus as per usual found himself looking at both of them in turn and trying not to roll his eyes. “ Sooooooo where?” He rose stretching out his back.

“He can stay at the safe house, Jane can take care of him and I know it's a larger house then this.” Shannon looked to Jenny to make sure it was ok.

Jenny nodded almost in relief. “Sounds good. You won't be too far away.” She smiled over to him.

“Oh. Jane I like her.”

Jenny rolled her eyes. ‘'Marcus behave. She's armed.''

He snorted.

Shannon had that off balanced feeling again, she didn't like it one bit. “I'll take him over now. Make sure he knows the rules.”

Marcus frowned. “Rules?” He looked over to Jenny who shrugged. Then he realized the detective had already moved from the house. He quickly reached across drawing Jenny into a hug. “If you need me call ok? I got my cell use her phone.”

Jenny held on to the embrace for a moment longer. “I will. “

Before drawing away Marcus whispered in her ear. “She's glad to have you all to herself again.”

Jenny stepped back looking in squarely in the eyes, her voice sharp. “You read her?”

He flushed. “Kinda hard not to Jen.'' He sighed heavily. ‘'Her damn essence is all over this room. I get a hit just standing on the same floorboards as her.”

Jenny's eyes darkened. “I don't care. Don't do it again.”

He swallowed, realizing he'd stepped way over the line. “I won't again.” With a last hug he moved towards the door, looking out seeing the detective waiting not so patiently by the gate. Well aware she'd put herself in a place where she could see in and where he was at all times. He looked back.


She looked up.

His face was serious, a worried crease on his brow. “Find out if she's seriously interested before you open to her to far okay. I don't think she'd understand how much you'd lose on a one night stand.”

Her mouth opened to protest but he was already gone. She snapped it shut. Closing herself down her moved to the bedroom. Not acknowledging his words, because right now she couldn't handle the outcome.


When Shannon returned she felt disappointed Jenny had already gone to bed. She wasn't really surprised, settling in Marcus had taken longer then she wanted. Mostly because of Marcus's reaction at being told he couldn't just come across to the beach house whenever he liked. She wasn't exactly sure why, but him seemed to rub her completely up the wrong way. She yawned, stretching out her body. She was tired, but she felt too uptight to sleep. Making her mind up her decided tea was the answer. Moving to the kitchen she turned on the kettle. When she heard the click of the bedroom door opening she turned, hiding the smile at the disheveled shape emerging.

“Hi… Sorry, did I wake you?”

Jenny shook her head, yawning. “No, Bud did… I forgot to let him out before I went in.” she moved to the door, allowing the dog access to the beach.

The kettle clicked off. Shannon turned. “Tea?”

“Hmm, sounds good.” Jenny glanced down at her watch, noticing two hours had gone by, looking up in question. “What took you so long?”

Shannon poured the hot water into the pot. “Your friend Marcus doesn't like rules do him?”

Jenny chuckled. “Um no… what did he do?”

Shannon shook her head, turning to grin at Jenny. “I told him he can't just come over here on his own all the time.”

Jenny yawned again sitting back. “I'm guessing you had a good reason for telling him that?”

Shannon's attention went back to the tea making, filling two mugs. “I did yes…. Milk? Sugar?”

“One lump and little milk… which were?”

“The safe house is just that. Having people coming here and then going back there makes an easy target for someone watching us… When I go I make sure I'm not followed.” She stirred the tea.

Jenny tensed, the statement bringing her back to the whole situation. When she finally relaxed and looked up Shannon was standing holding out the mug of tea. Waiting. Jenny smiled taking it. “Thank you and that makes sense.''

Shannon answered the smile, before turning to sit on the sofa, relaxing back into it. She looked away as she caught an outline against the doorway, relaxing when she saw it was the Bud. “He really is a good dog.”

Jenny turned her head smiling as she saw him run past the doorway in pursuit of something scurrying in the dark. “Yes he is, he's saved me from much more then loneliness. I never will be able to thank Marcus enough.”

Shannon quickly switched her gaze to the psychic. “Marcus?”

Jenny turned back smiling. “He brought me Bud. Marcus's brother trains police dogs, bud was one of his. He brought him two years ago.”

Shannon brain added up the dates. Right after D.C. “ah, that explains the need to attack my socks.” She saw the change in the psychic, watching as stern lines vanished and softened as she laughed.

“Ahuh.” Jenny held the mug in both hands enjoying the warmth, and she had to admit the company. She sipped, and then she became aware she was being starred at, she looked up. “Something wrong?”

Shannon blinked, looking away. “What? No… sorry.”

Jenny didn't break her stare. “Out with it some things on your mind?”

Shannon sighed. “Well, it's your eyes, I mean. “ She cursed herself inwardly at being caught.

Jenny waited. “What about them?”

“They change color. I … well I didn't notice before.”

Jenny sat back with a smile, sipping her tea, watching Shannon over the rim. “Too?”

Shannon shifted uncomfortably. “Emerald right now. Earlier they were more transparent jade.” She swallowed a mouthful of tea then wished she hadn't as the heat hit her tongue.

“You don't find them... freaky?”

Shannon's eyes snapped up. Half-coughing as she spoke, her throat letting her know it wasn't happy with the heated tea either. “No, no… not at all.” She swallowed. “I think they're amazing.”

Jenny wasn't prepared for the honesty. She blushed then looked down into her mug. “Um, thank you.”

Shannon hoped the blush she wore could be blamed on the hot tea. She cleared her throat. “You're welcome.”

Jenny glanced over her shoulder as bud came in his eyes downcast. She smiled somewhat grateful he hadn't caught whatever he had been chasing. She rose closing the door. Returning she looked over to the detective, who was looking anywhere but at her? She had to bit her lip to keep from laughing. But as she studied the woman in front of her the laughter faded, she saw the dark rings under her eyes; saw the slouch of her shoulders. “Aren't you tired Shannon?”

Shannon flopped back, suddenly feeling every inch of her body scream in answer. “Exhausted.”

“Why don't you try and get some sleep?” it suddenly made Jenny sad Shannon pushed her body like this and didn't seem to care what it did to her.

“Because I can't sleep.” Reaching forward Shannon placed the mug on the coffee table. “My mind doesn't shut up. Another reason I live alone. Nocturnal habits don't go down well on partners.”

Jenny looked over, curious as to what the word partner truly meant. “No I don't suppose it does. “ She tried to hide a yawn.

“It's easier to stay up late when no one's along to nag.” She picked up her tea again, this time sipping it.

Jenny eyebrow rose. “You got nagged a lot did you?” A teasing tone came into her voice.

Shannon smirked. “I've had my fair share, as I said I'm not easy to live with.”

“Hmmm I think you did it on purpose detective.” Shannon's eyes shot up and for a moment Jenny was convinced she'd stepped over a line. “I'm soaring….”

Shannon's waved hand silenced her. “Forget it, you're right I did. It's easy I suppose to get out of relationships by throwing myself into work.”

Jenny looked down. “I'm still sorry I had no right to say it.”

Shannon eyes softened from the steel they were before. “Forget it. I shouldn't be mad at the truth.…'' She gave a gentle smile. ‘' You're just smarter that's all to figure it out.'' Shannon looked down into her mug. ‘' Go sleep you're more exhausted then I am. I'll take a look around, and then I promise I'll go and get some rest.”

Jenny felt a sense of relief. But she still wanted to kick herself she could feel the air change with Shannon's sadness. “No. It's ok I'm not that sleepy yet. Don't you have questions about today?”

Shannon shook her head, rubbing her eyes briefly. “No, not now. I wouldn't take it in; I'd only have to ask you to repeat it tomorrow.”

“Boy you must be tired.” Jenny forced to keep her words light.

Shannon chuckled. “You have no idea.”

“I think I do. “

Shannon looked over; pulled by the serious hushed tone the psychic had spoken in, the tone spoke of pain, of fear and most of all understanding. Shannon gave a soft smile. “Yea I think you do.”

Jenny just gave a nod.

“But it is late and the shrouds will be here the first ferry over.” Shannon raised picking up both empty mugs.

“You arranged it?”

“You asked for them remember I called the captain before we left, he's only sending two though.”

Jenny nodded; hiding her surprise it had been that easy. “Thank you.”

Shannon turned, leading back against the sink, she shrugged. “No need to thank me I'm here to help.”

Jenny smiled, rising as she did so. “Goodnight Shannon .” She moved to the bedroom calling bud. She paused, turning to Shannon . “Sleep well.”

Shannon nodded. “You too.” She watched until the door closed. Turning back she quickly began rinsing the mugs clean.

Her anger had come quickly when Jenny had hit the nail on the head with her life. She knew her first reaction was because she'd thought the psychic had been reading her again. But as she'd looked up and met the unsure gaze she'd realized it had come from the fact Jenny was beginning to know her. Shannon didn't know which unsettled her more, the psychic's powers and her believing in them, or the fact the woman had gotten that close to knowing her in such a short space of time. She'd had relationships where no one had gotten close enough to understand her all.

As she dried her hands her gaze shifted to the closed bedroom door. Her mind racing with everything that had happened in the last week, including the case. Shaking her head, she checked her gun and headed outside to patrol over the area.


When Shannon came back, her mind was still going over every single detail of the case, knowing sleep wasn't going to come soon, she unpacked her laptop, undressing before getting into bed she laid the laptop on her lap, powering it up. Logging on to the police mainframe she went through the files until she came across the one she wanted and there in the light of the screen she started going through the file labeled. “Jenny Newton ….. D.C.” reading from the beginning had been hard, until she shut out her personal emotion of anger and pain at reading what had happened to the psychic. She switched herself over to cop mode, as she continued.

After twenty minutes she paused in her reading, frowning at something that didn't make sense. She wasn't sure what she was on to but something triggered in her mind. She opened two other files going over the names in them, still unsure she cross referenced another name. Finding nothing she looked up, starring at the wall as if it would give her the answer. Somewhere in her mind a thought or idea, taunted and pulled. A connection was there she was sure of it. A connection to D.C and who?

In disgust she logged off the mainframe, slamming the lid shut throwing the room now into darkness. Placing the laptop on the side table she lay back, pulling the cover up over her chest, resting her arm under her head. She starred at the ceiling. Her mind trying to find the thread of thought she'd found. Her brain was still trying to do that when sleep finally caught up to her and pulled her to its realm.


Sunlight pure and strong filled the bay area, the storm long gone. The wind held the crisp touch of a fading summer. While the sea itself tossed white caps to each wave.

Shannon hadn't been surprised when she awoke with the need to run. The sleep hadn't really done anything except give her brain and body a high buzz of nervous energy. She lengthened her strides increasing her speed over the sand, winding up for the last five minutes of cool down before she reached the house. A grin played on her lips as she felt the cooler wind on her skin.

For once her mind was calm, it hadn't stopped thinking as she'd run the length of the beach, but it hadn't raised anymore questions either. She jogged to a stop on the top of a dune, bending her left leg up to stretch the muscle, her eyes going around the area. She stilled for a moment, the hair on her arms prickling. She kept up the appearance of stretching, but now her eyes were taking in the surrounding area with mapped detail.

She saw him, the reason for her uneasiness. A figure was walking away from her. She realized he must have been on the far side of the dune to her right. He would have been out of sight the whole time she had been running on the beach. If she hadn't stopped she wouldn't ever have seen him. She deliberately turned her back, pushing down the instinct of fear at leaving herself so exposed, resuming her jog.

She knew the layout of each dune on the beach, she should, and she'd mapped it enough. Knowing this, she increased her strides aiming for the bunch of three ahead of her. As soon as she cleared it's rise and was heading down into the dip, she fell flat to ground, taking the impact on to her arms, rolling quickly up on to her feet. She followed the course of the ridge knowing he couldn't see her now the dune height was in his view. Increasing her strides into a flat out run she traveled the edge of the dune until she knew she would be behind him. Slowing down as she pulled her gun from the holster.

Keeping her breathing level she listened. Letting the sounds of the sea and surf fade away. Her head tilted as she caught the faintest sounds of someone running and stressed breathing. She made her way up the dune, keeping her body low to the sand; reaching the top she could see him now.

He was standing stretched, trying to see where she had gone. She took in his appearance, looking for any sign of a weapon or if anyone was with him.

When she was sure it was clear, she rose on the ridge directly behind him.

‘' Keep your hands where I can see them. I'm a police officer and armed.''

He tensed, and then slowly his arms started to rise. ‘' Do…. Don't shoot.''

She walked down the dune, gun leveled at him. Her eyes scanning quickly around for any sign of another threat. Her attention went back to the figure below. ‘' Turn around. Slowly.''

He shifted, stumbling slightly before coming around to face her. Sweat drenched his dark hair and shirt.

She looked him up and down, seeing the camera hanging around his neck. She relaxed slightly, not seeing or feeling any real threat now. Now she allowed the anger to show, realizing what he was. ‘' Who are you and why were you following me?''

‘' I'm John Edwards, I…. I work for the Boston Mail.''

Shannon bit down at the sudden rush of dread. Somehow the press had found out Jenny was involved. ‘' You have I.D.?''

He nodded, his hand going to his back pocket, which slowed as blue eyes locked him. ‘' It's in my back pocket.''

Shannon nodded. ‘' Slowly. I haven't killed anyone today so I'm kinda tense.'' She gave him a feral grin.

He swallowed, pulling his wallet free, he tossed it over.

Shannon flipped it open, lowering her eyes briefly from him, reading the ID which confirmed what he said; she closed it tossing it back. Returning her gun to her back. ‘' So, I ask again why were you following me?''

He let out a held breath now the gun was away, running his hand back through his hair. ‘' You're the detective working the Tooth fairy case. I was on holiday here, I recognized you. I saw you running about two days ago.'' He swallowed hard at the skeptical look she was giving him. ‘' I know it sounds dumb, believe me I know.''

Shannon crossed her arms saying nothing, just giving him a stare.

That made him more nervous. ‘' Look, it was a dump idea. But, well I thought I could get some shots of you and sell them back to the paper. You know, the main detective on the case on holiday while the tooth fairy is out there.''

Shannon still stood silent, her eyes showing her anger.

‘' You don't believe me?''

Shannon quirk an eyebrow. ‘' Would you?''

He smiled nervously. ‘' No, I guess I wouldn't either. But I ain't lying. My father in law owns a house on the East Side of the island. I'm down here with my wife and son. We got here about a week ago. You can check that out.''

‘' Oh I will.'' She took three strides towards him before he could do anything she pulled the camera off his neck.

‘' Hey.'' He moved forward but was stopped by a stare. ‘' You can't take that.''

Shannon tucked it into her waistband. ‘' I just did.''

‘' I can report you.''

She crossed her arms again. ‘' Go right ahead, you obviously know my name and precinct number. Make sure to thank my captain for this holiday.''

He glared at her. ‘' Freedom of the press you forget about that law?''

‘' Stalking is a better one, as of yet freedom of the press don't get you jailed.''

He swallowed hard. ‘' Jesus. I wasn't stalking you.''

‘' Really. So what do you call tailing be for the last week?''

He blinked. ‘' What? I only saw you two days ago and you weren't around the beach running yesterday, so how the fuck have I been tailing you for a week.''

Her eyes narrowed as she tried to read him, his brown eyes stared back at her. ‘' You weren't watching me from the pier the day after the storm?''

‘' Hell no, I was too busy cleaning the damn beachfront to get the boat out. Spent nearly the whole day doing it.''

She relaxed, she believed him. But that didn't ease the danger of having him around and catching sight of Jenny and figuring out who she was. She steeled her eyes and stepped up close to him again, ignoring the almost comically act of him backing away and losing his footing in the sand.

His eyes widened as he watched the woman in front of him change.

‘‘Here's the deal. You leave the island; I don't want to see you anywhere around this side of the beach. I do, I'm gonna pull you in and slap you so fast in jail you're not even gonna have time to complain about it. I have had two holidays in my entire life and finally I get one damn fucking one and I get you.''

She poked him in the chest. He sat down hard on his butt.

‘' And let me tell you something else. I hear one word on any network or paper about how a top cop takes it easy while a murder runs lose, I'm going to find you and make sure you spend the night in the can with a lovely man I know named Mistress Patricia!''

The photographer's eyes widened again.

‘' You get me?''

‘' You…. Uuu can't…. Can't threaten me like this for fucks sake.''

Shannon grinned. ‘' I just did. Now your option is to either believe I can do what I said or not. Your choice.'' She shrugged.

John looked around for any chance of escape.

Shannon stepped back, well aware of what he was thinking... ‘'Your choice.''

He bolted, turning back as he moved away. ‘' I'll be off the island by tomorrow….'' Then he turned and fled but not before yelling back when he was far enough away. ‘' Fucking psycho bitch.''

Shannon's grin expanded, watching him run and tumble over the top of the ridge. ‘' Take care now.''

She almost wanted to chuckle, but the seriousness of the situation made her curse instead. When she was sure he wasn't going to circle back and was in fact still running away from her, she headed back up the beach, as she did so she pulled the radio from her waist band.

‘' We have a problem. I'm on the way to the safe house.''

Jane's voice came back. ‘' Copy that. You need assistance boss?''

‘' No. I'll be there in ten.''

‘' Understood.''

Shannon replaced the radio, increasing her strides as she headed for the safe house.


Shannon was sitting sipping her OJ. Twenty minutes had passed since she'd given Jane and Richard the full update. Each of them now were running down the journalist's I.D. The other under cover's on the island were now watching him and taping his phones. The camera was already on the way to the mainland precinct. So far the information the journalist had given her seemed to be true. Just a bad case of luck.

Shannon glanced over at Marcus who was reading a book; he looked up sensing her gaze. ‘' You don't know whether to tell her or not do you?''

Shannon inhaled, ‘' were you reading me?''

‘' No. I can't do that remember. Unless I touch something of yours. Even then I couldn't read your mind.'' He quirked an amused smile. ‘' Besides, I'd be asking myself the same question.'' He sat back watching her carefully. ‘' You know you talk as if you believe what Jenny and I have is real?''

‘'You both think it's real.'' She shrugged.

He hid his smile. ‘'And you don't?''

She exhaled as she stood. Finishing the last of the OJ in her glass. ‘' I don't know what I believe about anything right now.''

‘' Well that's better than a doubting Thomas.''

She looked quickly to him; slowly a smile crept on her face. ‘' Yeah I guess it is.''

He sighed heavily. ‘' Unfortunately you have to tell her.''

‘' What good would it do, this guy is checking out. There isn't a threat to her.''

‘' Yet.'' He placed the book down rising. ‘' Look, you and I both know sooner or later someone is going to hear about Jenny being involved. She's high profile, not easily forgotten. Some desk jock is gonna see a name; hear it off a cop mouthing off in a bar about how the ‘spooky' lady is back. Come on Detective; don't treat her like some spook you're using. She has feeling for god's sake. She isn't just another one of the people you use and then toss away....''

He turned quickly, his own anger showing. He stopped dead. He couldn't help the long swallow he took. The stare leveled at him had its own power, but what scared him more was the pure rage crackling the atmosphere around even his limited talent could pick up on. He took a step back.

Jane entered, about to speak. She looked at both of them. Clearing her throat. ‘' Um, boss? The guy left the island about ten minutes ago, along with his family. I've got Jesse and Dave tailing him when he hits the main land. You want me to tell them to pick him up?''

Shannon relaxed the tension in her jaw. Her eyes never leaving Marcus as she answered Jane. ‘'No. Just tail him. Find out who he talks too or meets. Standard surveillance.'' Realizing her fists were clenched she slowly opened them, catching the relief in Marcus's eyes.

Jane nodded. ‘' Will do. You ok boss?''

Shannon finally broke her stare, reaching down she picked up her radio. Moving past Jane she gusted up the browns police woman's hair. ‘' Yea fine.''

Both jumped as the front door was slammed hard enough to rattle the cups in the kitchen.

Marcus let himself sit, questioning how his legs had held him upright for so long. ‘'Jesus.''

Jane turned her gaze to him, eyes narrowing. ‘' What did you say to her?''

Marcus exhaled, running shaking hands through his hair, trying to calm himself. ‘'Apparently something really really stupid.''

‘' Why do I get the feeling you do that to a lot to people.'' She scoffed, about to turn away.

‘' Jane?''

She looked back. ‘' Yea.''

His brow creased, trying to remember exactly what he said, why her reaction had been so fierce. Something clicked inside him, he swallowed, his voice coming out slightly hoarse as he realized what he'd just done. ‘' She lost someone didn't she. Who helped in a case? Someone she brought into it?''

Jane frowned. ‘' That's none of your business now is it.''

He sighed, feeling like a complete basterd. ‘' No I guess it's not. But it explains why she nearly just ripped my head off.''

Jane blinked. ‘' What?'' He looked up, and once again Jane was caught by the genuine look in his eyes, it threw her. ‘' She wouldn't have done that.''

‘'Maybe not. But she wanted too.'' He focused inward getting control of himself. Now, he was worried. Worried about who exactly was guarding his friend and what she was capable of. ‘' Who was it?''

Jane was about to fob him off and walk away. Then his eyes caught her again. She chewed her lip as she debated whether to trust him or not. Then she relaxed. ‘' It was a nineteen-year-old hooker. She went undercover, trying to lead us to a pimp who was dealing in underage girls. Cindy contacted Shannon she had a lead. By the time we found her even her own mother had trouble identifying her. Shannon wouldn't let the case drop till she caught the basterd.''

Marcus nodded. ‘' And she did didn't she.''

Jane smirked. ‘' Oh yea she did. It's what help made her want to be a detective. ''

Marcus looked up surprised. ‘' She was a beat cop at the time?''

‘' She was twenty-one. She made detective at twenty-seven. One of the youngest. Whatever you said to her she didn't deserve it.''

‘' I know. How did she know Cindy?''

Jane's eyes narrowed. ‘' Now that is none of your business.''

Marcus watched as Jane walked away into the kitchen. Making a choice he reached over lifting his spare cell phone, punching in a number. Knowing if either Shannon or Jenny found out what he was about to do, he was going to be in serious trouble.

‘' Hey…. Yea it's Marcus I'd like a favor. Thanks. Ok, I need anything you know about a Detective Shannon Rhimes. Keys Pd. And a crime victim named Cindy. Would have happened about twelve years ago. … No, no last name. It was involving hookers and a takedown of a big named pimp. Rhimes was a beat cop at the time. No. I want to know how Rhimes and Cindy were connected. ‘' he laughed. ‘' Yea I know I don't ask much. But you always like a challenge. ASAP ok. Thanks, Contact me via my email ok. Thanks again I owe ya. ‘' He closed the cell.


Jenny looked up as Shannon entered. She didn't say anything just watched as the detective stomped past and slammed the bedroom door. Finishing the sip of tea she looked down at bud that was looking up at her with which she imagined was the same kind of look she wore.

‘' Guess the run didn't go well.''

Bud woofed a scoff.

Both their heads turned as the bedroom door opened again.

Shannon walked in buttoning up the clean shirt. Looking up to find herself starred. ‘' What?''

‘'Something wrong?'' Jenny sat back. She wasn't sure asking was going to get her anywhere.

Shannon was about to say no, she paused, remembering what Marcus had said. ‘' Yea. There is.''

Jenny stiffened, not liking the look in Shannon's eyes. She placed her cup down aware her hand was trembling, she clenched to her lap. ‘' How bad?''

She looked down.

Running her hand through her hair Shannon sat. ‘'I found a reporter on the island. He was following me. He's been checked out and it seems it was just a coincidence. He recognized me and decided I was worth a story. He doesn't seem to know anything about you and your involvement in this.''

Jenny's hand dipped to buds coat as she felt him shift closer. Needing the calm he always gave her. Also knowing his fur would hide the fact her hand was almost shaking to bits. ‘' Do you believe it, or are you just saying this for my benefit.'' Her eyes were still fixed to the floor.

Shannon looked over quickly, catching the fear in the voice. ‘'I believe it. I told you once I wouldn't lie to you. I meant it.''

Jenny inhaled deeply, clearing her throat. Thankful to feel her heart rate return to normal. Taking a breath she finally looked up, needing to see Shannon's eye to know if this was the truth.

Shannon kept her gaze steady.

Finally Jenny nodded. Relaxing slightly. She saw something else in those amazing blue eyes too. She gave a small smile. ‘' But you nearly didn't tell me?''

Shannon smiled. ‘' Yea.''

‘' Isn't an omission just as much as a lie detective.''

Shannon's smile now creased the corner of her mouth, glad that color had returned to the psychics face and the teasing tone had returned. ‘' Yes I believe that's what they say. ‘'

‘' I'm glad you told me. I can't say I'm surprised. It's going to happen sooner or later.'' Jenny suddenly needed space, she rose.

‘' I told you I'd take care of it. No one is going to know you're involved in this case. I will keep you safe Jenny.''

Jenny looked back over her shoulder frowning at the intensity of the pledge just given. She wondered what else had happened to upset the detective. ‘' I believe you believe that. I however know better.''

Shannon was about to protest but Jenny was already moving into her bedroom. She looked down at bud as the door closed with a click.

Bud looked up at her, brown eyes expressive as always.

Shannon stroked him. ‘' I will protect her boy. No matter what.''

He licked her hand nuzzling into it.

Shannon dipped down and hugged him. ‘' I promise.''


Jenny wasn't sure what scared her more when she entered the bedroom. She was scared on so many levels right now. She was scared of being in the public eye once again and knowing her past would be raked up, especially the terror of D.C. She was scared that the Tooth Fairy would now know who was going to be his nemesis. It would eventually make her his target. It always did. Maybe she had gotten away with it this time, but she knew deep down it was only a matter of time before it did all happen that way.

She was also scared for Shannon, she knew somehow Shannon was linked to this case, her essence screamed it at her the first day they met. Jenny couldn't even go near what exactly that meant because usually it wasn't a good outcome. Even thinking that turned her insides into knots.

Like she was on automatic she quickly showered and changed, trying to stop the fear from winning and sending her running somewhere to hide. But where the hell could she go? This was her hidden place. She should never have exposed herself to this again. Never should have let the detective stay here.

She sat on the bed, her face going into her hands. She had no where now. Nowhere to run. She was tired inside, ached. All of it pressed on her like a heavy iron skin. She willed herself to erect walls, but even those couldn't help as the fear was inside her. How can you guard against something that is already behind your defenses?

She heard bud barking somewhere out on the beach. She wondered why he wasn't with her. Didn't he know she needed him right now? Was she losing him too along with everything else? She heard another bark, and then heard Shannon call out to him. Shannon's voice, strong, certain, Protective, safe. She concentrated on the sound. Hearing a bark of laughter this time from the detective and Bud's yelp of surprise. She wondered what the Shannon had done to him now. She'd seen their antics before, she'd been caught watching them many times in play, but as soon as Shannon looked at her, Jenny would smile and leave.

Without even knowing it Jenny was smiling at the memories and as she did tiny threads of her courage reformed within her. Something about this woman seemed to pull at her, she knew it wasn't just the essence, it was attraction, something she hadn't craved for two years, and if she was totally honest with herself it had been a lot longer before that. She shook her head, as she rose.

‘'I so don't need this.''

She looked in the mirror, smoothing down her wet hair, noticing she wasn't as pale anymore. Her skin held the first touch of tan in two years. Her eyes too looked different. She peered closer. They didn't look as lifeless, their somewhere the transparent depths glimmered small a touch of life. She turned her head to the drawn curtains as heard Buds bark again, and Shannon's yell of his name. Turning back to the mirror she gasped as she saw the small glimmer in her eye's spark at the sound, knowing why they did and because of who. She slowly closed her eyes looking away.


Taking a deep breath, composing herself she erected every wall she could find. Satisfied she opened the door stepping back into the real world and the pull of a woman she hardly knew, but couldn't resist.

Looking around she heard Bud barking again outside, in mid step she paused long enough to pull her sunglasses off the table and put them on and she stepped into the sunlight. She stopped dead. Her eyes falling on Shannon, or more to the point Shannon's rear end, encased in very tight khaki shorts. Jenny swallowed, taking in the scene. The detective was bent lifting a large pile of shifting planks in her arms. For a moment, Jenny let herself absorb the muscles straining and skin, and legs oh yes lots of leg, well-defined legs. Muscular from all the runs the woman took. Legs that went all the way back up to the high cut shorts and the nicely toned but….

She snapped her eyes away. So much for the damn walls . She brought her eyes back, this time looking to see what Shannon was actually doing. She spoke amazed to find her voice still worked. ‘'Um…. What are you doing?''

Shannon froze in her motion, ducking her head to see through her legs. ‘‘Fixing your fence.''

‘'Why?'' Jenny had to bite her lip to not laugh out loud at the picture, Shannon's reddening face upside down with her ponytail hanging straight down, it's swaying tip sweeping the sand.

‘‘It needed fixing and I needed something to do.'' Shannon straightened.

Jenny's amusement sobered, something was wrong. ‘'Did it occur to you I might like broken fences?''

Shannon stared, trying to fathom if Jenny was serious. ‘'Do you?''

Instead of answering Jenny walked towards her, looking down at the wood. ‘‘Where did you get this?''

Shannon still wasn't entirely sure Jenny wasn't pissed at her. ‘‘It was around the back in the shed.''

Jenny frowned, and then it cleared. ‘‘Oh…. Last year. I had a handy man repair some storm damage to the roof, he mentioned he'd cut some for the fences. I'd forgotten about it.''

‘'So, it's okay?''

Jenny looked up at the uncertain tone in the woman's voice. ‘'Sure. You don't have to do this you know.''

Shannon shrugged relieved she hadn't over stepped. ‘'As I said I needed something to do.''

Jenny studied her face, seeing that something was defiantly wrong. ‘'You okay?''

Shannon sighed, almost angrily. ‘‘Yes. What does everyone keep asking me that.'' She turned away walking to the other side of the garden and dumping the wood down with a thud.

Jenny's eyebrows rose. ‘‘Hey.''

Shannon turned back. ‘'What?''

Jenny didn't say anything just stared, waiting.

Shannon looked away to the sea, then exhaling she looked back. ‘'Sorry. Marcus pissed me off this morning.''

Jenny still just stood there watching her.

‘‘He said something that, well, it got to me.''

‘'What did he say?''

Shannon looked back out to the sea. ‘‘Doesn't matter. I shouldn't have let it get to me.''

Jenny took a step closer well aware her hand was itching to touch the detective, she fought it down. Stopping in front of her. ‘'What did he say?'' Jenny watched as Shannon's jaw clenched and unclenched. She knew she was fighting with whether to tell her. Suddenly it was very important for her to know exactly what had happened. ‘'Please tell me?''

Shannon exhaled. ‘‘He accused me of just using you as means to an end and not giving a shit what happens to you.''

Jenny inhaled sharply, not at the words Marcus had spoken, but the pure cascade of pain that smashed into her senses.

Shannon looked quickly at her. ‘'He only said it because he's worried and what this is all doing to you. He was angry about the reporter getting this close. Hell so was I.' She angrily rubbed her hands together to get rid of the dirt from the planks. She tucked her hands in her pockets, needing for them to be somewhere. ‘‘Anyway it hit a nerve.''

Jenny knew she should leave it. Just turn away and go into the house and get back to the case. But she couldn't, couldn't leave knowing something her friend had spoke in anger and caused so much pain to the woman in front of her. She found herself asking what was in her head. ‘'Why did it?''

Shannon looked up surprised, half expecting Jenny to back off. Suddenly she wished she could see Jenny's eyes, and know why she was asking. But she couldn't, all she could see was herself reflected back in mirror lens. What she saw she didn't like. Disgusted she turned away. ‘'Doesn't matter. Forget it.''

Jenny's brows knitted. ‘'Shannon?….''

Shannon closed her eyes, she was finding it near impossible to ignore the plead call of her name spoken like that. It wasn't the first time she'd questioned how Jenny could put so much into just saying her name. It was almost like she had touched her skin. She clenched her jaw; she wasn't ready to share her past. ‘'It doesn't matter.'' She bent lifting the wood and moved away to finish what she'd started on the fencing. Well aware that disappointed eyes followed her.

Jenny watched her for a few more minutes before returning to the house. What should she have expected? Shannon to suddenly open herself up to her? Too share something that was obviously painful? She almost scoffed at the absurdity of it; she wasn't exactly sharing things now was she. She was still cursing herself as she entered the den and went back to working the case. Turning all her attention now something she knew and could handle. Something that didn't need fucking emotions. She was totally unaware of the anger spreading inside, as her attention focused on the case.


‘'You know I'd forgotten how engrossed you get when you work.''

Jenny jumped as Marcus's voice came from behind her. ‘'Marcus!''

He stepped into the den, looking around, walking up to the wall containing the victim's profiles. He whistled impressed before sheepishly turning to look at her. ‘'Sorry.''

Jenny shrugged, rubbing at her neck. ‘'What are you doing here; I thought you weren't allowed here till the shrouds came at 12. Where's Shannon?''

He crossed his arms, clearly amused. ‘‘She went to the dock, and for your information it's gone twelve, in fact it's nearly two.''

Jenny eyes dropped to her wristwatch in surprise. ‘'Damn.''

He moved over, pushing her hand away and began to gently massage her neck. ‘'Always lose time don't ya.'' He tried to hide his worry.

Her head tipped forward in bliss. ‘‘Oh god. Left.''

He grinned and complied too the instruction. ‘‘Haven't lost my touch then?''

She groaned as his fingers hit a sensitive spot. ‘' No.'' She groaned again. ‘'Harder.''

He chuckled, continuing the massage until he felt the muscle start to loosen. He lent down to whisper against her ear. ‘'Did you know you have a brand new fence surrounding your cave?'' He laughed stepping back from her aimed slap, moving to the front and sitting on the edge of the desk. He couldn't help the smug look on his face; he folded his arms, more than amused. ‘'What's it like having your very own handy woman around? Anything else she's handy at?''

Jenny knew the tone and wasn't going to bite. ‘‘Shannon wanted something to do.'' She rose moving towards the living room irritated at what he was implying, then she remembered exactly why Shannon was doing the fence. She stopped turning back. ‘'Why did you say that to her earlier?''

His eyes widened the amused grin vanishing, he sighed dipping his eyes. ‘'She told you then.''

‘‘Well she didn't come running over here tattle tailing if that's what you think. I saw she was upset. I asked why.'' She moved closer to him.

‘'Why Marcus, why say something like that? We're you that pissed off at her over this stupid reporter? It's not like she has control of the damn island. I'm the one who wouldn't go somewhere safer. It's not like you.''

He pushed off the desk. ‘‘I know that. I'm mad at the fact this whole situation fucking sucks, especially putting you in shit like this again.'' He took a breath calming himself. ‘‘She just got the flack. Okay.''

She shook her head sadly. ‘‘Well whatever the reason you hurt her. I don't believe she's using me. I'm in this because I agreed. I knew the risks.''

His face fell. ‘'I know. If I thought it would make a difference I'd apologize, but somehow I don't think it would work.''

‘‘Maybe you should anyway.''

His mouth quirked. ‘‘Maybe.''

She studied him, seeing something else. ‘'What aren't you telling me?''

He shifted, slightly nervous. ‘‘You're not going to like it.''

‘‘Try me.''

He sighed. Moving away from her. ‘'I called in a favor, I checked up on her.''

‘'You did what?!'' her eyes flared, along with her temper.

He winced. ‘' Okay calm down. Let me explain before you kill me.''

Jenny took a calming breath, answering through gritted teeth. ‘‘Tell me?''

‘‘Look you've got to understand why I did it. I saw something that scared the shit out of me okay.'' He shifted nervously.

Jenny waited, folding her arms to keep from slapping him silly.

‘‘She lost it earlier. I mean totally lost it, I thought she was going to grab me and throw me through the damn wall.''

‘‘But she didn't''

He looked at her, his eyes narrowing, feeling slightly hurt she was taking the detectives side. ‘‘Obviously. I'm still here. Maybe you'd like it better if she did. You seem to think I'm the bad guy here?''

‘'You know better than that.'' Her voice was a warning one.

‘‘I didn't like what I saw Jenny. Hell, we don't even know who she really is? What she's capable of? So, I wanted to find out a little more. She's guarding you for Christ sake, I needed to know you'd be safe.''

Jenny fought the urge to yell at him. Keeping down her temper, knowing he would only do it out of protection. But she didn't like it. ‘'You should have trusted my judgment enough to know she isn't a threat. She trusted my judgment when it came to you.''

He eyed her wearily, keeping his thoughts to himself. He thought Shannon was the biggest threat to his friend then anything she'd met before. ‘'I know I should have trusted you and I did, until this morning. I needed to know Jen. Me!'' he sighed calming himself. ‘'I'm sorry. Okay. I'm sorry. I had to find out.'' His face showed his misery.

Jenny sighed as well. Shaking her head. ‘'Marcus I know I don't always look like I can take care of myself and your friendship means a lot. I can never ever repay how you helped me. But, I don't like this. I understand why, but I don't. Please don't do something like this again.

He nodded sadly. ‘'I get it. But I can't promise you I won't do something you don't like again, when it comes to your safety I'm sorry I'll do anything to make sure your safe. So, sue me.''

Her shoulders lost their stiffness. Suddenly being at odds with him was too much. ‘'What would be the point you have no money. I'll wait till you're famous.''

He looked up through shy eyes, his face slowly cracking a grin. ‘'I'm I forgiven?''

She snorted. ‘'Don't push it.'' But she smiled to take the sting out of her words. ‘'You found out about her past didn't you?''


Jenny battled with curiosity, caught between wanting to know exactly what the vision was of Shannon being shot. But also knowing she couldn't betray Shannon's trust by finding out from him. ‘'I don't like it. But I can understand why you did it.''

He exhaled in relief. ‘‘Thank you. I found out why she reacted the way she did.'' He looked down feeling again like a basterd. ‘'There was a woman in her past, Cindy, she was involved in a case with Shan….''


He looked up at her surprise.

‘'I don't want to know. Just tell me are you satisfied now? I'm not going to have to put up with this bullshit every time she reacts?''

He clamped his mouth shut, feeling the sting. ‘‘No you're not and Yea. I'm satisfied.'' He looked at her, seeing how unguarded she'd become. Realization dawn. He felt his insides crawl. ‘'Aw shit Jenny you've already started to let her in haven't you?''

The question caught her completely unprepared, she was surprised to feel unexplained tears suddenly start. She angrily swept them away. ‘' I don't seem to have any say in the matter.''

He didn't care if he got hit or not, he could see the struggle of the words spoken and the cost of admitting it. He moved forward and swept her into his arms into a hug. ‘‘Hey. It'll be okay.''

She clung to him, wondering why everything she knew was unraveling, including herself.


Shannon paused at the door, seeing Marcus sitting on the couch reading, her eyes moved to Jenny sitting at the table eating, she could see Jenny had been crying, she frowned.

Marcus looked up, looking first to Shannon then who she was looking at. He rose. Seeing how ridged Jenny was sitting. He turned his full attention to Shannon. ‘‘Hey. Did you get them?''

Shannon snapped his eyes to him. ‘'I said I would.'' She moved past him towards the den.

Marcus sighed, his eyes going to Jenny who was glaring at him. He held up his hands. ‘‘Okay okay I'll fix it.'' Steeling himself he moved towards the den. ‘'Shannon?''

Shannon didn't bother to stop what she was doing. ‘'What?''

Marcus took a breath. ‘'I apologize.''

This time Shannon stopped, turning. ‘‘For what?''

‘‘For what I said. I had no right too. More to the point I shouldn't have directed my anger at you. You're only trying to help catch this basterd and you're doing your darndest to protect her. None of it was your fault. I am sorry for what I said and I don't think for one minute your using her.''

Shannon wanted to tell him to go to hell, but she was actually pissed off to find he actually meant it. ‘'I'm not using her.''

He met her steeled stare. ‘'I know.''

She broke the stare. ‘‘Okay. Forget it.''

Jenny stood in the doorway hearing the whole thing. Seeing Marcus's lost look of what to do now directed at her. ‘'Shouldn't we get back to why we're all here.'' She pushed off the doorframe moving to the new evidence that had arrived. The shrouds.

Shannon nodded pulling the tagged bag free. ‘‘Sure.''

Marcus gave Jenny a grateful look as she past him.

Shannon was unsure how this was going to work. ‘‘So. Um what do you do?''

Marcus smirked. ‘'I'm gonna work my voodoo.''

Jenny rolled her eyes. ‘'Marcus.''

He grinned at her. ‘'I know. I know get to work.'' He lifted the first bag, pulling it open, removing the sheet from the cellophane and placing it on the table.

Shannon stepped back, not knowing what the hell was going to happen. Hell, she wouldn't have been surprised if Marcus had pulled out chicken to sacrifice.

Jenny couldn't help the smile as she watched Marcus close his eyes and tilt his head back, biting her lip as she saw Shannon lean forward intrigued., she knew her friend was playing up for the detective, what she wasn't sure of was how Shannon was going to take it. She cleared her throat. ‘'Marcus you don't usually hum.''

‘‘Shhhhhh. It's for dramatic effect.''

Shannon flinched, aware now she'd just fallen for an act. She stiffened. ‘‘Glad to know that six murders gets you dramatic. This isn't a fucking game.'' She quickly turned and left.

Marcus eyes snapped open. ‘‘Damn. I blew it again.''

Jenny gave him an understanding look. ‘‘You know she's right.''


She leant over kissing him on the cheek. ‘'Work your voodoo. I'll be right back.''

Shannon kicked out at the sand, ducking to lift the stick bud had just dropped she threw it hard, watching as the dog hightailed after it. She stilled as she heard Jenny speak from behind her.

‘‘He wasn't trying to goad you, or fool you. It's his way of trying to break the ice and he knows this isn't a game.''

‘‘He's a joke.'' She slapped the sand away angrily on her palm.

‘‘Sometimes he is yes.'' Jenny drew level with her. ‘‘He uses humor like a guard, it deflects a lot.''

Shannon looked down to the toe of her boot, digging it in the sand. ‘'Were you in love with him?''

Jenny head snapped left so fast she felt her head spin both at the question and the movement. ‘‘Whhhhhat?''

Shannon swallowed hard. ‘‘You heard me.''

‘'Why did you ask that?''

‘'I…'' Shannon's voice faltered. ‘'I don't know.'' She frowned hard, trying to figure out why the hell she did.

Jenny studied her face, almost in wonder at the honesty she saw there. ‘‘You really don't do you.''

Finally Shannon met her gaze. ‘‘No. Were you?''

‘‘Does it matter it's the past isn't it? Shouldn't the past stay where it belongs.'' Even as she spoke the words, she wished to god it was that easy to do.

Shannon looked away. ‘‘Yea.''

Jenny turned, heading back into the house. Pausing, her hand on the frame, she looked back. ‘'Shannon I….''

Shannon forestalled anymore words. Suddenly not wanting to know.

‘'I'll be in a bit.''

Jenny stood for a moment then sighed, walking back into the house. She should have answered, she could see Shannon didn't know why she'd ask, but she could see whatever the reason it had been important to get an answer. As she walked back to the den, she started close herself down to emotion. R. It was better if she put a stop to it right now. This was a case and nothing more and as soon as it was solved she could get back to her uncomplicated life and Shannon would be gone.


Shannon was berating herself again as she stepped towards the den. Why the hell had she asked that? If she didn't know better she'd have thought it was asked out of jealousy. She shook her head. Damn it! She'd be glad when this case was over and she could get back to her balanced life.

Marcus ran his hands over the sheet again, his eyes were open now, but he wasn't looking at anything.

Shannon paused at the door, surprised to feel a chill touch her skin. She looked down at her arms expecting to see the hairs raised, but they weren't.

She looked over in question to Jenny. Who was holding her finger to her lips asking her to be quiet. Shannon stepped inside the room and lent against the wall. She watched silently.

‘‘He's so full of himself this guy.''

Shannon jumped as Marcus's words broke the ten minutes of silence.

Jenny took a careful step closer to him. ‘‘You can sense him?''

Marcus frowned. She lifted the sheet, letting his free hand trace over its surface. ‘‘Not exactly. He has touched this; in fact he's touched it a lot. It's like it's become imprinted with his ego.''

Shannon was itching to ask questions, but instead she kept silent, letting Jenny do the talking.

‘'Can you see him?''

Shannon's eyes jumped to Jenny in surprise. Then to Marcus for an answer.

‘‘No.'' Marcus's frown deepened, then with a gasp he dropped the sheet stepping back. His worried gaze went to Jenny. ‘‘He's blocking.''

Jenny inhaled sharply.

Shannon couldn't keep silent any longer. ‘‘Blocking? What the fuck does that mean?''

Jenny shot her a look. ‘'Getting angry at Marcus isn't going to help.''

Shannon jaw clenched. ‘‘Sorry.''

Marcus took a drink from the water Jenny had brought in earlier. ‘' it means, he has some sort of latent psychic ability. Only….'' He paused.

‘‘Only what?'' Shannon stepped forward.

Marcus's eyes went to her. ‘‘He doesn't know he has it.'' He resisted the urge to add. 'Just like you.'

Jenny cleared her throat, now she knew what had been niggling at her, especially the day she'd gone to the crime scene. She had been blocked. ‘‘He probably thinks its part of his power.''

Marcus nodded in agreement.

Shannon rubbed the back of her neck, suddenly very nervous. It was one thing to believe Jenny had some sort of ability it was another to believe a psycho did.

Jenny watched her careful, well aware the battle being fought in Shannon's head.

Shannon looked to the sheets. ‘‘So, this means what? You can't get a hit of it or whatever you call it? Because his blocking now. Doesn't he have to know he's being read?'' Her expression showed her confusion.

Marcus let out a sigh of frustration. ‘‘It doesn't work that way…. Look this is hard to explain. I think the easiest way is to say, when he touched these…'' he pointed the sheets. ‘'…. He made himself believe he wasn't going to leave anything on them. We all know there's no DNA. Well, that's easy. He doesn't touch it with flesh or hairs or any part of him. In his mind he was thinking the same thing. I'm not going to leave anything…. I'm not going to leave anything. Without realizing it he created a wall….'' Marcus tilted his head. ‘‘….You understand?''

Shannon's brain was trying too. ‘‘So, because he did that it actually kept his emotions away.''

Marcus smiled. ‘‘Emotions. Thoughts. Who he is. Yes.''

Shannon shook her head. ‘'I don't understand it I'm sorry. But, I'll take your word for it.''

Marcus's smile turned into a genuine grin. ‘‘Why detective that's the nicest thing you've ever said to be.'' Shannon glare only made him laugh.

Jenny seeing the angry start in Shannon's eyes stepped in between then, slightly touching Marcus's arm for his attention. ‘'Did you get anything at all?''

Seriousness swept his face. ‘'Poppies.''

Shannon looked to the sheets as if poppies would suddenly appear. ‘‘There weren't any poppies in any of the murder scenes. Forensic didn't find anything either.''

He scoffed. ‘'They aren't on them. They're to do with him.''

Jenny looked back over her shoulder to the sheets laid out on the table. She turned moving closer. ‘‘His past? Or now?''


‘‘Involved with him. Or memories?''

‘'I don't know. But it was the first thing I felt when I touched it. A field of poppies.''

‘‘It could be you picked up on his meditation thoughts.''

Shannon found herself confused again. ‘'What?''

Jenny turned to her. ‘‘Somewhere in his head, a place of peace, to focus on.''

Marcus shook his head. ‘‘No. I don't think it's an actually field either he goes to in person. But….'' He moved back to sheet, tracing his fingertips over it again. ‘‘He does look at it.''

‘‘A picture?''


Shannon could feel her frustration building. ‘'Anything else?''

Marcus voice was strained. ‘‘He's ready to kill again soon. This sheet is from his last kill. He's already picked out the next one.''

His words hit both Jenny and Shannon hard.

Shannon wanted to scream, there was no way Marcus could have known the sheet was from the last kill. They were all identical. She only knew because she'd removed the labels of the victim before bringing them here. ‘‘Shit.''

All three of them stood in desolated silence. None of them knowing what to say next.


Jenny looked over as bud entered and lay down looking exhausted. Knowing the reason why. After Marcus had dropped his bombshell, Shannon had taken him back to the safe house. Jenny had returned to the case. When Shannon had briefly returned it was announced she was going for a run. It didn't surprise Jenny, she could feel the waves of frustration coming off the woman and she'd quickly learnt running was one way for the detective to blow off steam; it was always becoming a way to get away from talking to her. She let out a long sigh, looking at Bud again in amusement at his sorrowful look.

‘'Tried to keep up with her again didn't ya.''

His eyes looked up at her. ‘'Arffff.''

She chuckled, then turned back to the case notes in front her. She'd been at it for four hours now, going back over everything, looking for any small detail she could fit together. There had been one thing she found and she could feel the excitement in her stomach from it. She needed to talk to Shannon. She sat back stretching out her back, gently she became aware of a warmth, one she began to realize was Shannon's essence. She looked up unsurprised to find Shannon in the doorway, watching her.

‘‘Hi.'' She noted Shannon looked nervous. ‘'What's up?''

‘'I… I wanted to apologize for what I asked earlier. It's really none of my business.'' Shannon looked anywhere but at her now.

‘'Okay.'' Suddenly Jenny felt very sad. She'd gotten used to having Shannon be open around her. She mentally told herself off, she was the one that wanted distance, well now she was getting it.

‘'So, We're okay?'' her eyes went to Jenny briefly before looking away again.

‘‘Yea. Were okay.'' Even as Jenny answered, she didn't believe it was true. ‘' I think I found something.''

Shannon eyes jumped up, she moved quickly over. ‘'Found what?''

Relieved they were back on a subject she could handle, Jenny pushed over the picture to Shannon.

Shannon looked at it frowning. ‘'It's the American seal?''

‘‘Yes. It's also the one common thing on all the nickels. Some have Indian heads, the other Monticello. ‘'


‘'Shannon. He used the nickel for a reason. It isn't some random coin he picked. It means something to him.''

Shannon eyes dipped to the picture again. ‘'Your saying because this is the only common thing he deliberately left, the clue you're looking for is somewhere here?''

‘'I…. Yes.''

Shannon looked up hearing the pause. ‘'You're not sure.''

‘'I'm doubting myself. I mean, I'm…''

Shannon suddenly got an insight to what Jenny was trying to say. ‘‘Because of D.C.''

Jenny flinched, then sadly whispered. ‘‘Yes. I made mistakes…. I don't want to do it again.''

Shannon nodded. ‘‘What's your Voodoo telling you right now?''

Jenny almost laughed at the choice of words, but stopped, when she saw Shannon was seriously asking her what her gift was feeling. ‘‘It tells me this is his calling card.''

Shannon shrugged, turning her gaze back to the picture. ‘'Good enough for me. So tell me what you've found?''

Jenny blinked suddenly wanting to cry at the fact; she'd just been accepted so easily and freely. Her walls she'd erected to the detective didn't stand a chance, the sudden loss of them made her feel exposed, raw.

Shannon knew she was being watched. She felt her heart rate pick up, but still she kept her eyes firmly on the picture. ‘'So? What you find?''

Jenny somehow managed to turn her attention back to the case. ‘' The number 13.''

This time Shannon looked up in question.

Jenny nodded to the picture. ‘'On the seal itself.''

Frowning Shannon brought the picture closer to see. ‘'I don't see a number?''

Jenny gave a soft smile. ‘'How many arrows is the eagle holding in his right claw as you look at him.'' She passed over a magnifying glass.

Shannon took it, leveling it over the claw. ‘'Shit. I didn't even know they were arrows…um…'' she counted. Her eyebrow rising. ‘'Jesus. There are thirteen.''

‘‘Ahuh. How many stripes on the flag on the shield at his chest.''

Shannon moved the glass there. Mentally counting. ‘‘Thirteen.'' Her voice showed her amazement.

‘'The stars above the eagles head?''

The glass moved again. Shannon looked up in wonder. ‘‘Thirteen.''

Jenny found herself grinning, the look on Shannon's face looked like a child's who'd just been showed a rabbit pulled from a hat. It made her giddy. ‘‘The olive branch in his left claw?''

Quickly Shannon's eyes dropped to the picture again, counting. ‘‘Thirteen.''

‘‘How many letters in the motto in his beak?''

Shannon counted, then laid the magnifying glass down her eyes meeting Jenny's. ‘'Thirteen.''

Jenny pushed over a list of all the victims' names. Her voice turning serious. ‘‘How many letters in each name?''

Shannon quickly counted each. ‘‘Thirteen. Jesus. You mean he picked them just because their names had thirteen letters?'' She felt sick if this was the only link they were screwed, there was no way they could guess his next victim out of the millions of people who had thirteen letters in their name.

‘'I think that's part of why they were chosen. Yes.'' Jenny knew what Shannon was feeling she'd felt the same when she found the connection. She swallowed as she watched Shannon pale.

Shannon struggled to understand. ‘‘But… but what does this mean?''

Jenny pulled six pictures free of the folder, laying them out, each one showing the victim. ‘'Do you notice anything about them?''

Shannon bit back her anger at wanting to yell for Jenny to just fucking tell her instead of testing her. But she didn't realizing this was how Jenny needed to work. She needed it because she doubted herself. ‘'The pose is the same in all of them''

Jenny waited.

Shannon studied the pictures intently. Each body showed the same pose. Body laid out, legs crossed at the ankles. Left arm bent. Hand laid on the chest with the palm down. The right arm was straight, outstretched, laid out flat along side of their head, extending up. Hand open, its palm to the sky. Shannon titled her head, looking to each picture quickly. Something didn't seem right. She felt like she was doing a puzzle where you had to spot the difference.

Jenny watched her.

Shannon made her gaze flick quickly to each. She paused, looking back over each slowly this time, her focus to the outstretched arm, more on the space between the arm and the head. It was different. She went back to victim one, then two and through to six. She quickly saw the gap between each increased. She looked up at Jenny. ‘'Their right arm position is different. He's moving it clockwise slightly on each victim. But it's barely noticeable.''

Jenny slowly nodded. ‘‘He's done the same to the legs, they've been moved clockwise on each victim too.''

Shannon looked down again, now seeing it. Her forehead creased. ‘'What does this mean? Why are they like that?''

Jenny sighed. ‘'I don't know yet. That was a far as I got. I thought at first, maybe he was using the limbs to mimic the hands on a clock…. Then I thought maybe longitude, latitude…. But the movement is too small to give a direction or map reference. It's too subtle for other things too. I thought maybe a compass point, but if it is we won't find the direction until we have more victims. The fact the movement is progressive tells me he hasn't finished showing us what he means. He's using the whole body to show us something and he isn't going to show us until he's damn well ready. '' Jenny exhaled her frustration. ‘‘But at the moment I don't have one fucking clue what.''

Shannon sympathized with the frustration. ‘'You'll get it.''

Jenny pushed her hair back from her face. ‘'But not soon enough. I'm taking too long. I'm failing.''

Shannon wanted to jump the damn desk and shake this woman. ‘‘How can you say that? We've had this case for months and no one has come up with the things you have in five days. You'll get it. I mean it. You need to take a break that's all.''

Jenny looked at her, suddenly getting angry at the expectation on the detectives face. That a break would just make everything miraculously clear. ‘‘Do you think the victim's families want me to have a break? Or the next person this sick fuck wants to rape and murder? You think he's just going to do nothing until I'm refreshed? '' Jenny's temper snapped.

Shannon jolted in surprise, not understanding where this anger directed to her was coming from. ‘'Jenny?''

Jenny snorted. ‘'You look at me as if I have all the answers. Like I'm some damn messiah. I'm not! I have to search and search for any damn little thing. This basterd leaves. Hitting dead end after dead end more times than I can fucking remember. I have to find him. I do….'' She hit her chest. ‘'…. And taking a damn break isn't going to make that happen.''

Shannon bit back her instant retort. ‘'Okay.''

Jenny moved to lift the photos, her anger making her shake, as she reached across her arm hit the glass of water sending it tumbling to a smash on the floor. ‘'GOD DAMN IT.'' She reacted with more anger, throwing her arm out across the table sweeping it, sending the files photos in every direction.

Bud yelped as a folder hit him, running for cover.

Shannon shot forward catching the laptop as it flew. Looking over to the angry figure in worry. ‘'Jenny?''

Jenny didn't hear her; she was trying to pull her broke inner self together, the anger shattering her control. She felt all the threads unravel around her mind, sending her into panic and chaos. ‘' I can't do this…. I can't do this.'' Her breath was coming in sobs. She stumbled back, tripping over the chair, landing in a heap. Her face went into her hands. ‘‘Oh god… oh god. Not again, not again.''

Shannon placed the laptop back on the table. Moving around it, feeling suddenly useless. She knelt down, keeping her voice as calm as possible. While her insides were anything but calm as she watched Jenny fall apart in front of her. ‘'Jenny?''

Jenny kept sobbing, her hands going to her temples, as old memories erupted from their locked cage. She groaned. ‘‘Make it stop. Make it stop.''

Shannon had barely heard the words. She looked down as something nudged her leg, realizing it was bud.

His eyes went to Jenny then back to her. He whined.

‘'I don't know what to do.''

He nudged her with his nose. His worried brown eyes going back to Jenny again.

Shannon looked at Jenny feeling every shudder that went through the women's small frame. She looked at bud again trying to understand.

This time bud shoved her. Shannon shifted to keep her balance.

Bud howled as Jenny suddenly started convulsing.

‘'Shit.'' Shannon didn't think, she reacted. She lunged forward grabbing the distraught woman, pulling her firmly into her arms.

Jenny tensed, bucking, seeing in her mind's eye, the gunshot the flash of color, the pain. Screams and then red. She tried to pull away, but she couldn't it was too strong.

Shannon was feeling her own panic. ‘‘Jen. Please. It's me Shannon.''

Jenny struggled for air, trying to focus; somewhere in the distance she heard the calling of her name. She arched, screaming as another shot rang out in the vision and this time she felt it dig deep into flesh. Burning her, searing her.

The sudden movement sent Shannon backward onto her butt; she locked her arms, bringing Jenny with her. An elbow came up, connecting with her mouth, she grunted in pain, spitting blood away, tightening her arms. ‘'JENNY!'' her shout came out of desperation.

Jenny froze everything inside her stopped. Slowly her mind cleared of images. Somewhere in the cold of her being she sensed warmth.
Her tiny threads scrambled towards it, gaining strength. She felt another warmth join, one she recognized, and one that calmed her. She moaned, trembling.

Shannon exhaled in relief, as Jenny stopped fighting her. She watched as the dog crawled on to her legs and virtually into Jenny's lap. Licking at her skin, her face, whimpering. Shannon felt Jenny grow even stiller.

‘‘You feel that don't you.'' Shannon was breathing hard; she lowered her chin gently resting it on Jenny's shoulder. Her words low. ‘‘Hold on to that feeling.'' She had no clue what she was saying.

Bud whimpered again, shifting to get as much contact of his body against the psychic. Shannon pulled the women closer too trying to make as much contact as possible, letting the dog lead the way of what to do. Feeling the tremors go through the suddenly frail looking woman in her arms, feeling them increase to the point they rattled Shannon's teeth. ‘'Jenny.''

Jenny inhaled sharply, her breathing stuck.

Shannon's felt it, panic started. She don't know what else to do. She twisted until she could reach Jenny's face, grabbing it. Searching for breath. Her voice was shaky with emotion. ‘‘Breathe. Come back to me.''

Bud whined.

Shannon weakly smiled. Brushing away blonde hair from the pale clammy skin. ‘'He's calling you back too. You're scaring the shit out of the both of us right now.''

Bud snorted in agreement.

Jenny's back arched as she inhaled filling her starving lungs.

Shannon exhaled her own held breath. ‘'Good. Breath okay just breath.'' She twisted back to sit, pulling Jenny as closer to her as she could. Well aware that now she was shaking far more then Jenny.

Jenny felt movement around her, sensing bud nearby, and someone else. A different warmth, one that shone, pulsed. It called her. She inhaled again, her mind coming back to her, terror receding unable fight against the silver threads that now spread. Jenny swallowed, fighting the nausea, feeling the arms around her. Safe arms. ‘'Shan….non?''

Shannon laughed, crying in relief hearing her broken name. ‘'Yea.''

She began to loosen her hold, knowing she shouldn't have touched without permission. ‘'Sorry, I shouldn't have….''

Jenny panicked feeling the warmth recede. ‘'N…No…. No.''

Shannon looked down surprised as her arms were caught and brought back, feeling the trembling grip on them as they were held close.

‘'St…ay. Nee…d.''

Shannon tightened her hold, swallowing down a huge bolt of emotion in her throat, ‘‘Sure.''

Jenny began to center herself, using the warmth from bud, and the new deeper warmth of Shannon's essence. Letting it intertwine with her. Forming a picture in her mind of a broken mirror, focusing on the broken shards that lay everywhere within her. Slowly each splintered piece began to reform, fitting together like a jigsaw into place. Till finally it was repaired. She now stood in front of the resurrected mirror, gazing at her scarred reflection. Now she could begin to re-piece herself. Bit by bit the scars began to fade.

Shannon didn't move, not knowing what to do. She didn't know either exactly what was happening. All that mattered was Jenny needed her. So she sat, with the woman cradled in her arms and the dog on top of them. Listening to every sound, knowing something was working as Jenny's breathing evened out. She became aware of something else, she could feel a deep warmth spreading, it wasn't uncomfortable or unpleasant just different. She knew it had to link to something Jenny was doing. She could feel her own tattered emotions calming. For the first time in a long time she felt a sense of peace growing. She looked down as she felt movement on her skin; Jenny's fingers were idly stroking her arm. Shannon strained to see if Jenny's eyes were open, finding them closed. She relaxed back against the table leg, enjoying the feeling of the touch. Her eyes slowly began to flutter closed.

Shannon jerked awake, groaning as she felt a twinge of cramp in her back. She blinked trying to remember where she was, looking down at the now sleeping form in her arms. She remembered all that had happened. She looked around aware the candles had burned low, working out hours had passed. Her eyes flicked to the doorway, hearing bud's claws on the wood as he entered, watching. ‘‘Hey boy. I think she's okay.''

‘'Arf'' he walked over tail wagging lazily, he went to Jenny sniffing, then when satisfied he lay at the detective's feet.

Shannon looked down to Jenny, feeling a smile begin as she saw Jenny's hand had grabbed a fist full of her shirt. Making sure she couldn't go anywhere. She felt bud watching and looked up to find if possible an amused expression on his face. Shannon's smile changed into a grimace as she felt her back twinge again, she shifted slightly to try and ease the strain.

Jenny blinked awake, feeling it. Without moving, she let her eyes try to find out where she was. They fell on her hand in front of her face and the shirt she held. She stared at it, the memory of what happened coming back. She swallowed; she couldn't remember being that lost or out of control before. Her eyes refocused on her hand and the body wrapped around her, realizing she was still in Shannon's arms. She felt her skin flush heat.

Shannon's attention left her aching back when she felt Jenny stiffen. She waited, letting Jenny lead the way.

Jenny slowly released the shirt, trying to understand why she wasn't freaking out right now. She didn't feel any panic, instead she felt…. Safe. Slowly she drew away, moving to sit, turning her head; she finally locked eyes with Shannon's apprehensive ones.

Shannon let her arms drop away. Keeping the rest of her still, gazing back into the questioning stare. She gave a weak smile. ‘'Hi.''

Jenny could see the uncertainty creeping into the blue eyes, which held hers. ‘'Hi.''

‘'You…um? You okay?''

Jenny quickly ran an inventory of herself. Surprised to find her mind and thoughts were the calmest she'd felt in a long time. There was no trace of fear. Just a deep comforting warmth. It confused her. She gave a small smile.

‘'Yes.'' Her eyes dipped to the dried blood on Shannon's lips. ‘'Did I do that?''

Shannon's licked her lips self-consciously. Wondering why Jenny wasn't scrambling to get off her. ‘'Don't worry about it, it was an accident. I've had worse in a sparring match.''

Jenny sensed the uneasiness and Shannon's own guards coming up. Suddenly she didn't want that. She smiled. ‘‘Were we sparring?''

Shannon's eyebrows rose at the teasing tone. ‘'A little.''

‘'Who won?''

‘‘Well, I'm the one with the busted lip.'' Shannon grinned, then winced as she felt the tender skin pull. Her breath caught as Jenny gentle traced a finger over her split lip.

‘'I'm sorry. I hurt you.'' Jenny drew her hand away self consciously, knowing she was confusing the hell out of the detective. Regretfully she made herself get up. With her back to Shannon she closed her eyes, allowing the feeling of touching Shannon, cascade over her. ‘'I'm going to take a shower.''

‘'Okay.'' Shannon sat there stunned, not knowing what to think. Her body was on overload, the touch to her lip had sent shivers down her spine. Her confused eyes followed Jenny till she left the room.


Jenny stood under the stream of hot water, one hand flat to the wall, bracing her up. She tilted her head back letting the liquid fall over her face, roll down her shoulders and back. She drew straight, her eyes opening, wiping back her wet hair with both hands. She knew she'd have to tell Shannon what happened. Her body was virtually humming and she knew damn well why. It wasn't just the after effect of what happened, her skin was tingling, it was coming back from its forced hibernation of not being touched. Her eyes fell to the three lined scars across her chest, and lower to the three on her stomach. Their whiteness apparent against the rest of her flushed skin. She reached down, tracing each one.

What would Shannon think of those if she ever saw them?

Jenny shook her head at that intruding thought, sending droplets of water everywhere. She knew Shannon would already know about the scars. Police reports never left anything out. She'd more than likely had seen the crime photos too. It was part of Shannon's job to know who she was working with. Case history and the person.

Jenny let her head drop again, just breathing in the warm air of the shower. Something had changed, deep inside her; she felt it, felt a part of Shannon flowing through her veins. She shivered, her nipples tightening, but not from any change in the water temperature. She closed her eyes, again tilting her face to the warmth of water. Willing her body to shut the hell up. But still her skin tingled; still she felt the heat inside her, Shannon inside her. With a groan she reached over changing the setting too cold. She squeaked as it hit.


Shannon looked up to the bathroom door for the twentieth time, this time she thought she'd heard something. She listened. Only hearing the running water. Sighing, she sat back.

She'd finally left her position in the den, when she'd gotten over the shock of being touched so freely. She moved to the living room finding herself pacing, not only because of her locked back muscle but also she didn't know what to do next. Should she wait? Should she go to bed? Leave? After half an hour of this had gone by, she had nothing but more stupid unanswerable questions; she had stopped pacing and went looking for a beer, suddenly needing a drink.

So here she sat, looking up every five minutes to the bathroom door, still hearing the shower running. It was turning out to be the longest shower in history. She took a gulp of beer from the bottle. Confused didn't even come close to how she was feeling right now. She wondered if Jenny's sudden need to take a shower was because she needed to wash away her touch. Even thinking that hurt.

She looked over to the door again, hearing the water stop. She now felt nervous. She took a long slung of beer.

Jenny ruffled bud's fur as she he jumped at her as she emerged from the bathroom; she knelt giving him a hug. ‘'Thank you.'' Her eyes came up slowly to the blue gaze she knew was watching her. ‘'Hi again.'' She smiled.

Shannon didn't know whether to stay sitting or stand. ‘‘Hi.''

Jenny grinned down at bud once more giving him one more hug. Taking a breath knowing this wasn't going to be easy she stood, walking towards Shannon, her eyes dipping to the beer. ‘‘Is there one of those left?''

Shannon moved to get up. ‘'Sure.''

‘‘It's okay I can get it.''

Nodding she sat again. She hated the nervousness she felt. ‘'So, long shower.'' She rolled her eyes at herself. Very smoooooooooth.

Jenny's mouth twitched as she pulled the beer from the icebox, removing the cap with a hiss in the opener on the outside of the chiller. ‘‘It helps me relax.'' She took a sip of beer as she walked to the chair by the fire place. She could tell Shannon was more than nervous. Well let's get this over with.

‘'We need to talk.''

Shannon stiffened, well aware what those four words usually meant. ‘‘Okay.''

Jenny looked down, picking at the label on the bottle. ‘'I broke my word.''

Shannon stared, not expecting that at all. ‘‘Huh? How?''

‘'I read you. I saw…. I saw something in your past.''

Shannon frowned, trying to decipher what she meant. ‘'When?''

Jenny picked at the label again, then took a drink. Letting the liquid slid down her throat, welcoming the coldness. The action giving her the time she needed to compose herself to continue. ‘'When you touched me…. I had no walls up Shannon. I told you anger destroys my control. I've….'' She swallowed, biting her bottom lip for a moment. ‘'…. I've been having problems for a while with shutting out my own past. This case…. Hell this week, with you here and leaving the island I've been pushing things away that finally got too much. I lost it…. I lost myself. I lost my walls….'' She took in a shuddering breath. Still unable to look up from the bottle in her hand. ‘'When you touched me I had no choice but to see.''

Shannon was quite sure how she felt. ‘‘That's what happened in there?''

Jenny nodded, not proud of the fact she had or that the detective had seen how much of a fruit loop she really was.

Shannon felt amazed, wondering how one woman could hold all of those things inside, and not be totally insane. She found herself not angry at what she was being told, but instead sad. Sad that Jenny had to do that every day alone. Sad that Jenny had to do it at all, to pay such a price for a gift.

As the silence stretched Jenny refused to look up now. Not wanting to see anger or disappointment at breaking her word. She waited for Shannon to yell and leave. She wanted to cry.

The silence stretched further.

‘‘Glad you told me, I thought you were pmsing.''

Jenny's widened eyes jumped up so fast she nearly dropped her beer. Only to find open blue eyes directed again at her and a small grin. ‘'You're not mad?''

Shannon sat back, feeling a relief go through her she didn't fully understand.

‘' How can I be mad, I'm the one who grabbed you. You told me not to touch.''

Jenny wanted to shake her head and get her thoughts in order. ‘‘Don't you understand what I'm telling you? I saw your past. I looked inside you.''

Shannon's throat went dry, then she made her eyes focus on the beer, fighting the flush. ‘'I understand. I'm just glad that holding you helped.'' This time it was Shannon who picked at the label on the bottle.

‘‘Very much so. Thank you.'' Jenny watched, still slightly stunned. Then something came to her. ‘'Didn't Bud attack you?''

Shannon chuckled. ‘‘No. It was his idea.''

Jenny looked over to her dog, who was watching both of them. ‘‘His huh?''

‘‘Oh yea. He was the smart one when I was freaking out.'' Jenny eyes came gently back to her. ‘'I… didn't know what to do to be honest.''

Jenny smiled, in understanding. ‘‘You did fine. I am sorry I freaked you though.''

‘'Does….'' Shannon looked down, shutting up.

‘‘Go on?''

‘'Doe's that happen a lot?'' her eyes flickered towards the study.

Jenny sat back now relaxing again; Shannon hadn't run for the hills. As she took a sip of beer, she remembered the night wasn't over yet. ‘'Not as much as it used too. But, never as bad as this. Well, not for a long time.''

Shannon frowned. ‘‘Did… did I make it worse moving in here? Being so close?'' she began to realize she really had no idea of the consequences of being this close to the woman and what it would do to her.

Jenny's eyes slid to the detectives, hearing the guilty tone. ‘'I'd be lying if I said no. But it wasn't just you, it's everything right now. Leaving the island wasn't good for me Shannon. I know I instigated it. But I just wasn't ready.''

Sadly Shannon nodded. Deep down she'd felt that too. ‘' I could move to the safe house.''

Jenny stopped in mid sip of her beer, coughing she lowered the bottle. ‘'Did I freak you that much?''

‘‘I was scared shitless….'' She swallowed remembering when Jenny had stopped breathing, she cleared her thoughts. ‘'I don't want to stay here and make things worse. I can work out some other way to protect you.''

Oh Shannon. She could feel the guilt rolling off the woman in front of her, feel it inside now, because now they traveled into the threads of essence. She knew she'd have to tell Shannon about this. But first she could see the uncertainly and almost fear looking at her. ‘'I want you to stay.''

Now surprised eyes looked back, with a small tinge of hope, she felt so much of Shannon now. It surprised her how much.



Shannon would have exhaled in the relief if she wasn't so sure she wasn't going to knock over the beer bottle on the table with the gust and it wasn't just because protecting from the safe house would have been a bitch.

‘'Thank you.''

‘'You're welcome….'' Jenny's smile faltered. ‘‘There's something else I need to tell you.''


‘'Something else happened when you were holding me.'' This time she didn't drop her eyes she kept them as emotionally open as she could, hoping Shannon would understand what she was about to explain.


For a moment she collected her thoughts. ‘‘You know Bud calms me?''

Shannon eyes went briefly to the dog, then to back to Jenny. ‘‘Yes. I don't understand how, but yes.''

‘‘He calms me because he gives me his protection, I focus on that, from him it's a warmth to my cold.'' She waited, searching Shannon's eyes to see if she understood. ‘‘When I'm lost I'm cold inside, so very cold. I seek out the warmth, look for it to bring me back or to calm me.''

Shannon nodded. ‘'I can understand that.''

Jenny swallowed, but still held Shannon's gaze. ‘'When I was so lost in there, I couldn't see where the warmth came from, I held on to it and let it bring me back, let it calm me enough so I could fix things inside.''

Shannon's brow dipped.

Jenny leaded forward in her chair. ‘'I didn't know it was yours until I became aware of who I was. By that time I'd already let it inside me to heal.''

Shannon's dipped brow turned into a deep frown. ‘'I don't understand.''

Jenny sighed. ‘'Remember I told you that each one of us has an essence?''

Shannon nodded.

‘'Essence is what I look for to find people, but it's also part of how I heal. The purity of it. Every emotion has one in a way, not an essence in itself but a thread. Each thread is different. Bud's is calm, his protectiveness, and his joyfulness. When I touch bud. I…. Tap into it. Because I've tapped into it…. It becomes a tiny part of me. If I open to it I feel him. Bud knew I think he couldn't bring me back on his own this time. He knew I needed you…. When we were in there I tapped into yours.'' Jenny waited.

Shannon stiffened.

Jenny swallowed, watching as the open curious eyes in front of her closed off to her. She lowered her gaze. ‘'I'm sorry.''

‘'I'm still not sure what it means?''

‘'I can feel you. Sense you.''

Shannon felt her stomach drop, but it wasn't from dread it was the sound of Jenny's voice saying those words. It was arousal. She stiffened, wondering where the hell that came from. Her mind trying to get around what Jenny was telling her.

Jenny kept her voice even, seeing the struggle. ‘‘All this means Shannon, is I'm more aware of your emotions. I won't notice it happening as much. What I'm trying to say, even with my walls up around you. I… it's harder to block you now…. But don't worry I won't be reading you without permission. I wouldn't do that. I just need you to be aware of what happened.'' She swallowed hard. ‘‘Overtime and distance it will separate again. I…. Will lose the connection. It isn't permanent Shannon. When this case is over and …. And you go back to your life; I won't be spying on you. I won't know what is going on at all.'' Even thinking it made her ache. She'd gotten used to the warmth within her now.

Shannon didn't know what to think. This was all to strange, if she talked to anyone about this she knew they were going to kill themselves laughing at the absurdity of it. That Jenny could sense her, feel her. But as she looked into those amazing eyes she knew it was the truth. She had no other choice but to except it. She exhaled. ‘‘How come when you woke up, you didn't run like hell? I was touching you.''

Jenny looked down as a small smile crept on her face. ‘‘Because my essence now knows you. You're not a stranger anymore. Besides, I felt…. I felt safe.''

Shannon sat back, slightly in shock. ‘‘Safe?''

Jenny nodded her voice a whisper. ‘‘Yes. Very safe.''

‘'I'm glad.''

Jenny matched the smile aimed at her. ‘‘You're an amazing woman Shannon, you except things so simply. I wish others were like you.''

‘‘Um.'' Shannon dropped her eyes slightly embarrassed, scratching at the back of her neck, unaware of the growing habit of doing it.

Jenny knew laughing wasn't an option, but she found this side of Shannon adorable. ‘'I didn't ‘mean to embarrass you.''

Shannon snorted. ‘'I'm sure you did.''

This time Jenny did laugh. ‘‘You make it very easy. You don't take compliments very well.''

‘'Does anyone?''

Jenny shook her head, still smiling.

Shannon took a drink of beer, needing to center herself for a moment. Thinking.

Jenny's smile weakened as she felt what was coming.

‘'What did you see?'' Shannon's voice was low, her eyes fixed on the beer bottle.

Jenny inhaled. ‘'You. Being shot. Twice.''

Shannon flinched. ‘‘Yea.''

‘‘Were you badly hurt?''

Shannon looked up surprised. ‘‘You couldn't tell?''

Jenny shook her head. ‘‘It doesn't work that way. Were you?''

Shannon tilted her head back, staring at the ceiling. ‘'Yea. I took one in Shoulder and one in the stomach.'' She didn't see Jenny's wince. ‘' I wasn't wearing my vest. I was off duty. Only been a cop for three years. My…. My first shooting. I walked into gas station while it was being held up. I was in the hospital for six weeks, took another four months to get my shoulder back to normal. Had some nerve damage. Damn near nearly got me a desk job for life. ‘' she closed her eyes to the memory, all those weeks of physic therapy. She sat forward suddenly, finishing the last of the beer in the bottle with one down. Forcing a smile she looked over, seeing the pain on Jenny's and the sympathy. ‘'I was lucky. I survived it.''

‘‘And the robbers?'' Jenny felt a feeling of dread.

Shannon stiffened. ‘'I shot them. One was nineteen….'' She swallowed hard. ‘'…. The other was thirteen. A kid with a damn antique colt 45 like a cowboy. Forensic was surprised it worked and didn't blow up in his face. Yea, well, it worked enough to shoot me in the fucking gut.''

‘‘Oh Shannon.''

‘'I didn't really have a choice. They just started shooting when I entered the store. I just fired back to the threat. It…. It wasn't' until after the surgeries I found out who they were and how old. It was deemed a clean shoot. My records clear. But, that doesn't make it right. Still doesn't. I killed a thirteen-year-old boy.'' She drew in air. ‘' I know if it happens again, I'd still respond the way I did. If I don't I'm dead. Doesn't make it easy….''

‘'No.'' Jenny cried, because she knew Shannon couldn't cry for that memory anymore.

They locked gaze. An understanding between them forming.

Jenny lowered her gaze first. ‘'I need to get some sleep. If you don't have any more questions?''

Shannon just shook her head, silently.

Jenny rose, moving to the bedroom, calling bud to her side, letting him enter first, she looked back to Shannon. ‘‘Sleep well.''

‘'You too.''

Quietly Jenny entered, closing the door with a click, leaning against it. Her world had changed so suddenly and for once, she didn't feel the dread of it.

Shannon watched her go, her left hand came up to massage her right shoulder, knowing why it suddenly ached. It always did when she went back to those memories. She wondered if Jenny felt that too. Shaking her head she rose. Doing her finally check she turned down the oil lamps before going into her room. For once, sleep came quickly.


Dark eyes stared into the large lit standing magnifying glass. Below it amplified latex fingers held the nickel. Reaching across he lifted the engraving tool and starting etching into the edging, turning the nickel slowly to continue each letter. Carefully blowing away the tiny debris as his words dug into the coin.

‘‘One, two, buckle my shoe. There four, knock at the door.'' He grinned at his own humor. ‘'Knock knock.'' He chuckled as he tapped the nickel.

Sitting back he admired his handy work. His head turned slightly to the moan from behind him. ‘'Hush. It won't be long now.''

His attention went back to the nickel, dipping it into the jar of solution he knew would wipe any trace of him away.

Then he rose, smiling as he heard the moans change to whimpering. He lifted the syringe. His hand reaching out to caress the bruised face of his victim.

‘'Time to sleep baby. It's show time.''


Marcus knew as he sat in Jenny's eating breakfast, something had defiantly changed. Even the air around seemed to be freer. Hell, even the detective had greeted him with a smile on her face. He frowned, if he didn't know any better he could have sworn his friend and the detective had gotten laid. He crunched into his toast, his eyes following Jenny as she wiped down one of the shelves. ‘'What exactly are you doing?''

Jenny peeked back over her shoulder at him. ‘‘What does it look like Einstein, I'm dusting.''

‘‘Ahuh.'' He spread more jam on his toast before depositing it in his mouth.

Jenny sighed, standing straight. ‘'I needed to concentrate on something mindless for a while okay?''

He washed the last of the toast down with the coffee. ‘'Far be it from me to look deeper into that.''

Jenny narrowed her eyes. ‘‘Good then don't.'' Turning she returned to the dusting.

He drummed his fingers on the tablecloth for a moment. ‘‘Jenny?''

She looked over in question.

‘'Did…. I mean…. Did you two…. You know?''

Jenny crossed her arms. ‘'No. and even if we had Marcus it isn't any of your business.''

‘‘But something happened?''

Her eyes darted around for a moment before finally she relaxed, walking over to him. ‘'I lost it yesterday.'' She sat.

Marcus's eyes sprung wide. ‘‘Shit! You okay?''

‘‘Yea I am. I was so far-gone this time.'' She exhaled. ‘‘Anyway Shannon brought me out of it.''

His brow creased. ‘'Shannon did?''

‘‘She reacted, grabbed me into her arms.'' She left the rest unsaid, only because she knew he would understand the rest.

His eyes showed the realization. ‘'How she handle it?''

Jenny's finger absent mindedly made patterns in the cotton white tablecloth. ‘‘Better than anyone I know. Except for you. She accepts things so freely and easily.''

Marcus studied her face. ‘'What aren't you telling me?''

Jenny softly smiled. ‘'I saw her past.''

‘‘Anything juicy? Does she bat for your team?''

Jenny snorted, slapping at him. ‘'Be serious for once.''

‘'Well. What you see?'' He waited, then sat back. ‘‘Fair enough, I didn't expect you to tell me anyway.''

She looked over at him, her smile now one of affection.

‘'Does she know now she's under your skin.'' He kept the smile to himself as he watched her blush.

‘'She knows.'' She rose, turning her attention back to the shelves, the duster already making movements against the wood.

He watched her for a while longer, then rose. ‘'Where has action girl gone anyway?''

Jenny chuckled at the description. ‘'She had to go into the station. Don't worry I've got Jane watching over me.'' Her eyes flickered out to the form on the beach, lying, as if sunbathing and nothing more than a tourist.

Marcus grin increased, walking to the door. ‘‘Ah yes the delectable Jane.'' His eyes made sure to take in as much as possible. ‘'Where do you think she hides her gun in that little thing?''

Jenny rolled her eyes, pulling him away. ‘'You know Marcus you keep this up I'm going to buy you a dirty Mac for Xmas.''

‘‘Ohhhhhhh. Buttons or zip?''

She grabbed him harder. But she couldn't contain her laughter. Sometimes it felt good to be alive. ‘‘Oh shut up. Come on I want to update you and show you something.''

‘'Can't wait.'' He grinned. For her he would play the fool any day if he could get her to laugh like this. But even as he followed, he knew Jenny's good mood had little to do with him. Also aware of the change in her as they entered the den, all amusement vanished from both of them, to be replaced with the dark somber business at hand.


Shannon chewed her lip, feeling strange being back in the precinct. Her eyes reading over the F.B.I report the Captain had given her when she'd arrived earlier. As she read, she recognized the Fed.'s didn't know much at all. A smile creased as she read their profilers' report, seeing parts of Jenny's incorporated into it. She wondered how the Captain had managed that and still kept Jenny anonymous.

She closed the file, sitting back. Her eyes went to the empty chair across from her. She'd been surprised to find Pete wasn't around, or that anyone knew exactly where he was. That wasn't unusual in itself. But it niggled at her. She looked at her watch, knowing the ferry back wasn't for another two hours. The Captain had given her a free rein with Jenny and anything needed. With the Fed.'s now involved it meant any new evidence had a chain of command. With the F.B.I. first on the list. She knew Jenny wasn't going to like that, hell, she didn't like it. The Captain however had told her, that in his mind Jenny got first after forensic. Again she wondered how he was going to do that.

One thought rose to the surface, something she'd put on a back burner, and something she'd seen two nights ago while on the laptop. She inputted her code into the computer and called up the back reports she'd been looking over. Her attention now on tracking down what she'd seen.


Marcus looked up; pride and worry in his eyes at what Jenny had managed to track down. ‘'Jesus. How do you do this? It still surprises the hell out of me the way your mind works sometimes.''

Jenny smiled slightly, embarrassed.

He relaxed back, his eyes going to the photographs. ‘‘What do you make of the subtle change of position?''

Jenny bit her bottom lip. ‘‘At a guess, cos that's all I can give right now?''


‘‘It's important to him, and it's linked to his obsession with the number thirteen.'' She shook her head at herself. ‘'After yesterday I haven't really concentrated on it.''

He looked up at that. ‘'You think it will tip you again?''

Jenny slowly nodded. ‘‘Yea.''

He studied her gaze, then gave a relaxed smile. ‘‘You won't.''

She gave a nervous laugh. ‘‘You have a lot of faith….'' Her hand went back through her hair. ‘‘Wish I did.''

He rose, smiling, moving to her, placing his arm around her shoulders. ‘‘Jen. Right this sec. you're more grounded then I've ever seen.''

Her eyes jumped up to his in surprise. Searching his face to see if he was feeding her a line. She twisted closer to him. ‘'Really?''

‘‘Hell yea. Can't you feel it?''

She gave a weak smile. ‘'I feel it. But I didn't want to trust in it.''

He laughed drawing her into a hug. ‘‘Look. Stop second-guessing yourself. What happened in D.C. wasn't your fault….'' He silenced her words, placing two fingers on her lips. His eyes were boring into hers. ‘‘Trust me in this. It wasn't you. You and I both know you were pushed into giving information too soon. Information you had you told them it might be a mislead. They choose to ignore the warning. They did Jen, not you.'' He sighed, removing his fingers, gently stroking her temple. ‘' What happened with you was a mistake in your judgment yes. But not in your talent. There is a huge difference. Trust in you Jen. In you. Besides, you didn't have action girl protecting you back then.''

Her eyes slid shut, feeling the tears break. She held onto him.

He held her tightly back. His eyes falling to the pictures of each victim lay on the table... ‘‘Please believe. Jen. Because honestly, you're the only one who can stop him.''

‘'You have to much faith in me Marcus.'' She drew away.

‘‘No I don't. And neither does Shannon.''

‘'Shannon likes results, I could be anyone to her.''

Marcus frowned. ‘‘You know that's the first time I've ever heard you lie to my face.''

Her eyes snapped to him. ‘'I'm not lying. I'm just a tool to them. You know that.''

His eyes softened. ‘‘To the department and government sure, but to Shannon?''

Jenny's eyes dipped. ‘'She trusts to easily.''

He barked a force laugh. ‘‘Just an hour ago you were telling me how you admired her for it.''

Jenny turned away, her eyes going to the victim board. ‘‘It will get her hurt.''

Marcus watched her, trying to see why the sudden change. Then he understood. He drew in a breath. ‘'There's a break in her essence?''

Jenny exhaled, wishing he wasn't so attuned to her.

He walked slowly to draw level with her. ‘‘How bad?''

Her jaw tensed. ‘‘Bad enough.''

‘‘Related to this?'' His eyes went to the board briefly.

‘'I'm not sure. But it isn't far away?''

Marcus swallowed, seeing the strain on his friends face, also fear. ‘'Death?''

Jenny turned away. ‘'I don't know.''

His eyes sadly followed her as she left the room.


Shannon sat back, her face slightly pale, her chin set in anger at what she'd just discovered. At first she'd thought she'd been wrong, going over everything again and again. But it still came back with the same conclusion. She looked over to the empty chair. Then with one swift movement she rose pulling her jacket off the back of her chair and left the precinct.


Jenny turned her head as she heard Bud growl, breaking her concentration from the laptop she was doing research on, her eyes followed his intent gaze to the front door.

Bud growled again, this time raising and moving to the doorway as the figure stepped into view. He let out a snarl and a bark.

‘'Shit! Newton call him off, for Christ sake.''

Jenny sat still, calming her instant reaction of fear, then anger. She turned in her chair to face him. ‘'What are you doing here Detective Johnston?''

Peter nervously looked down at the dog. ‘'I wanted to speak to Shannon .''

She studied him. ‘'She isn't here.''

His eyes moved briefly from the dog. ‘'She's not?''

‘'She was called to the station this morning.'' She clicked her fingers, bringing Bud next to her.

Pete sighed in relief. ‘'Thanks. Wasn't sure if he was going to eat me.'' He gave a forced smile.

Jenny's face was emotionless she remain silent. Not understanding why he was here.

He made to move into the house, immediately bud moved forward emitting a low growl.

Jenny locked eyes with the detective. ‘'I didn't invite you in.''

His face flushed and he bit down on his anger. ‘'So, I'm supposed to stand out here until Shannon gets back?''

Jenny shrugged.

He scoffed. ‘‘Shit, you really are still some piece of work aren't you.''

Jenny made herself turn away, pretending to focus on the laptop screen again. ‘‘You can wait by the dock. She's taking the ferry at two. She'll be here by three. That's another twenty minutes.''

He clicked his tongue thinking. Looking to the dog again. Exhaling he looked nervously around. ‘‘Fine.'' He turned and left. ‘‘Fucking bitch.''

Jane walked into the doorway, looking at Jenny in question, her eyes going briefly to the departing figure, then back to her. ‘'You okay?''

‘‘Not really. But I'll live.''

Jane looked back up the beach again, following Pete until he disappeared out of view. For some reason she never did like that man. ‘'I told him Shannon wasn't here.''

Jenny nodded. ‘‘He's never been one to listen.''

Jane's eyes flicked to Jenny's, hearing the bitterness. Knowing there was a deeper story there. ‘' Boss is on her way back.''

Jenny returned her gaze to the screen. ‘‘Thank you.'' She was amazed the amount of relief she felt at those words.

‘'I'll go back to beach.''

Jenny turned sharply. ‘'Jane… you can…. Um, come in if you want too.''

Jane's eyes didn't hide the surprise. ‘‘You sure. Boss told me to keep a wide berth.''

Jenny had to smile at that. ‘'I'm sure. Besides I want you to look at something and tell me what you think.''

Jane waited for a moment, then nodded coming over, stopping briefly to ruffle the dog's fur. ‘‘Hey cutie.'' She rose, stopping when she reached Jenny, caught for a moment in the amazing eyes watching her. Wow, was right. Catching herself staring she looked down at the laptop. ‘‘What you want to show me?''

Jenny hid her amusement. ‘'This….'' She clicked the page open.

Jane glanced over the screen, then turned questioning eyes to Jenny; she pulled a chair over sitting. ‘'Tell me more?''


Shannon was lost in thought as the ferry docked. Waiting until most of the passengers had disembarked before getting off. The trip across had given her time to calm her temper; however that was forgotten as she spotted peter waiting not so patiently at the dock. Shannon felt the anger rise again; she took the last four steps in a jump, pushing past two women. To get to her partner. ‘'YOU FUCKING SON OF BITCH.''

Peter stepped back, caught by surprise as Shannon came at him, then his wits came back as two hands grabbed his shirt and forced him back into the railing. ‘‘What the hell do you think you're doing? Get your goddamn hands off me. You gone nuts on me?''

Shannon pushed him harder. ‘‘Why the fuck did you do it?''

His face grew red, grabbing at Shannon 's wrist to try and get her to let go. ‘‘Do what for Christ sake?''

Shannon shook him. ‘‘You told them didn't you? ‘' She shook him hard again. ‘'Didn't you!?''

He blinked, looking into her eyes, he felt himself shiver at the ice and anger he saw there. He took a huge lung full of air. ‘' Shannon ? What are you talking about?''

Her teeth clenched. ‘'D.C.! You fucking told the press about her. You were the fucking leak.''

Peter paled. ‘'I…. I…'' then he composed himself, with a huge effort he threw her hands off. Taking a step away from her. ‘'You don't know what the fuck you're talking about.''

Shannon caught his arm as he began to walk away, pulling him back to face her. ‘‘Oh yes I do. I found the trail Peter. Six people knew she was involved, six! And you know what? All but one checked out….'' She took a breath to still her anger. ‘' Did Jenny know the sixth was your fucking sister?''

Peter's face reddened, his eyes darting nervously around.

‘'What happened Peter? You get a phone call from your sister, telling you about the crazy woman on their case? ‘'

He swallowed. ‘'You don't know jack shit!''

‘‘Don't I. Enlighten me?'' she crossed her arms, only for the reason to stop herself grabbing him again.

His body straightened. ‘‘Yea she told me. I fucking warned them about her. But they didn't listen. My sister was on that damn case, being put in the line of fire every time fucking Newton gave then a clue. Rebecca told me how much Newton was losing it. False leads, false fucking clues. It was only a matter of time before someone got hurt.'' He stepped right up into Shannon 's face. ‘‘It didn't take long, two fucking cops died because of her. My sister wasn't going to be the next one…. Yes I told the press. God damn right I did. I told them every fucking detail.''

Shannon had never wanted to hit someone so much in her life.

He almost spat as he spoke. ‘‘And you know what. I'm fucking glad that basterd got a hold of her. Because it meant we caught him.''

Shannon didn't have time to stop her reflex she stepped back and sent a punch directly into his face. Almost in satisfaction she watched him spin away from the impact and land in a heap. She looked down at him.

‘'Jenny knew didn't she. The whole time she knew it was you.''

He looked up at her with traitorous eyes. Holding his now bloody mouth. ‘'Fuck you.''

‘'No. Fuck you Peter. We're finished. Get yourself a new partner.'' She turned her back on him, walking as fast as she could back towards the calm she knew she'd find.

Peter spat out the blood, ignoring the concerned looks from people around him, he rose, spitting again. Then taking a breath he boarded the ferry. His eyes following Shannon 's figure up the beach. He spat blood over the railing as the ferry began to pull away.



Jenny knew Jane was talking to her, but she couldn't quite hear the words, her mind was elsewhere, where she didn't know. But a ball of anxiety was growing in her stomach and it was getting stronger. She rose, startling Jane.

Jane looked around, her hand dropping to the gun on her hip. ‘'What?''

Jenny didn't answer, she ran from the house and out onto the beach, wincing as the sun hit her un-shaded eyes.

Jane sat shocked for a heartbeat then she was up following on the tail of the also shocked dog after his mistress.

Jenny could hardly see, the sun glare off the sand making it near impossible to focus. Her eyes were already watering at the assault, up ahead she could make out a hazy figure, it didn't take long before her inner sense recognized it as Shannon and the ball of anxiety went up by a hundred. She took off in a run. ‘' Shannon !''

Shannon looked up surprised, more surprised at the fact Jenny was running directly at her, with bud and Jane not far behind. She looked around concerned, searching for any danger.

Jenny just stopped herself in time from throwing herself into Shannon . She skidded to a halt, her hand going to her eyes, to shade as much sun as possible. ‘'Are…. Are you okay?''

Shannon stood staring, unsure of what was going on. Seeing Jane draw to a halt not far off. Then her attention went to the state of Jenny's eyes, she immediately pulled off her own shades, offering them out. ‘‘Here.''

Jenny exhaled in relief, taking them, putting them on, welcoming the dullness to her retinas. ‘‘Thank you.''

Jane looked over in question. Shannon waved her off. Jane nodded and headed back towards the house. Shannon 's eyes went to Jenny again. ‘'What's going on?''

Jenny now felt nothing but embarrassment; she hadn't thought she'd just reacted. Her eyes dropped, then she flinched. ‘'What did you do to your hand?''

Shannon stiffened, the anger before had been forgotten. ‘‘Nothing.'' She was about to draw it away when Jenny caught hold of it bringing it forward to look at. Shannon inhaled sharply at the touch.

Jenny misread the inhale. ‘‘Sorry. Did I hurt you?'' When Shannon shook her head no. Jenny continued. ‘' What happened?'' Her eyes took in the detail of the bruising and swelling.

Shannon didn't know if she could get used to this new part of Jenny, the one that touched so easily, she drew her hand back gently. ‘‘It's fine.''

Jenny gaze came up to blue eyes. ‘‘Tell me?''

‘'I know what Peter did to you…. I didn't expect to see him at the dock. I….'' Her jaw clenched.

Jenny eyebrows rose. ‘‘You hit him? Oh Shannon .'' She took a breath, glad the anxiety was easing and knowing the reason for it. She wasn't sure how she felt about being able to sense Shannon 's emotions so far away. She studied the set jaw of the woman in front of her, well aware she was still angry. What was more surprising to Jenny she found herself deeply touched how Shannon had reacted at her betrayal by Peter. ‘'You shouldn't have hit him. He isn't worth it.''

‘‘He deserved it and you were worth it.'' She pushed past Jenny and headed towards the house, needing to distance herself.

Jenny watched, taking in the words in wonder. Then sighing, she followed.


Jane looked up with a jump as Shannon stormed into the house. She swallowed as blue eyes locked on her.

‘'What the hell are you doing in here?''

Jane rose slowly about to answer, but didn't have to as Jenny replied.

‘'I told her it was okay.''

Shannon blinked in surprise, her tone lowering. ‘'You sure?''

Jenny smiled. ‘‘Yes. I'm sure.''

Shannon gave Jane a quick apologetic look.

Jane now feeling like a third wheel, made her way to the door. ‘'Well now that you're back I'd better get over to the safe house and make sure Richard still has his shirt on. ‘' Her eyes went to Jenny's in amusement. ‘'Your friend is a card shark. ‘'

Jenny laughed. ‘‘Among other things.''

‘‘Oh I bet.'' Her attention went to Shannon . ‘'Nothing to report this morning boss. I'll get back and go through the others reports and call by four for a report. Okay? Oh and Peter was here. Did you meet him at the dock?''

Shannon nodded. ‘‘Yea.''

Jane studied her knowing she wasn't going to get any information. With a smile to Jenny Jane turned and left. Leaving an uneasy silence.

They stared at each other, till Jenny broke it, moving to the kitchen running a cloth under the water. ‘‘Come here.''

Shannon moved towards her at the command.

Jenny wrung out the cloth, then lifted Shannon 's hand again, placing the cool cloth over the bruising. Her eyes came up. ‘'Thank you.''

Shannon exhaled, the tension leaving her. ‘'You're welcome.'' She focused on Jenny's hand on hers, seeing the whiter skin against her tan one. Showing the years of Jenny's reclusiveness in the white color. ‘'Why were you running up the beach like a mad woman?''

Jenny stilled her moments adjusting the rag. ‘'I felt something was wrong.'' Her eyes moved to Shannon 's to see the reaction.

Shannon gave a slight nod. ‘‘Think I worked that out. It's kinda nice.''

Jenny smiled. ‘'I'm glad you think of it that way.''

Shannon finally brought her eyes up. ‘‘Others didn't?''

Jenny stiffened slightly, then gave a lopsided smile. ‘‘No they didn't.'' She turned away to the intense gaze. Wringing out the cloth again, before returning it to Shannon 's hand. ‘‘Keep that on there for awhile. It'll help with the swelling.'' She moved away.

‘'He hates you because he lost the Captain promotion doesn't he?''

Jenny exhaled. ‘‘One of the reasons. Yes.''

‘‘But you didn't tell anyone?''

Jenny looked out to the beach. ‘‘No. His partner worked it out. Grieves came to me and asked me to make a formal complaint.''

Shannon lent back against the sink. ‘'Why didn't you?''

Jenny gave a forced smile. ‘‘He thought he was protecting his sister, who's to say what he did didn't save her in some way. The case was going very wrong, people died. I couldn't hate him for doing it. If I'd made a formal complaint he would have lost his job. Besides that, I really wasn't in any state to bother with stupid people and their prejudices.''

Shannon shook her head, looking down at her hand, flexing it. ‘'I'm surprised he wasn't reprimanded. There's nothing on his record.''

‘‘It wasn't necessary. Grimes was going to be his commanding officer, how do you think that made Peter feel? Knowing his ex partner new everything. Knowing he would be watched?''

‘‘Yea. I guess. Well, he isn't my partner anymore.''

‘'I'm sorry.'' Jenny looked back out to the beach. Wondering what else she could screw up in Shannon 's life.

‘'Don't be. I think I was already beginning to question working with him. I … I don't like some of his methods.''

Jenny looked back, wondering exactly what that meant.

Shannon took a steadying breath, aware of the brief touch of Jenny still on her hand. She closed her eyes until she was sure she wasn't going to reveal anything in her gaze. Although as she moved towards the guestroom to change, she knew her gaze was the least of her worries if Jenny was picking up her feelings.

Jenny turned her head from her gaze on the beach, to the door, when she heard the click of it shut. Only then did she exhale her own held breath.


The sun moved across the sky, signaling the day was ending. Neon lights replaced those of the solar orb, lighting the city up into pulses of candy colors.

He stood in the shadows, viewing his work, something wasn't right, he stepped forward, always aware of marks he would leave with his shoes. He made the adjustment, then stood back again. A smile came to his face. Yes, now it was perfect, turning he disappeared into the shadows.


‘'God damn it Bruno. Get your butt back here.'' The teenager shoved his hands into his pockets, trying to see into the darkness of the trees ahead for any sign of his German shepherd. He kicked out at the leaves. Knowing if his mother discovered he'd sneaked out of the house again at this hour, he'd be grounded until he was eighteen, hell, probably grounded until fifty.

He exhaled, staring into the darkness again. ‘' I mean it. BRUNO!''

He waited, letting his eyes adjust to the darkness. When he heard the tell tell sound of a bark, he shook his head heading into the woodland. ‘‘If you're after another squirrel, I'm gonna skin ya.''

He followed the sound of his dog. Frowning as he neared. Bruno sounded upset about something. His hand tightened on the lease he carried. He stepped over a fallen log, ducking under the low branches, catching sight of the flash of silver from his dog's collar. ‘'Damn it mutt. What you got cornered now?'' He paused in his step as he watched Bruno stop and whimper. A feeling of uneasiness taking over him as he stepped into the clearing, he reached his dog. Now uneasy, his eyes flickering to the shadows around. He knelt to click the lease to the collar. As he ran his hand through the rough dark tan fur, he was surprised to feel the trembling body beneath. ‘‘Hey? What's up boy?'' he suddenly felt afraid.

Bruno sudden loud bark made him jump out of his skin, when Bruno yanked forward he found himself on his knees. ‘‘Fuck. Cut it out will ya. What the hell's wrong with you?''

Bruno barked again, threshing to get loose.

The teenager's anger went up. ‘'Bruno!''

It was then out of the corner of his eye he caught the flash of something white lying on the ground. Curious he rose, aware that Bruno was pulling him in the same direction. ‘'What you find bo….y?''

His words froze. He backed aware pulling with all his strength on the lease as his brain made sense of the horror he was seeing.

‘‘Oh Jesus....'' he suddenly wanted his mother.

He turned and ran. As he ran, imprinted on his mind, the image of the dead woman laid out under the tall marble statue of the graveyard gate and how for a moment he thought it looked like a fallen angel.


Shannon looked at the cell phone in her hand, sitting on the edge of her bed in almost exhaustion at what she'd just been told. Another one was found.

Steeling herself she rose, moving out of the guestroom, seeing the closed door of the bedroom, not really surprised as it was well after two am. She knocked. When no answer came she knocked a little louder, hearing bud's sniffing from the other side.


Shannon could tell she'd woken her from the gruffness in her voice. ‘‘Jenny. I need to talk to you. Could you come out please.'' She stepped back as the door opened.

Jenny tried to bring her sleepy brain into focus, when she looked up into blue anguished eyes, she knew. ‘'There's been another one.''

Shannon swallowed. ‘‘Sarah Harrison.''

‘‘Oh god. Thirteen letters.'' Jenny fought the urge to throw up.

‘'A teenage boy found the body just after one this morning, outside the gates of Nenven Graveyard. It's on the other side of the city. Forensic is handling the scene now. But, they've found something different already. The Captain wanted you to know. He'll send the evidence over as soon as he can.'' She looked down to her hands.

Jenny waited, suddenly feeling a chill. She pulled her dressing gown tighter.

‘‘It's engraved into the edging of the nickel.'' Shannon held out what she was holding.

Jenny looked down to the piece of paper offered she took it, reading.


Fear was the first thought that hit Jenny, freezing her brain, her breath, her blood. Her shaking hand went back through her hair. ‘'Chris…st.'' The second thing to hit her. The anxiety radiating off of the woman in front of her. Her hand came up and lay gently on Shannon 's. ‘'I need to see the coin.''

Shannon stood stock still, trying to keep her own emotions under control. The touch centered her, she wondered if somehow Jenny was calming her.

‘'I know. As I said the Captain is working on it…. There's something else.'' Shannon turned going to the laptop powering it up, calling up her email, and downloading the attachment. Missing the touch already, but aware that Jenny had moved to stand next to her and was watching.

They both watched as the picture downloaded and opened.

Jenny's breath caught, she blocked out the beautiful young dead woman, and focused on the scene. ‘‘He's changed arms.''

Shannon nodded, the Captain had already told her the left arm now was the one extended above and the right now rested across the body.

Jenny shifted closing, turning the laptop more towards her, studying the new left arm position. ‘‘It's the same distance gap as the last victim.''

Shannon called up the last victim picture to compare. Then drew back. ‘‘Yes. But what the hell does it mean?''

‘'I don't know. I need to study this again, all of it.'' Jenny lifted the laptop moving towards the den.''


Jenny stilled her step, turning to face Shannon , anger in her eyes. ‘‘Yes now!''

Shannon bit back her own anger and followed, unsure if she was going to see Jenny lose it again. She stepped into the den, watching as Jenny stopped only to pin up her hair and turn up the oil lamps. Before starting to pull out all the photographs again.

‘'Jenny?'' Shannon 's voice was soft.

Jenny didn't stop looking at the pictures. ‘‘What?''

‘'Can…. Can he see you? Can he do that?''

Jenny's heart stuttered, finally she looked over to her. ‘' It could mean something else. Not aimed at me at all. His way of claiming his power, that he sees everything.''

That didn't ease Shannon 's anxiety. ‘'I'd believe that a lot more if Marcus didn't think he had some sort of psychic thing.'' She ran her hand back through her hair. ‘' Wouldn't you feel it if he has? Wouldn't you feel him watching you like that?''

Jenny felt her skin crawl. ‘'I don't know. There's always a sense with people who have abilities, but have I come across someone who can use it to see me? No. I haven't. So I very much doubt I'd know.'' She was already sending out small vibes to see if she could sense anything. There was nothing. Nothing except Shannon 's growing fear.

Shannon 's jaw clenched. She looked across to the victim wall. Making her mind up, she straightened. ‘'Will you be okay if I leave for an hour? I need to go to the safe house and arrange something?'' She needed to talk to Marcus.

Jenny gave a small nod.

‘'I won't be long.'' She turned, then paused, looking back. Her blues eyes flashing. ‘‘He won't ever get near you.'' Before Jenny could reply she turned and was gone.

Jenny took a few minutes to calm herself, seeing the determination in Shannon 's eyes gave her a buzz of protection, she used it. Then lifting a pencil, she began to chew its end, as her eyes went from each victim and began reading the emailed report on the new one.


Shannon ran, she ran not because she wanted to get to the safe house quickly, she ran because she felt anger and fear, pumping her adrenaline to its limit. She welcomed the burn in her body as she pushed it, she welcomed the gasping breaths as her lungs tried to draw in enough air. She welcomed all of it, because for the brief time she ran, it blocked out the feeling of helplessness that was beginning to grow.

Jane rolled off the couch, coming up to her knees her now drawn gun aimed at the door as it burst open. Her finger relaxed on the trigger. ‘' Shannon ?''

Shannon gulped in a breath. ‘‘Sorry.''

Jane lowered the gun, raising, taking in her boss's appearance. ‘'What the hell's happened?''

Shannon wiped her sweated brow, moving to fill a glass of water. Drinking it in one. ‘'They've found another victim. This time the basterd left a message…. I see you.''

Jane finally replaced her gun to her hip. ‘'Sees who? Jenny?''

Shannon filled the glass again, drinking this one more slowly. ‘‘Maybe. Who knows with this fucking guy.'' She finished the water, turning. ‘'I need to talk to Marcus.''

Jane motioned to the room to the left.

Shannon moved quickly to the door, hammering on it.

Jane winced. She studied Shannon carefully; she wasn't used to seeing her boss so emotional.

Shannon turned back to her. ‘' I want surveillance picked up. Tell the team to stay within perimeter of the house. I'm calling the Captain tomorrow to arrange offshore protection. I want marksmen on the island by midday.''

Jane didn't hide her surprise. ‘‘You think he's going to come after her?'' She didn't like the fact Shannon was believing that the killer had some sort of spooky power. ‘'Boss. Isn't this going too far? It's one thing to think Jenny's got some sort of talent. But the perp? Come on.''

Shannon stiffened. ‘'I'm not taking the chance that he's bluffing.'' She turned back to the door about to hit it again. The door opened, revealing a very unhappy Marcus.

‘‘Where the fuck is the fire…. ‘' His voice tailed off as she saw it was Shannon . His anger was quickly replaced by concern. ‘'What's wrong? Is Jenny okay?''

‘'She's fine. There's been another victim.''

Marcus relaxed hearing Jenny's wasn't hurt. But his insides twisted at hearing someone else had been murdered. He sagged. ‘‘I need coffee.''

Shannon stepped back, letting him move past. She turned to Jane. ‘'Take care of my orders.''

Jane waited, well aware Shannon wanted her gone so she could talk to Marcus alone. What bugged her was why did she? Then giving a curt nod she left.

Marcus watched, then moved to stand next to Shannon . ‘'What's really going on?''

Shannon placed her hand on his shoulder, gently pushing him to sit.

As he sat, Marcus didn't like the look in her eyes at all.


Jenny sat back, the pencil end tapping against her chin. In frustration she threw it down rising, going to the window, suddenly she felt claustrophobic, she wanted air. With one huge movement she pulled the heavy curtain away, revealing the starry night sky, she opened the window pushing it wide, closing her eyes to the breeze that hit her face. She breathed deeply. She had all her senses on alert, looking for any source that was around her. She couldn't sense him, but the real question was, could he see her? She swallowed.

Her eyes opened, she looked out into the night sky. Questions racing through her brain. Why did he change arms? Why was this body placed in a more secluded place? The second question bugged her most of all right now. He needed an audience, he always needed his audience.

Suddenly an idea came to her she returned to the laptop, calling up the new victim's picture, pulling the zoom out to show the surrounding area. She clicked on two of the other attachments showing the scene. Her finger traced the laptop screen, over the statue of the angel, the statue guarding the gates. She remembered a line from a poem, by whom she didn't know.

‘'Watched over by angels. In silent slumber sleeps….until sunrise larks awake..''

She stopped, sitting back, her face filled with concentration, her brow creasing in thought. Her eyes went to the name of the graveyard. She cleared the photographs, calling up an Internet connection. Inputting the name of the cemetery into the search.

Nenven Graveyard.

The search finished, exposing the results. She clicked on the link that would take her to the home page of the Cemetery. She read through the home menu, seeing what she wanted. ‘‘Funeral Times.'' She clicked the link.

When it opened she read down the list of funerals that were scheduled for later today. She sat back, a slight smile formed.

‘'That's why you picked it.''

She pressed print; when it was finished she closed the page. Now she had one answer. She rose again, going back to the window. Looking out, seeing the quarter moon high in the sky. She stilled, her breath inhaling in a sharp gasp. For a moment it seemed the air around her buzzed, she turned so quickly, bud jumped.

Back at the laptop, she called up the victim's pictures again, then she opened the research she'd been looking into previously. Jumping from page to page then back to the pictures, she grabbed up her pencil ripping the top sheet off her notepad to get to a clean page, she started sketching.


Shannon watched as Marcus turned at the dock to wave at her, she raised her hand in answer. Hoping she was doing the right thing. She watched as he boarded the coast guard boat she'd called in. Then sure he was on his way she turned heading back to the house.


Jenny flicked back through the notes she'd written, back to sketches she'd drawn, her mind a mass of possibilities. If she was right, she had another view into his psyche, but she also had much more than that.

Her head turned sensing Shannon 's approach, she rose, running towards the front door.


Shannon jumped as Jenny appeared in front of her. Then she found herself being taken by the arm and pulled towards the den. She could feel the air buzzing around her, knowing it was to do with Jenny's excitement. ‘'Jenny?''

Jenny only stopped and released her when they were in the den, she pushed Shannon into a chair. ‘'Sit.''

Shannon sat, looking around to see if she could understand what was going on. Her eyes went to the blonde pacing form.

Jenny pulled her thoughts into focus. Finally she stopped pacing, rubbing her arms for some warm. ‘' I know why he chose the graveyard. He didn't change his M.O. This wasn't meant to be discovered by a teenager. There's a funeral scheduled at the cemetery for sunrise. A local teacher, she was killed in a car accident last week. The whole school were due to be there this morning. That was his audience. '' Jenny took a breath passing over the printed information.

Shannon read it. ‘‘He would have had to have known this in advance. We might be able to trace him.'' Her mind was already going over the ways. The home page. Contact with the cemetery.

Jenny realized she was beginning to love the look that came into Shannon 's eyes when her mind was at work. She pulled her thoughts back. ‘' I also know why, well I think I know why he's changed arm positions.''

Shannon 's eyes snapped up, she nearly jumped out of the chair. ‘'What? Why?''

Jenny motioned with her hands. ‘'Give me a second. I need to explain something.''

Shannon remained silent.

‘'When I first came on this case, I looked into normal possible explanations for someone to use ritual on their victims….'' She paused, only long enough to form her thoughts. It was one thing to know the reason, it was another to try and explain it. ‘'…. Because he lies the victim out this way makes it not only important to him, but necessary to him. Every tiny little detail has to be right. The shroud is his way of honoring the dead. The care he takes is that too. The fact the body isn't mutilated after death says a lot about him and what he believes….‘'

Shannon watched captivated as Jenny started slowly pacing again.

‘'Most serial killers find something that attracts them, something that pulls them. Whether it's a mathematical, numerical, signs, forces. The Calendar killer of the eighties used the months of the year, each victim was chosen because of their birth date. The Zodiac killer used ciphers and astrological signs of the Zodiac. Robert Lepton used the mystic signs of the pyramids…'' Jenny stopped, facing Shannon . ‘‘So, when I started this I went through that reasoning, looking to find why he does things the way he does. I ruled out Calendar killings. None of the victims have a connection of their birth date. Although I did find the connection of thirteen in their names. ‘'

Shannon nodded.

‘' I also ruled out mystic Egyptian signs, even though he uses the shroud. There isn't any other tie to believe he is following a path of Ra or any lesser god. There's nothing linked to pyramids…. There isn't any numerical connection in the victims either or mathematical, except for his obsession with the number thirteen again. So, that left me with the more basic ideas. Satanically?''

Shannon stiffened.

Jenny shrugged. ‘'If it were that, there would have to be more elemental clues, fire, water, brimstone…. Sacrifices….Symbols. There wasn't. So, I easily moved away from it. Apart from those things missing, it doesn't fit with him; he would have to believe in Satan, which meant he'd have to believe also in a one god and the teachings of Christianity. Which he doesn't. Which meant I could also move away from any religious connection too.'' She took a breath. ‘' To be honest I was at a loss of why he was staying so strictly to laying out the bodies, especially because of the way he was changing the arm position. I didn't know if it was his subconscious doing it or it was still linked to something else.'' Jenny eyes came up to meet Shannon 's. ‘‘When he changed the arms on the new victim but kept it in the same position as the last one, I realized something.'' She moved quickly to the desk lifting the sketch, holding it up in front of her for Shannon to see.

Shannon lent forward to study it, biting her lip to not laugh out loud at the childish drawing; amused eyes went to Jenny's.

Jenny shifted uncomfortably. ‘'Sue me, I can't draw for shit okay, but you get the idea?''

Shannon 's eyes returned to the sketch, trying to see more. ‘‘The lines are the arms right?''

Jenny smiled. ‘‘Yes. Taking the measurement from the center of the body. The one part that never changed any position.''

Shannon sat back rubbing her chin. ‘‘Okay, so?''

Jenny replaced the sketch, this time she lifted a picture she'd found and printed off earlier. Holding it up.

Shannon 's eyes widened, this time she did rise, going over to the take the picture from Jenny's hands.

Her eyes went to the sketch on the table, she lifted it bringing them side by side. ‘'Jesus. What is this?''

Jenny took a breath, shoving down the giddy feeling she was getting. ‘'It's the Draconic Zodiac, but its more commonly known as the Lunar Zodiac. The main bases for it is that no matter how the earth tilts the distance of the moon's ecliptic never changes. It is always 5.15 degrees plus or minus below. That's the exact measurement of the line of the right arm and now the left. It's the cycle of the moon. Druids followed it, Celts. It's very pagan. Which fits with our guy? Another thing is it can be always seen. Unlike the Solar Zodiac.''

Shannon was really trying to follow this. ‘'You said Zodiac? You mean like Aries, Libra and the others.''

Jenny nodded. ‘'Yes. But, the Lunar one is different and that's why he chose it.''

Something in Jenny's voice made her look up, her frown cleared. Her eyes sparking. ‘'Thirteen. It's to do with Thirteen.''

Jenny almost clapped her hands in glee. ‘‘Yes. Oh yes Shannon . The lunar Zodiac has thirteen not twelve symbols.'' She moved away, lifting the list to read. ‘'All the signs are the same as the Zodiac we use today, except on the lunar, Ophiuchus is the extra one. It's known as the serpent bearer. In ancient times, Greek especially followed the lunar Zodiac. It had to do with the Olympic gods. Although back then they had twenty signs in their Zodiac.

The astral stars of three thousand years ago are a lot different than today.''

She took a breath, calming herself. ‘' But, today…. Today the zodiac is known by thirteen symbols. It's what he's using Shannon .''

Shannon grinned, ‘'holy crap. What the hell does it mean?'' her eyes went down to the picture again. ‘'What are these eight dots…?''

Jenny's took a breath. ‘‘It's star constellation which never leave the ecliptic area. I haven't really had time to research them yet.'' She paused, seeing Shannon 's intent gaze on the photograph. ‘'What?''

Shannon shook her head slightly, her mind was focused on the star points in front of her.

Jenny looked down at the image. ‘'Do you see something?''

Shannon didn't answer, something was there, staring out at her, it was just out of reach of what it was. Then it clicked. She turned going to the victim board. Looking at each of them, she turned again, going to the area map they'd used to plan the trip off the island, rolling it out, looking around.

Jenny took a step forward. ‘' Shannon ?''

Shannon looked at her. ‘' I need tacks!''

Jenny quickly opened the drawer offering them over. Shannon took them, pinning the map to the space on the wall next to the victims.

Jenny watched mesmerized, not having one clue what Shannon was doing.

Now the area map was set up, Shannon quickly read the position of each victim found, scanning over the map until she found the area. She reached across snagging a marker off the desk, putting a large red dot onto the map.

Jenny lent back against the table watching Shannon movements, first to the victim's board then across to make the mark on the map. She tried to figure out what Shannon had seen, then as Shannon placed the fourth large dot, she saw it. She slowly drew away from the table. ‘‘Oh my god.'' Her eyes were locked on the dots, her mouth open.

Shannon placed the last victims dot onto the map, she drew back to look, her eyes dropping to the photograph of the lunar ecliptic, then up again. Each dot of the victims made the same pattern as the one she held in her hand of the eight marks. All but one.

Jenny took a step forward, seeing Shannon 's frown, knowing why it was there. ‘'The sixth victim doesn't count to him, remember. ‘'

Shannon looked at her, exhaling, remember what Jenny had told her. ‘'She was tainted.''

Jenny gave a sad nod.

Shannon looked to the map again. ‘‘If…. If he is going by this,'' she shook the photograph in her hand. ‘'…. It means there are still two victims left.'' She reached across taking a green marker looking at the eight dots on the photograph, then up to six on the map. She stepped forward, placing two large green circles in the area where the missing two from the eight should be next. ‘'He will have to leave the next ones in these areas to finish the pattern?''

Jenny swallowed hard. ‘'Yes.''

‘'Christ.'' She looked to Jenny. She tightened her grip on the marker, feeling her hand shake. ‘'You know what this means? We're one step ahead of him. We can catch him. Stake out these places. Fuck…. We've got the basterd.''

Jenny turned away, shaking her head. ‘'No. It means we know where he is going to dump the next body. We have no timeline Shannon . He could wait months, years to do this. Are you going to stake out these places for that long?… No…We're nowhere on finding him before his next victim. Someone else is going to fucking die.''

Shannon inhaled, her voice soft. ‘'Jenny. I know this isn't finding him. Even if one more person dies it's too many. You know as well as I do, he's need is increasing. Do you really think he's going to wait years to fulfill his need?''

Jenny shook her head sadly, she already knew his need for the power of killing was increasing.

‘'Knowing he is going to leave his victim in these areas gives us an edge to catching him. We might not know where he is, but we know where he is going to be. We can make his next victim his last…. It doesn't mean we stop looking for him. But it means we at least have something.''

Jenny hugged herself. ‘'I know.''

Shannon looked at the map again. ‘'It explains something else.''

Jenny turned. ‘'What?''

‘'Why he had to put the bodies in such public places. He had too. He couldn't do anything else. He committed himself to this.'' She held up the photograph.

Jenny breath stilled, she felt her blood go cold. Knowing that Shannon didn't realize what she was saying. ‘'The only reason he'd have to do that was if he was using a center point. ‘'

Shannon frowned. ‘‘Huh?''

Jenny took the picture from her. ‘‘He could have chosen anywhere as a starting point to fulfill the pattern. Away from public places. The only reason he'd have to follow this so strictly was if he started from a center point and was using the ecliptic. The victims would have to fall within it, like the stars do in this. '' She looked into Shannon's eyes, searching to see if she understood what she was saying. ‘'Shannon. He'd have to have a center.''

Shannon looked to the map, unsure.

Jenny turned the photograph to Shannon, tapping the earth. ‘'This is the center point of the lunar ecliptic.'' She moved to the map, hitting it. ‘'There isn't one on here, just the victims. There is no center point.‘' she looked back at Shannon, waiting.

Shannon paled. ‘‘There has to be a center point?''

Jenny nodded. ‘‘Without one, going on your idea of why he had to place the bodies there. It wouldn't work without one. No ecliptic area for the victims to fall into, therefore no need too. It could be totally random.''

Shannon studied the map, then the photograph. Her jaw tensed. ‘'Okay so there has to be ‘an earth' center point? What the hell would it be? It could be anything…. A landmark. He could have just stuck a pin in the damn map….''

Jenny moved away, half listening, her mind was elsewhere, going over what she knew about the killers psyche. Shannon's idea was sparking something inside her. Chewing her lip, as a thought tried to come together. What was it she said earlier? It was important. She closed her eyes trying to go back. Opening them she went back to the table, everything lay out; the small piece of paper caught her eye.

I see you.

The scene from earlier replayed in her mind. Shannon asking her.

‘'Can…. Can he see you? Can he do that?''

Her words, her reply.

‘' It could mean something else. Not aimed at me at all. His way of claiming his power, that he sees everything.''

She whispered the words in the present. ‘‘He sees everything.'' She lifted the piece of paper, staring at the words again.

I see you.

‘‘Could it be that simple to him?''

Shannon attention left the map going to Jenny, unsure if she'd heard her speak. ‘'Did you say something?''

Jenny calmed her thoughts. ‘'I see you.''

Shannon moved next to her, knowing what she meant. ‘'He means you?''

Jenny shook her head. ‘‘No…'' she turned to face the victims. ‘‘He means them. He sees them, all of them. He's the center point, they all fall in his view.''

Shannon inhaled sharply. ‘‘Jenny do you know what you're saying?''

Jenny's voice now held determination. She knew she was right. ‘‘Yes. We find the center point, we find him.''

Shannon just stared at her, then exhaling she moved away. ‘'That's one hell of long shot.''

Jenny twisted round to face her. ‘‘Is it? Haven't you been listening to me about him? About his ego, about being above god. Is it such a reach to believe that he sees himself as all seeing, that he sees himself as the center of the universe?''

‘‘And if it's random?''

Jenny scoffed. ‘‘Has he done one thing that is random? Everything he does is methodical.''

Shannon went over everything, it didn't make sense to her someone would follow a plan so strictly it led to revealing their location and eventually their capture. It didn't make sense to her at all.

As if reading her thoughts Jenny spoke. ‘'I told you he wanted to be caught, but only when he was ready. He waited to the sixth victim to change arm positions, he could have done it on the second one. Instead he taughted us with it. Only showing us when he was ready.''

Shannon eyes sparked anger. ‘'Why now?''

‘'He's getting ready to finish his work. He has left the clues it's up to the police to figure it out. If they don't he simple will disappear, his work done. However he won't stop forever, the need will rise again in the future and he'll start this all over again. He'll deny responsibility for any killings previously, it wasn't his fault he wasn't stopped. He'd left the information, the clues. ''

Shannon still didn't want to believe. She looked at Jenny, knowing that without her on this case they wouldn't be anywhere near him. None of the clues would have been understood, no link. Maybe she was wrong to believe what Jenny was finding was right, maybe this really was some sicko who just likes killing and doing strange things, that they were random and Jenny was the only one seeing any sort of pattern.

Jenny stayed silent, just looking into the stormy gaze, showing Shannon's torn thoughts. Knowing there was a battle going on. She could feel Shannon's tenseness, it made her own stomach muscles clench.

Shannon wanted to believe, wanted to think that somehow they'd found away to this killer. That the blonde woman in front of her, had been the key to figuring him out. But that would mean she'd have to fully trust in Jenny. She lowered her eyes. She was a cop, she had to go on evidence, on facts. What Jenny was showing her was a maybe, an idea. But still, she was torn. Her gut was telling her Jenny was right. She realized her fists were clenched into a tight ball. ‘'You're sure about this?''

Jenny knew what she was being asked, did she doubt, did she trust. She set her jaw, putting all her feeling into her gaze. ‘'Yes. Yes, I'm sure.''

Shannon felt the jolt between them. Her voice was hoarse when she spoke. ‘'Then how do we find him?''

Jenny nearly stepped back as she felt the connection form between them, the finally wall falling in Shannon, the one that held Shannon back from trusting. It made her giddy, it made her feel humble being giving this gift. She swallowed hard to clear her emotions. ‘'We use his ecliptic. We know his area.''

Shannon managed to break the gaze, looking to the map. ‘'Do it. I need to contact the Captain and fill him in on all of this.''

Jenny began composing herself. ‘'I need Marcus.''

Shannon stiffened. ‘'Marcus?''

‘‘Yes. He's better at map reference and degrees. He's a math freak. Can I use your cell to call him to get him over here?'' Jenny turned away, pulling her evidence into a pile.

‘‘It's after four in the morning.''

‘'He won't mind. He loves working out shit like this.''

Shannon exhaled her head bowing for a moment. ‘'Marcus isn't at the safe house.''

Jenny jerked, turning. ‘'What? Where is he?''

‘'I needed him to do something. He's gone back to the mainland.''

Jenny studied Shannon's face, well aware she wasn't meeting her gaze. ‘'Too do what?''

Shannon fidgeted.

‘'Shannon? Too do what?''

Exhaling, Shannon faced her. ‘'I sent him back to the crime scenes. I wanted to know if he sensed this guy watching you. I wanted him to follow up on the poppies as well.''

Jenny felt the chill invade the natural warmth between them. ‘'Do you know what you've done?'' She searched Shannon's face.

‘‘Yes.'' Shannon turned away.

Jenny reached forward, pulling at Shannon's arm until she faced her properly. ‘'Do you!''

Shannon flushed. ‘‘Yes! If this guy can sense you, then he can sense Marcus. Yes I know what I've done.''

Jenny's eyes flickered to each of Shannon's eyes trying to see why. Trying to see if she really understood. What she saw, she didn't like, she stepped back. ‘'You're using him as bait!''

Shannon pulled her arm free, filled with the guilt she suddenly felt. Was she?

Jenny took another step back, her face showing disbelief, then it slowly changed, to the cold emotional one Shannon had seen the first day she'd arrived. ‘'You're like all the rest. Anything to get a fucking result. Damn you. I want you out of my house!'' She turned and headed out of the den, trying to contain the shaking of her body.

Not long afterwards the bedroom door slammed shut with a bang.

Shannon sagged backwards until the edge of the table stopped her. Then angry she moved away, pulling her cell free and calling the Captain, focusing on what needed to be done.



Jenny stared at the ceiling, she hadn't slept, it was impossible too. First because of the anger, then the disappointment, but as the hours passed her emotions finally settled on the hurt, and it did hurt. Knowing that Shannon was like all the rest. She knew it was her own fault, for trusting, for letting someone in. Marcus had warned, hell, she'd warned herself.

She twisted over onto her side, staring at the wall, the one she'd stared at a thousand times before, it still gave her silence, still gave its old grained silent stare of nothing. Her eyes slipped finally closed, the held back tears then had no reason not to fall free.


Shannon let her chin rest on her pulled up knees, shifting to wrap her arms around them as she stared out over the ocean. It had taken well over two hours to update the Captain, most of that time had been arguments of ‘was this right?' She'd finally gotten him to understand and believe her. Things were already in motion to set up surveillance at the two remaining possible drop sites. She'd gotten off the phone, mentally and psychically exhausted.

She didn't know how she'd really gotten to the place she was now, and not just in the location of sitting on the beach. She hadn't given it a second thought to send Marcus back to the mainland, it was the right thing to do. Marcus was needed there, his talent was different to Jenny's he needed to touch, to sense. If she was honest with herself she really hadn't thought about him ending up as bait, not until Jenny had thrown it at her. Then she couldn't really deny it, it was exactly what she'd done. What confused her was why hadn't she seen what she was doing? There were a lot of things she didn't understand lately, most of all her emotions around Jenny.

She sighed heavily, looking out now across the dawn filled sky. When had her life become so complicated? She'd felt that jolt between them earlier, so much so it still sent her stomach into butterflies. What was that, more spooky power?

She tilted her head back, closing her eyes. She hurt and she knew the reason why, because she'd hurt Jenny in what she'd done. She swallowed hard, remembering Jenny's words, each one had felt like a god damn cut. She brought her eyes open slowly, staring up at the dome of the sky, the beginning full blue of another day forming. Her head dropped level again, looking out to sea. She didn't want to leave, not just because of the danger to Jenny, but because? There was the rub. Because of what?

Her chin returned to her knees again, her gaze across the sea, but her thoughts were far beyond the horizon.


Jenny gasped as she woke up, sitting straight with a bolt, her eyes showing her disorientation. She looked down feeling a wet lick to her hand.


He licked again, then moved to the door, looking back at her, waiting.

‘'God.'' She ran a shaking hand through her hair. Feeling the tell tell itch of sweat on her skin. She took a breath, steadying her nerves, the disorientation fading as her waking mind took over. Was it a nightmare? She searched her mind. No. There were no signs of fear or images, just a now vanishing feeling of something being wrong.

Bud's whimper, pulled her from her thoughts, her eyes went to him. He pawed at the door, again looking back to her.

Jenny's frowned, there was something wrong, she felt it, but she also saw it in her dog. Throwing the blanket back, she rose, stepping into her slippers, pulling on her robe. She reached across lifting her watch, reading the time of 6.32 as she attached it to her wrist.

Bud wagged his tail gently, waiting for her to approach.

She knelt next to him. ‘'What's up? Was I dreaming?''

He licked briefly at her face, then pulled away, scratching at the door.

Jenny stood, opening the door, following him to see what was going on. She was surprised when he headed to the front door, again waiting for her.

‘'If you've just woken me for a pee? I'm not going to be happy Buddy boy.'' But even as she said the words, she knew it was something more. She lifted her sunglasses, moving to the door and opening it.

Bud moved just outside, stopping to look back at her, waiting for her to follow.

Shaking her head she followed.

He moved slowly making sure to keep his pace to be followed, stopping occasionally to make sure his mistress wasn't far behind.

Jenny was curious as hell, she'd never seen him act this way before. She followed over the sand dunes, well aware they were getting quite away from the house. She suddenly felt self-conscious being in her slippers and robe. ‘'Bud?''

Bud paused for a moment, looking back, imploring her with his eyes to follow.

Sighing Jenny continued in step with her dog.

Bud stopped, sitting, looking back seeing his mistress struggle to climb up the larger dune. When she reached him he looked down to the beach below.

Jenny rubbed the sand off her hands, looking down at him. ‘'Well I'm here now what?''

Bud looked up at her, then looked down to the beach below again.

Jenny followed his gaze, her breath caught, her eyes locked on the lone figure sitting, she felt the pure cascade of sadness, pain, but most of all she felt the well of loneliness. She sucked in a breath to erect a wall. Fully aware the wall didn't keep everything out anymore from this person.

Bud looked up to her sadly. She broke her gaze from the figure, looking down at him. ‘‘You shouldn't have brought me here.''

He held her gaze.

Jenny felt the anger spark from the night before, she felt something else too, a pull to her senses, she turned her head and met the blue gaze leveled on her from below.

Their eyes held.

Jenny watched as Shannon rose, watched as she slowly walked along the beach to the base of the dune, watched as the detective climbed it and only stopped when she was standing in front of her.

‘'I'm sorry.''

Jenny crossed her arms. Her emotions back under control. ‘'For what?''

Shannon looked down. ‘'For…..'' she swallowed. She looked up, hoping to see some sense of Jenny she'd grown to know. What she hoped wasn't there. She took a long breath. ‘'I'm sorry for being like the rest.''

Jenny flinched.

‘'I'd hoped I wasn't. I mean….'' Shannon exhaled noisily, wishing she could find the right words to make this right again. Her eyes fell along with her voice. ‘'I'm sorry.''

Jenny wanted to stay mad, wanted to stay emotionless. ‘'Why?''

Shannon looked up, confused. ‘'Why am I sorry?''

Jenny's anger snapped. ‘'No. Why did you do it? Why use Marcus as bait? Knowing how I felt. Knowing how things had happened with me in the past?''

‘'I didn't, I mean I wasn't.''

Jenny eyes sparked. ‘‘Don't lie to me.''

‘'I'm not lying. I wasn't using him, not like you think okay. I needed his help. This fucking asshole is after you. I needed Marcus to go to the mainland and try and find a sense of something. ''

‘‘Bullshit. You don't believe in Marcus's talent. '' Jenny turned away heading back down the sand dune.

‘‘Hey wait.'' Shannon took off after her, well aware her own anger was pushing to the surface. She grabbed Jenny's arm pulling her roughly around. ‘‘Don't do that. I'm trying here.''

Jenny wrenched her arm free. ‘'Trying to do what? Make up some feeble excuse of why you just used my best friend? ‘'

‘‘It isn't an excuse. I'm trying to explain. I didn't think of him as bait. I thought of him as a way to protect you. He agreed with it.''

Jenny's laugh held no humor. ‘‘Of course he did, he'd do anything to protect me. He's a fool and I love him for it. He'd have gone along with any fucking half hearted plan.''

‘‘Then why are you so angry at me for doing the same?''

Jenny's eyes snapped back to Shannon, her mouth opened to say something she knew she'd regret, she stared at her seeing that Shannon meant it. She closed her mouth on the harsh words. ‘'You had no right too.''

Shannon's anger broke. ‘‘No right! No right. I'm here to protect you, I promised you to keep you safe, that this fucking psycho wasn't going to get near you. I have every right to use any means necessary to see that doesn't happen. I'm a cop, I'm sorry your feelings got hurt I never meant that to happen. But you've got to understand my first priority is to catching this guy.''

Jenny didn't hear what Shannon was saying all she heard was one word. She took a step closer bringing her face level with Shannon's. ‘‘Use?''

Shannon swallowed. ‘‘Yes use. If sending Marcus to the mainland is using him, then yes I'm using him.''

Jenny stepped back, looking Shannon up and down in disgust. ‘'Then I was right, you are like all the fucking rest. You shouldn't change partners Shannon, you and Peter make excellent bedmates. Thank god I found out in time otherwise I'd end up like Cindy.'' To anger to realize what she'd said, she turned and stormed off down the dune.

Shannon inhaled as she felt the wind leave her lungs, her emotions froze. She took in a long haggard breath. Unable to stand anymore she sunk to her knees. Her head bowed. Christ that had hurt. She felt a nudge, glancing sideways she saw bud looking at her with sadness in his eyes. She gave him a weak smile. ‘'Go on. She needs you.''

He rubbed himself along her.

Shannon took another deep breath, pushing the pain away, pushing it back deep to where it belonged, she ran her hand over his fur. ‘'I'm okay. Go. Protect her, she won't let me anymore. Go, I need you too.''

He gave her one last doubtful look, then took off down the beach in pursuit of his mistress.


Jenny threw the front door open so hard, the shelves rattled. Tearing off her sunglasses she tossed them across the table so hard they skipped right off the edge to the floor. The anger was rippling through her, snaking into her thoughts, hissing deep in her veins. She lashed out, knocking the books from the shelf. ‘'Fuck her. I don't need her.''

She paced, wringing her hands together, she turned fast moving to the door to slam it shut. She stopped dead. Bud was standing there, his head tilted, his body shaking. She stared at him, feeling his fear, fear, of her. It stopped her motion, stopped the anger. Her mind cleared of the blackness and into it her harsh words echoed. Her body trembled. ‘'Oh god.'' She felt sick.

Bud whimpered, unsure.

Jenny sank to her knees. ‘‘Oh Bud. She didn't deserve that.'' She buried her face in her hands.

He ran to her, licking at her hands to get to her face, tasting the salt of tears, he hated that taste, it meant his mistress was sad, was hurt. He tried to catch all of them, to wash them away with his touch.



Jane had no clue why she'd suddenly been assigned to Jenny's house. Or if she was honest what the hell was going on. All she knew was the boss had turned up looking like hell. She was then given the new orders of she was to go to Jenny's and take up residence as the psychic's new bodyguard in the guestroom. All questions she asked were met with silence. So here she was on the way to the house. She knocked on the open door, looking around inside for any signs of life. She smiled as bud came into view.

‘'Hey cutie. Your momma home?'' her eyes moved upward as the psychic came into view. Interesting Jane thought. She looked like she'd been crying. Jane gave a smile. ‘‘Hi. It seems I'm your new bodyguard.''

Jenny sipped her tea, keeping her emotions completely in check. ‘'Where's Shannon?''

Jane didn't know whether to move forward or stay where she was. ‘'Well, boss lady is at the safe house. Did her…. Did she tell you there was a change?''

Jenny looked away. She didn't really blame Shannon after what she'd said. ‘'No.''

‘‘Oh.'' Great . ‘'Is this going to be a problem?''

Jenny gave a weak smile. She wasn't stupid enough to send her protection away, not now. ‘‘No.'' She motioned with her head. ‘'The guestroom is back there.''

Jane lifted her bag onto her shoulder, now curious to know what had exactly gone on between these two. ‘'Thanks. I'll dump my stuff, then I'll take Shannon's back over.'' She caught the flash of pain before Jenny looked away.

‘'I have work to do. I'll be in the den. Help yourself to whatever you need.''

Before Jane could question anymore, she watched Jenny leave the room. She felt someone staring at her, turning her head she found bud watching her intently. ‘‘So. Mind telling me what the fuck is going on?''

He barked, then headed into the den after Jenny.

Jane rolled her eyes, adjusting her bag, making her way to the guestroom. ‘'Great. Everyone's sworn to secrecy.''



Shannon fingers idly tapped on the table, her eyes moved from each of the surveillance screens. Each image clicking a refresh every couple of seconds. She watched Jane enter the house and not come back out. That had made her relax, she'd half expected Jenny to argue at the fact Jane was going to stay there. It also made her sad that she was now so easily replaced. She lifted the ringing phone.


‘'Shannon. It's Grieves. We have a problem.''


Jane attention left the book she was reading, going to the psychic as she entered the room, she watched as she went to the kitchen.

Jenny looked over. ‘'You want a drink?''

In answer Jane held up her soda.

Jenny nodded, going back to making herself some tea.

Jane noticed how tired Jenny looked. She'd gotten used to her eyes now and also her uneasiness of being around her. In fact if anything she was curious.

‘'So, um, any luck on what you were working on?''

‘'Not yet.''

‘'Anything I can help with?''

‘'No. Thank you.''

Jane shifted slightly uncomfortable to the short answers. ‘'I guess I'll get back to my book then.''

Jenny glanced over, feeling and seeing the nervousness. ‘'I appreciate your offer, but I tend to work better alone.''

Jane gave a relaxed smile. ‘‘Well, I can understand that, besides, I'm not sure how I could help anyway, I saw what you worked out about the body position. I'd have had no clue.''

Jenny gave an embarrassed smile at the praise. ‘'I'm just good at puzzles.''

Jane laughed. ‘'Guess that's the understatement of the year.''

Jenny let herself relax, she liked Jane. There was no pretence or hidden emotion in the woman who was looking at her so openly. ‘‘Have you been a cop long?''

Jane was surprised by the sudden personal question. ‘'Seems like forever. It's nearly twenty years.'' She smiled slyly. ‘' You been a voodoo woman long?''

Jenny barked a laugh. ‘'Seems like forever.''

‘'Hmmm.'' Jane's curiosity peaked.

Jenny waited.

‘'Must be kinda weird.''

‘That's the understatement of the year.'' Jenny's attention went back to the whistling kettle.

Jane grinned, enjoying the play of words. ‘'Well, I admit I don't disbelieve or belief, I've seen to much strange shit in my time.''

Jenny turned back, leaning back against the sink edge, stirring her tea. ‘‘Probably the best way to be in your line of work. Keeping an open mind.''

Jane chuckled. ‘'No shit. Especially round a full moon, you'd be surprised what goes on then.'' She shrugged, sitting back, her eyes going to bud as he came in from the beach. ‘'I don't understand half the time what goes on in this crazy world.'' Her eyes went back to Jenny's. ‘‘Like for instance, what the hell I'm doing here and why the boss ain't?'' She watched Jenny closely, seeing the brief pause of the stirring of her tea, before it resumed and Jenny turned away. She waited to see what she would do.

Jenny sighed. ‘'Did she tell you anything?''

‘‘Nope. Just to get my butt over here.''

Jenny dumped the teabag into the bin under the sink.

Jane still waited, when she was still met with silence, she took a chance.

‘'All I do know is, she was upset. I've known her for a while now, Shannon doesn't show her emotions easily.''

Jenny closed her eyes to the guilt she felt. ‘'I know.''

Jane sat forward. ‘‘Look, if it's something I can help with I'd like too. Or you can tell me to mind my own damn business. Just know she's a friend and I don't like her being upset.'' Her voice had changed to one of warning.

Jenny heard it, turning to her. ‘‘You're a good friend. Shannon's lucky to have you watching her back.''

‘‘Maybe. I class myself as the lucky one, she's saved my ass more times then I can remember.''

Jenny thought about going back to the den, but something made her move to the kitchen table and sit instead. Maybe it was to understand exactly what she'd done. ‘'I hurt her.''

‘'I get the feeling Shannon's thinking the same thing about you.''

Jenny looked up in question.

‘'Marcus. Doesn't take a rocket scientist to see her ordering him to the mainland hurt you in some way.''

Jenny sipped her tea, more composed then she felt. ‘'Who's Cindy?''

Jane almost sat back in shock, wondering where that question had come from. ‘'Why?''

‘‘Is it someone that hurt Shannon?''

Confused Jane answered. ‘‘In a way.'' Something came to her. ‘'Did you see something to do with Cindy in one of your spooky things.''

Jenny shook her head not understanding.

‘‘You know your psychic thing, did you see Cindy?''

‘‘No. Marcus mentioned her.''

Jane clenched her jaw. ‘'Figures, I knew I shouldn't have told him.''

‘‘He didn't tell me anything, just the name and that it had something to do with Shannon's past.''

‘'Then why the hell is it important.''

Jenny looked down into her cup. ‘‘Because I threw her in Shannon's face when I told her I thought she was using Marcus.''

Jane had to swallow her anger. ‘'You did that. Without knowing exactly what happened.''

‘'I was angry I didn't….. I didn't think.''

‘‘Oh man.'' Jane stood, throwing her paperback down. ‘'That was really a shitty thing to do.''

Jenny didn't need Jane telling her how shitty it was. She bristled, having Jane pass judgment on her without knowing all the facts. ‘' I know that.''

‘‘No I don't think you do.'' Jane took a breath. ‘'Cindy was a nineteen year old hooker that was murdered, she was giving information to Shannon on a pimp who was using underage girls.''

Jenny breath caught.

‘'What people don't know and I didn't tell Marcus. Shannon had known Cindy nearly all her life, she wasn't just an informant. When Shannon found out she'd been murdered she blamed herself. If she hadn't gone to Cindy and asked for her help, she would be alive. ''

‘‘Oh god. I really didn't know.'' Her voice showed her full regret.

‘‘Well, Shannon didn't know that.'' Some of Jane's anger depleted seeing how sorry the psychic was. ‘'She probably thought you'd used your voodoo.''

Jenny gasped. ‘'I'd…I'd never use something like that against someone.''

Jane's anger came out full force. ‘‘Yea and how the hell is she supposed to know that? She wouldn't have known Marcus knew about Cindy.''

Jenny paled.

Seeing the impact her words were having, Jane calmed her anger. ‘‘Look, I don't understand what you do. All I know is if you'd said something like that to me out of the blue and I believed you could see into my past, I'd be feeling pretty violated.'' She didn't mean to be unkind, she just needed Jenny to see exactly what she'd done. She understood now why Shannon had looked so lost, so hurt. Shannon trusted the psychic, she believed in what she could do. But more importantly, Shannon had let someone in and Jane had never seen that happen before.

Jenny bit her lip, fighting the tears, she didn't want to lose it in front of Jane.

Jane felt guilty. ‘'Jenny…. I'm sor… ‘' she cursed as her cell sounded, she pulled it from her back pocket, checking the name then flicking it open. ‘'Boss?''

Jenny looked up.

Jane's eyes went to Jenny's as she heard the words in her ear. ‘'I'll tell her.''

She closed the phone, keeping her gaze locked. ‘'The F.B.I. are on their way here.''

Jenny's whole body went cold, every single wall slammed into place.


Shannon stood at the dock, waiting for the FBIs launch to arrive. She was keeping her temper in check now, although on the phone to the captain she hadn't. She was surprised she still had a job. But, the end result was the same no matter how she argued. The F.B.I. wanted to know who had worked out the clues? Who was working the case? Grieves had no option but to tell them after being ordered by the commissioner. Shannon stood straighter as she saw the launch enter the bay.


Jane was amazed at the sudden change of the woman in front of her. Less than fifteen minutes ago she'd been near tears and upset. Now, Jane had to take a second look to make sure it was the same woman.

Jenny sat cross-legged, fully composed. Her hands folded onto her lap, her eyes staring at the door. Bud, sat by her feet, his eyes going to Jenny and then to Jane in question.

Jane moved to the doorway, looking up the beach. ‘'They're here.''

Bud rose about to move forward, his eyes now alert, his ears peaked.


The command sent him back to sit. Jenny took a cleansing breath, clearing her mind and body of any remaining emotion.

Jane eyes went back to the approaching three. She didn't need to figure out which were the F.B.I. Suits, it always gave them away. Shannon walked in the middle of the two men. Jane could tell her boss was anything but happy right now. She drew back from the doorway as they entered the gate. Moving to stand just off of the left of Jenny.

Jenny let her hand stroke over bud's fur, hearing the growl start deep in his throat. ‘'Quiet.''

Bud's growl tapered off, but his body still paused for attack.

Shannon entered first stopping in the doorway, blocking the F.B.I. from entering. ‘'Is it okay if these two come in?''

‘'Do I have a choice?'' Jenny dropped her gaze to bud.

‘'Yes.'' Shannon ignored the remarks from behind. She brought her arm up fast, slamming her hand into the frame of the doorway, blocking one of the agents as he tried to move past her.

He shot her a look. ‘'Detective Rhimes need I remind you who is in charge here.''

Jane straightened, taking a small step forward.

Shannon ignored the agent next to her as he repeated himself, her eyes were locked on Jenny, waiting. Wishing the psychic would look at her. ‘'Jenny?''

‘'They can come in.''

The agent didn't wait for Shannon to drop her arm, he pushed it down. ‘'Miss Newton. I'm Agent Thomas and this is Agent Ryter. We're two of the special agents assigned to the tooth fairy task force.''

Jenny's eyes went briefly to both of them.

They stood unsure, until finally they took a seat on the sofa.

Shannon stayed at the door, leaning back against the frame, her focus was on Jenny, and she didn't like what she saw.

‘'The main reason I'm here Miss Newton is our superiors are very interested to know how you came by your information?''

Jenny knew Shannon had stiffened. But she still kept her eyes on Bud. ‘'I just worked out the clues he left.''

Thomas gave Ryter a look. ‘'I see.''

Ryter sat forward. ‘'Can you give us detailed information of your movements from the 22 nd of May this year to the present time.''

Shannon took a step forward. ‘'What the fuck is this?''

Thomas moved his eyes to her. ‘‘It's a simple enough question.''

‘'You can't seriously be thinking she has something to do with the killings?'' her eyes flicked to both the agents, seeing that they thought just that.

Ryter returned his gaze to Jenny. ‘'We are just asking about Miss Newton's whereabouts, nothing more.''

Shannon wanted to grab them both by the neck and throw them out. ‘'Miss Newton hadn't left the island until I came here two weeks ago and asked her to help on this case. I was sent by my captain as I'm sure you know.''

Ryter gaze was still locked on Jenny. ‘'Do you have proof that you haven't left the island Miss Newton?''

Jenny finally looked up.

Ryter felt himself jerk at the gaze directed at him, and the eyes.

Jenny let the knowing smile come. ‘'I don't have an alibi, which is what you're really asking. Except of course….'' She dropped her eyes to the dog.

Shannon gritted her teeth.

Thomas finally got over the shock of seeing Newton's eyes. ‘'You understand why we are asking?''

Jenny sat further back in the chair, giving him her full attention. ‘'Of course I do. I've done something your profilers haven't managed to do. I broke his code. So, the F.B.I. doesn't trust that someone else is smarter than them. They immediately assume I must be involved in some way. It's happened before when I've worked on cases with your department. I was innocent of involvement then as I am now and If you don't mind me saying it's rather egotistical to believe the F.B.I. are the only people good at breaking codes.''

Jane just managed to contain her snort.

Shannon felt herself relax a little from the anger. Giving the two agents a smug look, her eyes flickered to Jenny, worried by the tone she was using.

Thomas tensed his eyes hardening. ‘'That isn't the reason. We have to check out any leads, including helpful ones.''

Jenny crossed her arms and shrugged. ‘‘If you say so.''

Ryter had to look down to hide his smile.

Thomas however was finding no amusement in this. ‘'Well, can you expect anything less from us Miss Newton, I mean after D.C.''

Jenny flinched.

Shannon had had enough. ‘'That's it. Get out.''

Thomas head shot around to her. ‘'I think your forgetting Detective Rhimes that you are here on my say so.''

Jenny eyes snapped to him, her voice cold. ‘‘Actually Agent Thomas your wrong, she is here on mine.''

His eyes came back to her. ‘'You're not running this case Miss Newton. As of yet we haven't exactly determined what your involvement is. You don't have any say what so ever. ''

Jenny saw Shannon's movement from the corner of her eye, well aware of what the detective was about to do. ‘'Don't.''

Shannon stopped in mid step, called to the command, she looked over to find Jenny's eyes firmly locked on her.

Jenny shook her head slowly.

Thomas watched the exchange with interest.

Shannon took a calming breath, stepping back.

Jenny returned her eyes to Thomas. ‘'What do you want?''

‘'Simply your cooperation.''

‘‘And if I refuse?''

Thomas smile was a cold one. ‘'I'm afraid we would have to take you back to the mainland for full questioning.''

Ryter looked at his partner in surprise.

Shannon fists clenched. ‘'You've got to be kidding me with this bullshit.''

Thomas eyes snapped to her. ‘'I'm going to advise you for the last time Detective to keep out of this. Unless you want to be punching traffic cards.''

Jane had stood silently watching the whole exchange, seeing how quickly this could really get out of hand, she wasn't at all sure her boss wasn't about to shoot the asshole in the suit. She cleared her throat. ‘‘Um. Excuse me.''

All eyes turned to her except for Jenny's. Her eyes were firmly fixed on bud, hiding the fact she was suddenly very scared.

‘'Who are you?'' It was Thomas who spoke.

‘‘I'm Detective Emerson. I'm working on this case. I just wanted to ask a question.''

Thomas gave her a bored stare.

‘'Right, as far as I know. Miss Newton is being employed by the keys P.D as a profiler to help catch the tooth fairy and she was doing so under certain conditions?''

Ryter saw that his partner wasn't going to answer. He however was curious to know where this was going. ‘‘Yes.''

Jane scratched her chin. ‘'See, that's where I'm confused. Miss Newton's immediate superior is Captain Grieves, and, well, she can't really say or do anything without being given his express permission. No offence to you two, but if Grieves finds out Jenny has disobeyed an order or given information out without his say so, he'll make your negotiation technique seem like laurel and hardy.'' Jane gave a cocky smile. ‘‘And no offence again, I don't think he's going to take threatening her very well either. I'm also pretty sure your breaking about twenty five or so of her civil rights, cos I darn sure didn't hear you read her the Mirada or offer her a lawyer before you questioned her.''

Shannon wanted to hug her. ‘'Detective Emerson is right. You know damn well she isn't involved in this. For the past three murders she has been under full surveillance, no calls coming in or out. When she left the island she was under our full protection myself included. ''

Thomas's jaw tensed.

Ryter looked at Jenny, her first expression of this woman being cold and untouchable was wrong, he could see the tightness in her fingers as she grabbed the dogs fur. See the paleness. ‘'Miss Newton?'' he waited for her eyes to come up to his. ‘'I apologies for my partner.''

Thomas looked at him sharply.

Ryter ignored it. ‘‘You see, we really do need your help in this. We don't understand how you worked out the clues so quickly and we don't have a lot of time left to find him. I think you know that?''

Jenny simply nodded.

‘‘Well you know now why we are here. Why don't you tell us what you want in this?''

Jenny studied him, trying to find some sort of game being played, all she sensed was he was genuine. ‘'I'd already made my requests to Captain Grieves.''

Ryter smiled. ‘'So you'd like us to leave you alone while you do your work.''


‘'Even though we just came in here and tried to strong arm you, and think of you as possibly being involved in the murders?''

Jenny managed a small smile. ‘‘I'm not involved.''

‘‘No. I don't think you are. You don't want any F.B.I. assigned to you either do you?''

‘'I have more than adequate protection thank you.'' Her eyes went briefly to Jane and finally Shannon's before returning to his.

His gaze followed hers, he smiled again. ‘'I'd say much more than adequate.'' He rose. ‘‘However, please understand that we have to be sure that you have no involvement in this what so ever and we will be questioning you again. But, at the moment, I'd rather have your help in this case.''

Thomas rose, following Ryter to the door, not a happy bunny at all, but he kept his silence.

Ryter stopped, looking to Jane. ‘‘And for your information Detective. F.B.I. jurisdiction supersedes any other jurisdiction. Including contracts made with police departments….and a Miranda isn't necessary unless we are arresting her for a suspected crime.'' He grinned. ‘'But, I know you knew that.''

Jane shrugged.

He turned his attention to Shannon. ‘'I'm sure I don't need to tell you all reports now are made to the task force instead of your captain. As well as all or any information and plans being made of leaving the island again. I'll expect a detailed daily report of Miss Newton's whereabouts and work being carried out. Do I make myself clear Detective.''

Shannon answered through gritted teeth, she'd just been hog tied in red tape. ‘'Crystal.''

Ryter nodded. ‘‘Good. Now we'll see ourselves out.'' He nodded to Newton. ‘‘Thank you for your time.''

Thomas gave a curt nod to all before he followed his partner out the door.

‘‘Fucking bastards.'' Shannon slammed the door shut on them.

‘‘They're just doing their job.'' Jenny exhaled heavily, glad they were gone.

Shannon swung around. Her eyes narrowing. ‘‘Nice to see your so forgiving of people you don't know, who do their job.''

Jane winced. Her eyes going to Jenny seeing the stiffening of her shoulders. Her eyes went to her boss again seeing the anger. ‘'Do you think they'll leave us alone, or will they set up on the island?''

Shannon tore her gaze away from Jenny, blinking her anger away. ‘'They'll set someone up here, someone to watch, but undercover.''

Jane agreed. ‘‘Yea. So, what was they're real reason for coming here?''

‘'They're just marking their territory.''

Jane snorted. ‘'Figured as much. How mad was the captain?''

‘'Not as mad as I was.'' The whole time Shannon was answering, her focus had returned to Jenny. The way she sat, the way she avoided her gaze. She looked defeated, but most of all she looked scared.

Jane wasn't sure what to do.

Finally Shannon broke the silence as she opened the door. ‘'I'll be at the safe house, report in every second hour.''

Jane nodded solemnly, her eyes shifting to Jenny to see if she'd respond.

Shannon 's eyes did too, when nothing was forthcoming, she turned away.


Shannon slowly turned to face Jenny, waiting.

Jenny took a long breath as she rose. ‘‘No offence to Jane, but I would really like you back as my bodyguard.'' Jenny's voice trembled. ‘'I…. Need to know your close.'' Jenny's eyes rose, meeting Shannon 's.

Shannon exhaled, the iciness in the orbs staring at her were gone, she could see the swirls of green again, see she wasn't shut out now. She gave a nod.

Jane came out of the guestroom carrying her bag. ‘‘You still want me to check in every second hour boss.''

Shannon smiled. ‘‘No. I'll report as normal. Radio silence unless there are any problems. Update the team that the F.B.I. are more than likely setting up surveillance, I need you to update….'' She paused her eyes going to Jenny's again. ‘'…. Update Marcus.'' Shannon was relieved that Jenny didn't flinch or shut her out again.

‘‘Sure thing. Jenny speak soon okay.''

Jenny nodded, her eyes never leaving Shannon .

Jane gave a brief pat to bud. ‘'Later cutie.'' Then headed out of the house.

Jenny walked slowly until she was stood in front of Shannon , her eyes looking into the swirling blue depths. ‘'I'm sorry.''

Shannon tensed.

‘'I didn't know…. I was angry. I said the first thing in my head. But, I didn't know Shannon . I really didn't know.''

Shannon stared back, her expression totally guarded. ‘‘You didn't….. When you….'' She stopped her words.

Jenny shook her head. ‘‘No. I didn't see it. I didn't see her. I know that's hard to believe right now. But, I swear I never knew anything about her or what happened or what she meant to you.''

Shannon looked briefly to the beach and Jane's now distant figure.

Jenny followed her gaze aware of the question as the blue eye returned to her, slightly angry. ‘‘Yes. She told me. But only afterwards, she wanted me to know exactly what I'd done.''

Shannon 's anger abated a little knowing Jane hadn't broken her trust. Her jaw tensed again, her mind going over everything, wanting to believe Jenny didn't know, hadn't seen her past.

Jenny saw it all, seeing the brief glimpse of hope and at the same time the guarded look, she took another step closer. ‘'I'm so sorry please know I'd never use your past like that.'' Jenny's eyes glisten tears.

Shannon looked down, gulping the lump in her throat. ‘'Did I hurt you that much by sending Marcus away? That you had to hurt me?''

‘‘No! Oh Shannon .'' Jenny's heart broke, at the almost childlike voice she heard. She wondered just how many people had hurt Shannon in her life, that she'd come to expect words as a weapon. She managed to push her own anguish down. ‘' It made me mad yes, it hurt yes. But please believe I'm not like that, I wouldn't use something important to hurt you. If I'd known, really known what Cindy meant to you I'd have never used her name. I said it without thinking, without knowing.'' She took a cleansing breath to still her own now broken voice. ‘'I swear it Shannon ….. I'll never hurt you that way. No matter how angry I was or how hurt, I'd…. I'd never.''

Shannon let the tears flow freely, hearing the promise given. How she so wanted to believe Jenny meant it. She couldn't find her voice to acknowledge what was really being said between them, so she gave a quick nod.

Jenny couldn't take it anymore, not seeing what she'd done, seeing the pain, feeling it. She moved forward and pulled Shannon into a hug, ignoring Shannon 's stiffing body. ‘'I'm so sorry.'' She squeezed tighter, hiding her face in Shannon 's neck. ‘'I'm sorry.''

She felt Shannon arms wrap around her, safe arms, feeling Shannon 's body tremble at the contact. Jenny held on tighter, She felt Shannon shift even closer, melding their bodies, she felt the heat, felt Shannon 's warmth. Then she heard the stuttered breath and finally the shuddering which told her Shannon was crying. She felt the waves of anguish, past and present thread through her very core. Shannon 's tried to get control of her emotions and pull away. Jenny couldn't let her go, couldn't let her suffer on her own, wondering if Shannon had ever let this grief out. She moved closer still, until her head rested just above Shannon 's heart, turning her face to lay over it, hearing the steady beat, knowing the heart inside was bleeding. She was aware of her own tears falling now and then she saw. Her head jerked back, looking up to Shannon .

Shannon eyes were locked on her, her eyes silently giving permission.

Jenny closed her eyes, returning her ear to Shannon 's heart as the images filtered into her. The blood, the dumpster, the broken body and through it all she felt Shannon's screams, her pain, her loss, her rage, her bitterness and the most of all the self loathing. Jenny's tears fell now, matching Shannon 's, she gripped the detective to her tighter. Now knowing exactly what her thrown words had truly done.

‘'I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry….'' The words became Jenny's mantra, hoping they would heal the wounds she had unknowingly reopened.

She felt Shannon body tremble again as the sobs grew in strength. Jenny lowered them to the floor, not breaking contact, wrapping herself around Shannon as much as possible, giving her the same warmth and protection the detective had given her when she had been so lost.

Shannon's arms tightened, her breathing coming back under control, her sobs fading as the grief broke and returned her to reality. She shifted now embarrassed. ‘'Sorry.''

Jenny smiled her ear still to Shannon 's heart. ‘'Don't be.''

Shannon sniffed, she felt raw. ‘'I don't know where that came from.''

Jenny looked up through her fringe, seeing and feeling the embarrassment. ‘‘Maybe it was time it was let free.''


‘'Than…k.'' Jenny cleared her throat of emotion. ‘'Thank you for showing me.'' She hugged Shannon tighter, glad that the embrace was returned.

‘'I…. I didn't know if I could. But…'' Shannon sniffed, feeling the rawness again. Not knowing exactly why she'd done that. She didn't know what to say. ‘'Your welcome.''

Jenny knew she'd have to deal with the fact Shannon could show her at a later time. She'd been surprised at the jolt she felt when the image had been directed at her. It hadn't happened before that way. Jenny studied Shannon's face, seeing she was having a hard time showing and giving so much, reluctantly Jenny pulled away, about to rise.

Shannon caught her hand.

Jenny looked across in question.

Shannon lent forward and laid a barely touching kiss on Jenny's knuckles.

Jenny breath stopped.

Shannon held her gaze. ‘'Thank you.''

Jenny blinked. Fully aware of the brief kiss and the fact Shannon still held her hand. ‘'For what?''

‘'For being you.'' Shannon let go of her hand, rising, brushing off her jeans. She looked nervously around. ‘'I…. A…. I need to freshen up.''

Jenny mutely nodded, still kneeling on the floor. She watched as Shannon left. She looked down at her hand, running her thumb over where lips had touched. Taking a shaking breath, she rose. Her gaze searching until she found bud, laying watching, by the table. ‘'I'm in so much trouble.''

His head came up and he ‘'arfted' in agreement.


Marcus was bored, he lifted his drink sipping it, welcoming the honey burn on his throat, his eyes gazed around the bar. He'd ended up here on a hunch of sorts. He'd been to each of the crime scenes again and he had to admit doing it at night scared the shit out of him. But, he'd only gotten one hit, one sense. So here he was in Mike's bar. Just four blocks from the library where the fourth victim had been found. He wasn't sure why the hit had brought him here, but it did. If he stretched his senses he could feel the buzzing in his veins, the same feeling he'd gotten when he touched the library steps. He knew from Jenny that the killer hadn't been there with the victim, which had been lowered by the rope. So, why did he get a distinct sense of ‘poppies' again. He'd turned from the library, walking the open area, until he felt the pull, he'd followed the direction, winding through the back streets, until he lost it, right outside Mike's bar. The hunch was he felt the killer had walked the whole area, even visited the library, and for some reason had visited the bar.

He gave a smile to the bartender, turning his head to give her an appreciative look of her body as she moved towards another customer. He jumped slightly as he felt his cell phone vibrate, looking down at the caller I.D., his smile changed to a genuine one. Flipping it open he raised it to his mouth.

‘'Delectable Jane. What do I owe the honor?'' he sipped his drink, imaging her rolling her eyes.

Jane rolled her eyes, she listened trying to pick out the sounds around him. All she really picked out was how tired he sounded. ‘'Have you slept?''

He chuckled. ‘‘Is that an offer to tuck me in and tell me a bedtime story?''

‘'I don't do stories.''

He laughed. ‘‘Oh I bet you do. Wild ones too.''

Jane inhaled, wondering why the hell this guy made her bristle so much. ‘'Marcus this is serious. Stop screwing around…. '' She paused, hearing something. ‘'Are you in a bar?''

‘'That's a yes.'' His eyes went to the bartender again.

‘'You found a lead in a glass of southern comfort?'' she snorted in disgust.

His eyes jumped to the glass at his lips in surprise. ‘'Do you have me bugged?''

She laughed. ‘‘No, you're the sort to drink that shit.''

He frowned, putting the glass down, pushing it away. ‘‘And in answer to your question, yes I am here on a lead. It's a bar a few blocks from victim number four. I think our guy watched them here.''


‘‘Yes really.'' He wasn't in the mood to go through the whole disbeliever thing. ‘'So, why did you call?''

‘'The F.B.I. are on the case. They visited Jenny earlier. The boss wanted you to know. I don't think they know you're involved, so you shouldn't be under surveillance.''

He tensed, twisting slightly to take in the full view of the bar area. His eye's searching. ‘'How did Jenny handle it? Was she okay?''

Once again Jane found herself surprised by the genuine emotion in his voice. ‘'She was freaked, but the boss made sure she was okay.''

He smiled. ‘'I bet she did.''

Jane wanted to know what that meant, but held her tongue. ‘'Tell me about this bar?''

‘‘Mike's place.''

She scoffed. ‘'That's original.''

He grinned. ‘'Ahuh. Pretty much a standard bar. Most of the drinkers here are from the mall and library area and passing visitors Workers come here for lunch and after work. I'm sure if you check you'll find out the victim did.''

‘'She has a name.'' Her voice was sharp.

He looked down. ‘'I know Jane. I do know. But…. It's easier for me not to get too personal. When I sense something I need to know I'm not confusing it with something I've learnt. I know you don't understand what the hell I mean.'' He rubbed his eye, suddenly feeling tired.

‘'I guess.''

He sighed. ‘'It has three late night events, bands come in. I know the victim didn't work in the area, so I'm guessing the thread I feel is because they came here for another reason.''

She chewed her lip. ‘'Do you really think our guy went there and watched them? Came out into the open that much?''

Marcus reached across taking the last gulp of his drink. ‘‘Yea. He did. What's open about it?'' his eyes went to his own reflection in the bar mirror in front of him. ‘'Tell me Jane. How many men would you notice in a bar, drinking alone. Kept to themselves, didn't look like they were prowling for company. You'd assume they were waiting for someone. In fact you wouldn't give them another look.''

Jane exhaled sharply. ‘‘Good point. Why you so sure it's our prep?''


‘‘Excuse me?''

He smiled. ‘‘Just tell Jenny I found something, I'm not sure what yet. She'll understand if you say ‘poppies'.''

Jane scratched her neck. ‘‘If you say so…. Look, I'll arrange for someone to go down there and show the victims picture and ask some questions again. You going to stay there?''

Marcus shifted to pull his wallet out, tilting his head to trap the phone against his neck. He pulled out a few bills, laying them on the counter. ‘'No. There's nothing else here. I'm going to get some sleep then head out to the crime scenes again tomorrow.'' He rose, walking free from the bar, standing outside, filling his lungs with the fresh air. ‘'I'll call if I find anything.''

‘'Sure…. Um….'' She suddenly got a bad feeling. ‘'Be careful okay. You don't have any back up.''

His grin creased his cheeks. ‘'Why Jane, you sound like you care.''

She rolled her eyes again, annoyed he'd gotten to her so easily. ‘'You wish.''

He laughed, hearing the click of the call ending. Placing the cell back in his pocket his face still showed his amusement. Zipping his jacket up he headed back towards the main street. Suddenly he stopped, the smile falling from his face as he twisted around, feeling the sharp pulse of a thread. He felt his heart rate stutter as he sensed it, sensed something, something close. He fell to one knee, placing his hand flat on the tarmac, running his fingers over it, ignoring the people now staring at him. His fingers paused. He looked up, his eyes drawn to the area just west of him. Quickly he stood, and started jogging towards the nearby alley.


Jenny had been leading against the doorframe for about ten minutes. She knew she was being decadent just watching the detective work, it was a guilty pleasure she found she was becoming addicted too. Shannon was so different when she was unguarded. In the past ten minutes, she'd found out whatever Shannon was working on was something that confused her, annoyed, frustrated. Each and every emotion briefly had flickered across the detectives face. Now, Jenny was intrigued to know what was causing such emotions.

‘'What you working on?''

Shannon jumped, her head whipping around. ‘'Christ. How long you been there?''

Jenny smiled, pushing off from the frame. ‘‘Long enough to know something is pissing the hell out of you.'' She moved to the laptop, her gaze going briefly to the screen. Surprised at what she saw her eyes went to Shannon. ‘'The victims.''

Shannon sat back, rubbing the tension in her neck. ‘'I can't figure out how he gets to them? I mean they all come from good backgrounds, they're not overly outgoing people. Hell, two of them, family members said they wouldn't trust anyone. So, how does he get them to go with him?''

Jenny's eyes read through the report on the screen from victim two. ‘‘Is there still no link to tie them together?''

‘‘Nope. They weren't even from the same area of the keys. We can't tie even a coffee shop to them. None of them moved in the same circles. ‘' she reached over pulling a list she printed. ‘' he took two of them on the way to work. One, while jogging. One, while out at night to a bar. One, on a hike. Two more just disappeared after they left their house to go shopping. ‘'

Jenny sympathized at how frustrating it was. ‘'Shannon. You've got to understand, he hasn't preplanned how he takes them, he looks for an opening that's all.''

Shannon rose. ‘‘Yea I know that. But what makes these people trust him?'' her arm swept out, motioning to the victim board. ‘'What the hell makes a twenty and forty year old man trust another man to go with him.''

‘‘Those two are easy.''

Shannon looked at her in question.

‘‘They didn't see him as a threat. Males rarely see another male as a threat unless they show aggression. Or they look like a danger. He would have appeared meek and mild to them, or needed their help in some way.''

Shannon's eyes went back to the board. ‘‘And the women?''

Jenny sighed. ‘‘Shannon this is pretty standard psyche 101. The F.B.I. profile will tell you the same thing.''

Shannon waited.

Jenny sighed again. ‘‘He would have been overly charming, he will be handsome. His clothes will be well tailored, comfortable. Women tend not to trust ugly or scruffy men. More than likely appeared to need their help, he would have appeared embarrassed about it: Lost child, lost animal, Car broken down. Directions. They would have trusted him because he was sincere…. The two he took from near their homes were the two who didn't trust and were less likely to help a stranger. He knew any guises wouldn't work with them, so he had to get them hard and fast. They wouldn't have really known what hit them when they were taken.''

Shannon shook her head. ‘‘In today's world I'm surprised anyone trusts or helps anyone anymore.''

Jenny's eyes went to her. ‘'Shannon. Don't let people like him taint what is still good in the world. As human beings we trust, we want to help others. Not everyone is like him, not everyone has a hidden agenda.''

Shannon smiled sadly. ‘‘Says the woman who has hidden away from the world for two years.''

Jenny returned the smile hearing no malice in the words. ‘‘Touché. But I was given a reason not to trust.'' She shrugged her shoulders. ‘'I'm learning I was wrong. It didn't do anything except let the basterd win.'' She swallowed, hugging herself. It was one thing to know the answer it was another to fight the fear of memory.

Shannon met her eyes, seeing the green swirl again, this time it was stronger. ‘'I'm glad you've realized.''

‘‘Me too. You gonna be okay?''

Shannon looked back at the pictures of all the victims. ‘‘Yea, when we catch him.''

‘'Do the F.B.I. have the two possible drop sites covered?''


Jenny studied her face. ‘‘But, you don't think it's enough do you?''

Shannon face-hardened. ‘‘Is it ever enough anything we do? I want him caught before he kills again is that so much to ask.''

‘'Shannon.'' Jenny's voice showed the fact she thought that was impossible in the timeline left. She knew he probably had his next victim all picked out, if not taken already.

‘'I know. Okay. I know no matter how fast we work, how fast we break his clues, he will always put himself ahead in the timeline. He's still playing to his game. The only real chance we have of catching him is when he dumps the body, that's if we're right.''

Jenny wasn't sure what to say. ‘'I still have some leads to work on. Have you finished with the laptop?''

Shannon's eyes were fixed on the photographs. ‘'Go ahead. I have to check in with Jane anyway.'' She finally let her eyes leave the victims, making her way to the door.

‘'Would it break the rules to ask Jane over here later?''

Shannon paused, turning to face her. ‘'Why?''

Jenny sat down at the laptop, calling open the files she'd been working on. ‘'I like the way her mind works, she was helpful yesterday.''

‘‘My mind not good enough now?''

Jenny looked over her shoulder, smiling, hearing the teasing tone. Resisting the urge to tease back and let the detective know she loved her mind and found it sexy as hell. No. That was dangerous territory to go into right now. She looked back to the laptop, containing her blush. ‘‘She doesn't believe I have any magic powers, you however now do. When I ask her a question she answers without thinking. It helped, I'm hoping it will help again. Is it a problem?''

Shannon tried to figure out what exactly Jenny did want with Jane. ‘‘No. Not a problem. I can get another part of the team to watch the surveillance, it just surprised me.''

‘‘I suddenly wanted house guests?'' Jenny hid her amusement.

Shannon looked to the floor, sheepishly. ‘‘Something like that. Anyway I'll arrange it. Eight, okay?''

Jenny looked at the laptop clock; it gave her just over four hours. ‘‘Yes perfect. Thank you.''

Shannon nodded, heading out of the den. Pulling her cell phone free.


Marcus was tired, he'd been following the ‘poppy' trail now for over three hours. Sometimes losing it and then finding it when he was about to give up and go to his hotel room and sleep. He was now near the park area of the third victim. He was beginning to get an uneasy feeling about the whole trail, it was as if he was being led somewhere. He'd talked himself into believing it was just his over active imagination. One thing he did know as he moved into the park itself. The trail he was following now, wasn't something from three months ago, this one was alive, too present time. In a way it didn't surprise him he'd picked up a more resent trail, it wasn't a far reach for a sadistic killer to revisit the scene, for some it wasn't a logical act it was a need a deep rooted urge, to relive the feelings, to relive the power.

The more Marcus followed the more he began to believe the thread he was following, the killer had been back. He stopped, looking around the parkland, seeing the families play, seeing the students sitting to study. The park didn't hold any of the eeriness he felt inside. The one question rattling around in his brain as he stepped in the direction of where the body had lay, was exactly how long ago did the killer come back? And how close was he following in his footsteps. He paused, stilling his body, feeling the poppy's again. What was that? Why was it so prominent in the killer's mind?

Why couldn't the killer distance himself from it? Like he did the rest of his emotions. What hold did it have and why?

He passed through the woodland until he reached the area by the river and bridge, stopping near where the body laid. Sometimes he wished he was like Jenny, that he could just reach out his senses and catch the essence. He looked around, moving away from the area, towards the river, reaching up he grabbed hold of a branch to steady himself as he stepped over a fallen rotting tree. His body shivered, his eyes going upward to where his hand still held the limb. It was there, the poppies again, so strong, it tingled his skin. His eyes shot around the area, trying to peer into the trees around. He dropped his hand stepping back slowly, his hand shaking as he reached for his cell phone, backing away from the trees and the river's edge as if they held the devil himself. He didn't he'd been this afraid in his life.

Shannon looked up as her cell sounded, reaching across, she saw who was calling, she flicked it open. ‘'Marcus?''

He swallowed to keep his voice steady. ‘'Listen. He's revisiting the sites, all of them.''

Shannon sat straight, she could hear his fear. ‘'You're sure? Where are you?''

He ran his hand through his hair, as his head shifted from left to right, searching the area around him. ‘'Yes I'm fucking sure. I've been tracking him all day from crime scene to crime scene. I'm at the park, I think the basterd is watching me.''

‘'I believe you. Now get out of there. I'll send a unit down to pick you up.''

He started walking backwards, unable to face front away from where he knew the killer had last stood. Then it went, as suddenly as it came, the feeling of ‘poppies' vanished. ‘‘No…. No it's okay. I'm fine. Just scared the shit out of me for a minute. He's gone.'' He calmed his breathing.

‘'You're sure?''

He glanced around, now calmer, his right hand opening, feeling the air. ‘'Yea. He's gone…. I…. Can't sense him…. He'll be long gone by the time you get anyone here.''

Shannon didn't want to believe in his talent, but she found she did. Jenny had changed any doubting Thomas in her. ‘'Get the fuck out of there now! ‘'

‘'I'm going Jesus. Stop shouting. It's not worth sending anyone down here. They won't find anything. Shit…. I should have been more careful. Shannon I'm sorry.''

Shannon cursed under her breath. ‘'Marcus. Listen to me. I want you back at the damn hotel room. I don't want Jenny kicking my ass, if she finds out I put you in danger.''

That made him smile. ‘‘Little spitfire isn't she.''

Shannon relaxed hearing his voice lose some of the fear. ‘‘No shit….'' She could hear his labored breathing. ‘'Marcus?''

He finally turned to face the direction he was walking, almost stumbling as he increased his strides. ‘‘Yea I'm here. I'm nearly back to the path.''

Shannon exhaled the tension she felt. ‘'Just stay on the phone till you're out of the park.''

He smiled, feeling the inner relief as his feet hit the path and he started walking towards the park entrance. ‘'Two women in one day.''


‘'Jane was worried about me too.''

‘‘As I said I don't need Jenny kicking my ass. As for Jane, she more worried about me kicking hers.''

He laughed.

Shannon could pick up the sounds of people in the background. ‘'Where are you now?''

‘‘At the entrance, I'm okay.'' He stopped, taking in deep breaths. ‘' I'm gonna take a cab back to the hotel.''

‘'Call Jane when you get there. I'll advise the F.B.I. that he's visiting the sites, we might get lucky. And Marcus make sure you call her as soon as you get safe, otherwise I'll have her kick your ass.''

‘‘Some people pay money for that you know.''

She laughed, glad his humor was back. ‘'Marcus?''

He held his hand up to hail a cab. ‘‘Yea.''

‘‘If you go out again tomorrow, you're taking a police escort whether you like it or not.''

‘'I'm not going to argue.'' He pulled open the cab door, bending to get in. ‘'Thanks Shannon.'' He closed the door, finally relaxing.

‘‘No worries. Get some sleep you sound wrecked.''

‘‘Yea. Say hi to Jen for me.''

‘'I will.''

He closed the phone, giving his directions to the cab driver, leaning his head back on the seat as the cab pulled away. Somehow he knew, he'd just been as lucky as hell and the only thing that had saved him, was his talent, and the thread of poppies.


Jenny looked up smiling, as Shannon entered, her smile froze. ‘'What's wrong?''

‘‘Before you panic. Marcus is fine. He called me about half an hour ago, he thinks the killer is revisiting the sites and….''

Jenny kept telling herself Marcus was fine. ‘‘And?''

‘‘He was pretty sure the killer was watching him. I just heard from Jane. Marcus is safe back at the hotel, I've sent a car down there to watch out for him.''

Jenny relaxed. ‘'Thank you.''

‘‘Don't thank me. He was in danger because I sent him remember?''

Jenny caught the bitter tone and also the self-loathing one. ‘'Shannon.''

It amazed Shannon how many different ways Jenny could say her name, right now it was spoken so softly it could have been a prayer. She closed her eyes to it.

Jenny waited, seeing that Shannon wasn't going to talk anymore she turned her attention back to the screen, pressing print.

Shannon opened her eyes as the sound of the printer started. ‘'What's that?''

‘‘Something I want to show Jane, and ask her what she sees?''

‘‘Why don't you ask me?''

Jenny hid her amusement at the almost pout she heard. ‘‘You'll see it too….'' She turned her eyes to Shannon. ‘‘You figured out why I've asked Jane yet?''

‘‘Not really. It's been bugging me for hours.''

Jenny laughed. ‘'I bet.'' She rose collecting the printed sheets. Over Shannon's shoulder she saw bud raise his head, knowing it meant Jane was close to the house. Her eyes went to Shannon's waiting to see if she would know yet.

Shannon turned. ‘'She's here.''

Jenny grinned. Someday she really was going to have to have a talk to the detective about that skill she didn't know she had.


Jane was nervous, she was nervous because once again she didn't know why she was at Jenny's house. This time was different the boss was there, but still it made her nervous. She sat, waiting, the beer in her hand, swinging, showing her growing annoyance at not knowing what was going on. She looked up as they both came in from the den.

Jenny smiled as she sat, ‘'Bet you're wondering why I asked for you?''

‘‘You could say that.'' Jane looked to Shannon for an answer.

Shannon shrugged, sitting, sipping her beer. ‘'Don't ask me it's her show.''

Jane's eyes went back to Jenny, waiting.

Jenny took a breath, opening the files she'd printed off. Laying out the sheets in a row on the coffee table. ‘'Right, we all know the killer is a classic psychopath.''

Jane and Shannon nodded.

Jenny continued. ‘‘He takes the victims in various ways, taking any opening as an opportunity. Ketimin is used and so is GBH. He kills them by injecting an air bubble into the veins.'' She looked to both of them, they nodded again. ‘'Why?''

Jane and Shannon looked at each other in surprise. Jane frowned. ‘'Why?''

Jenny sat back, laying her hands on her legs. ‘‘Yes why? Why kill them that way?'' she looked to each of them in turn as she spoke. ‘'It can't give him any pleasure, there's no agonizing death. It takes only two to three minutes for them to die, that's a very short period of time. He can't get much of a hit of power.''

Shannon shook her head not understanding the point. ‘'So, he tortures them. Maybe he gets his kicks from that?''

Jenny shook her head. ‘‘What torture? Where exactly is the torture.''

Shannon didn't know why but she was getting angry. ‘'The knife wounds for starters.''

Jenny shrugged. ‘‘Superficial at best.''

Jane scoffed. ‘'The tooth must hurt like a son of bitch.''

Jenny looked blankly at her. ‘'All taken after death. Except one and she didn't count to him.''

Jane shifted embarrassed, she'd known that.

Shannon clenched her teeth. ‘‘The rape. You can't tell me he isn't getting a high from that.''

Jenny swallowed, holding her own emotions at bay. ‘‘He only raped two of the victims and it had little to do with torture or to cause them fear. It was about his lust, he wanted them, and they were psychically attractive. He isn't a sexual sadist, he isn't getting aroused by doing this. In fact, I believe the rapes were a loss of control.''

Shannon frowned, thinking, then shook her head. ‘'I don't see what you're getting at.''

Jenny nodded, leaning forward she opened the folder, passing each of them a copy of the medical reports from within it. She waited a few moments before speaking. ‘'Each of the victims bodies held the drug that subdued them, normally after twelve hours these types of drugs can't be traced. We know from their disappearance reports, he had all seven of them for more than twenty-four hours. Which means he's using it to keep them quiet.'' She met Shannon's gaze. ‘'Where's the hit of power? They wouldn't be afraid, they'd be unconscious half the time or totally out of it. Here's another thing that doesn't make sense to me. We've proved at least four of the victims died by the air injection, it's too late to detect in the others, but as the cause of death is similar we can assume he used it. The damage to the body by him is very minimal. The way he restrained them is as well. The after death marks are the same, as is the tooth extractions.'' Jenny's fists clenched in her lap. ‘'None of it makes sense. Where is his hit of power? No fear, no pain! The only hit I can see is his game, his clues, the part of him that has to tell us how clever he is. That! Fits with a psychopath profile. The rest doesn't.''

Shannon inhaled. ‘'So, now you're saying he isn't a psychopath?''

Jenny picked up on the medical reports, waving it. ‘'Not according to this. No.'' she threw the report down. ‘'I started to look at it a different way. I came up with only one plausible answer. He's holding himself back. Which led me to the question? Why?''

Jane looked over the list. Knife wounds. No beatings. Bruising caused by restrains only. No torture. Victims weren't malnourished. No dehydration. Clean.

Jenny watched her.

‘‘He wasn't trying to hurt them, he was feeding them. Taking care of them in his own sick way.''

Jenny grinned, she knew she'd been right to ask Jane. Jane said what she saw. She wasn't like Shannon, she didn't look for a reason in an answer. Jane's instinct was to act first, say first. ‘‘Yes exactly the conclusion I came up with too.''

Shannon looked at the list. ‘‘How the hell can you say that? He kidnapped them, held them for up to two days, killed them for Christ sake.''

Jenny sighed. ‘‘He doesn't want to harm their body is what I meant.''

‘'So what?''

Jenny's eyes hardened. ‘'So. Why? Because the why is important.''

Shannon threw down the paper. Slamming down her beer. ‘'Important. How? Why do we have to know, what's the difference? Kill them, torture them, and rape them. Does it really mean a damn to him.''

Jane's took a swig of beer, her brown eyes shifting to Shannon, knowing the signs of anger well.

Jenny kept her voice level, well aware this was the Shannon's frustration. ‘'Yes it does mean a damn to him, otherwise he'd let his other side out. The part of him that wants to rape, to torture, to cause the up most pain. To hit the high he needs every time. He has to feel the power of life in his hands. He's only full filling one side of his psyche. Don't you see, in holding back, he denies the power. It doesn't make sense Shannon, he's fighting it. The only time it showed was is in the two women he raped…. So why the hell does he hold it back? What reason?''

Shannon tensed. ‘'Does there have to be one, this is more of psycho one on one bullshit. He's a killer isn't it enough!''

Jenny was disappointed. ‘‘If we want to see into his head no…. Isn't that why I'm here? To see him, I have to know him, and right now I don't.''

‘‘His head is full of crap. We're going to catch him. We don't need to know how he ticks anymore.''

Jenny tried to contain her anger. ‘'Damn it Shannon. You wanted to catch him before he dumps another body remember. To have a chance at stopping him, to have a chance I need to know why? Or is that no longer a concern? We simply wait till he dumps the next one.''

Jane eyes snapped to Jenny, not liking the way her voice had turned to ice.

Shannon flinched. ‘'You know I don't want that.''

Jenny felt it. She realized what she was doing. Withdrawing her anger, distancing herself. She shifted forward. ‘'Then stop arguing with me. I need your help…. We need to know why he stops himself? He's fighting his own wants; he's fighting who he is. The fact he can amazes me. Don't you see? There are more knife cuts on the last two victims then the first four, more abuse, they held fewer drugs in their system, which means it's getting harder to control by him. The victim he threw away shows us this more than anything Shannon. She was unclean so it didn't matter if he abused, beat, cut, and dumped. But he still controlled himself to some degree, he should have tortured her. Not even then could he let go. So whatever is restraining him is pretty damn important to him. Which means it's important to us.'' Jenny's voice rose. ‘'We have to know…. Why the hell is he fighting it and not letting it out! It's important we find out, if we want to get him first.''

Jane had been listening, but decided to stay right out of it. She was learning quickly her boss and the psychic were just as stubborn as each other and somehow she knew yelling at each other would eventually get them to an answer. She winced as Shannon's voice.

‘'Then tell me the fuck how? How are we supposed to do that!?''

Jenny's locked eyes with her. ‘'I don't know. That's why I'm doing this. Showing you what I've found. Please try to look at it with an open mind. I need to know what you think, what you both think.''

Shannon scoffed, ‘'I can't see into this sick fuck's head. I'm a cop not a damn head shrink.''

‘'Damn it Shannon .'' Jenny was beginning to find this side of Shannon annoying as hell.

Jane caught herself smiling in time before either of them saw it. Instead she turned her attention to rereading the forensic and medical reports. Absentmindedly she voiced her thoughts, into the momentary silence. ‘‘Maybe he's been taught not to hurt.''

Jenny anger froze, turning her head sharply to Jane. ‘‘What did you say?''

Jane found when she looked up Jenny's eyes were boring into her. She shifted uncomfortably. ‘‘Um….'' She swallowed. ‘'I said maybe, he's been taught not to hurt. Sorry if I said something wrong.''

Jenny's eyes widened. ‘‘Oh my god.'' She shot up running back into the study.

Bud looked up surprised as she shot past him.

Jane looked at Shannon , slightly alarmed. ‘‘Um boss?''

Shannon shook her head, still feeling the anger. ‘‘Like I'd know what the hell is going on around here.''

They both turned their head as Jenny came running back in. Jenny stopped, throwing down a picture onto the coffee table. She motioned to both of them. ‘‘Look at it please. I need to know what you see?''

Shannon lent forward. Now she was more confused than ever. ‘'I don't recognize it.''

Jane frowned, somehow it was familiar. She lifted it to study closer. ‘'I think I know it. But, well, I'm not sure why I do. What is it?''

Jenny was trying to rearrange her thoughts, how in the hell had she missed this. ‘‘It's the symbol used for Ophiuchus, the 13 th sign of the Lunar Zodiac – also known as Serpentarius, the Serpent Holder. Why is it familiar?''

Jane shrugged. ‘'I don't know…. I've seen it before I'm sure I have.''

Jenny nodded. ‘' Shannon , please look at it again…. Please.''

Jane passed it over.

Shannon took it, looking at it intently, then shaking her head she threw it back down to the coffee table. ‘‘Sor…'' she stopped. The picture had fallen sideways, seeing it at an angle it suddenly struck her as familiar. ‘‘Wait. I have seen it.''

Jenny took a long breath. ‘' Ophiuchus isn't the only name this has. Each culture names their own stars, much like they did their gods. Like the Greek god of war was Ares. Roman culture it was Mars. Norse had Oden. Ophiuchus has other names too. One of them comes from Egyptian, he was known as Imhotep. The ancient Greeks called….'' She swallowed.

Jane and Shannon were caught in the sudden buzz of energy in the room. Shannon knew it was coming from Jenny.

Jane didn't, she thought it was the excitement she was feeling. ‘'Called him what?''

Jenny looked right at her. ‘' Aesclepius'' she slowly turned her head to Shannon , knowing her choice of reading material, wondering if she recognized the name.

Shannon 's brow creased, then her eyes jumped to the picture, now seeing why it was familiar, her surprised eyes crawled to Jenny's. ‘‘Aesclepius is said to be the founder of modern medicine….''

Jenny slowly nodded. Wondering if Shannon would get the full connection now, like she had when Jane had given her the final clue.

Jane laughed, clapping her hands. ‘‘Son of bitch. That's why I know it. All the medics have it on the insignia, shit it's even on the damn hospitals.'' Her joy faltered. Confusion filled her eyes. She looked to Jenny. ‘‘Hey wait, what's this got to do with anything?''

Jenny didn't answer she was too busy watching Shannon 's brain at work.

Shannon exhaled, seeing what Jenny was getting at. Her voice was a whisper. ‘‘Do no harm to others.''

Jenny closed her eyes, she knew Shannon had worked it out. ‘‘Yes.''

Jane looked sharply across. ‘‘That's the oath isn't it? I mean the doctor's thing?''

Jenny nodded, she folded her arms, feeling the chill, knowing it was Shannon .

Shannon stilled. Her mind now catching up to where Jenny's was already.

Hearing Jane's words from earlier. ‘‘Maybe he was taught not to hurt.'' Shannon began to understand, she directed her question to Jenny. ‘'Could this be enough to hold him back? This?'' She tapped the picture.

Jenny nodded. ‘‘Yes.''

Jane knew she was missing something and wondered if the two of them were communicating by telepathy. ‘‘Someone mind filling me?''

Shannon closed her eyes looking away. When she opened them she was looking right at Jane. ‘‘He's taken the Hippocratic Oath.''

Jane blinked, looking to the picture suddenly getting the connection. ‘‘Holy shit. He's a doctor? Wait, he thinks he is? Or is one.''

Jenny sat back down. ‘‘I'm not sure. But he has trained in the medical profession, fully trained. You gave me the answer Jane.''

Jane face shot up from the picture, in surprise. ‘‘Me?''

Jenny smiled. ‘‘Ahuh. I asked why he doesn't let his dark side out. You told me, because he's been taught not to harm. An oath Jane, he gave his oath and that would be a strong enough thing not to break. He has an important sense of honor, he'd have to keep something sacred like an oath. Even if it does go against what he is. To break his word would be a dishonor to himself, be flawed, make him less then he thinks he is. Would bring him down to our level. How could he believe himself to be beyond god if he did that? He believes he's above any worldly laws and power, but this is different this oath goes back to the Greek gods. To break this would be near impossible for him. So, he has to fight the side of him that wants to cause harm, wants to cause pain, and wants to rape. He fights his psychopath side.'' Her gaze went to Shannon. ‘‘He is very strong to be able to do that. I think his psychic side helps him in some way. A normal psychopath would have no qualms about breaking an oath. They have no conscience, no emotion. I don't think I've ever heard of this happening before, except where split personalities were involved and now I can't rule that possibility out. He could have a dual personality Shannon. One he doesn't even know about. It would explain why I couldn't sense him or Marcus couldn't get a hit off of him.''

Shannon felt the ice go through, her, she looked up meeting worried translucent green eyes.

Jane didn't like the idea of the killer having spooky powers one bit. She shivered, trying to bring the conversation back to something she could handle. ‘‘Wait, He kills them, isn't that breaking the oath?''

Jenny's attention went back to Jane. ‘‘To him no. Because killing them, is helping them. Freeing them from the pain of the world, keeping them from harm.''

Jane's own anger sparked. ‘‘How the hell can he believe that?''

‘‘Because he believes it. He believes in what he's doing Jane. In everything he's doing. If he does have split personalities, that is the more dominant side, the part that executes the victims.''

Jane swallowed, she hated dealing with psitzoids. You never knew which one of them was shooting at you. She shivered, taking a long gulp of beer.

Shannon broke in. ‘' Imhotep . You said that was the Egyptian name?''

‘‘Yes.'' Jenny's attention went to the question.

‘‘He was healer like Asclepius?''

‘'They're based on the same man. It's just different cultures. Different names.'' Jenny wondered where Shannon was going with this.

‘‘So is he basing himself on them? Or is it his worldly oath that is stopping him?''

Jenny thought it through before answering. ‘‘No. he wouldn't think of himself as either of these men. His oath is real, not a fantasy of the past, or of him pretending to be someone else. Everything around him is real, especially something that holds him back from being who he is. ‘' Jenny's voice tailed off as she got what Shannon meant.

Shannon nodded. ‘‘That's what I thought.''

‘‘What are you thinking? Boss?''

Shannon met Jane's gaze. ‘‘He's still practicing medicine. He's either a doctor, or a surgeon, or a nurse anything that requires taking the Hippocratic Oath. If he'd been struck off or left it behind, he wouldn't still have an oath that would stop him, it would be broken. He'd be going at his victim's full force.'' She stood. ‘‘The son of bitch is still on a record as a medical employee somewhere in the area. One which has access to surplus of ketamin, GBH and medical equipment and cleaning fluid he'd need.''

Jane exhaled bitterly. ‘‘Yea and who is the one person you'd trust if they came up to you and needed help….''

Jenny paled. ‘'Any medical personal, especially if he showed his credentials. He would have too, he knew they were going to die, they'd be no need to hide his identity from them. He never took them in a place he'd be seen.''

Shannon turned to Jane. ‘‘Get back to the safe house I want you to contact the F.B.I. and update them on this, all of it. I'll take care of the captain. We already have a lot of medical areas checked out when we investigated the drugs. I also want you to call Marcus and warn him.'' Her eyes shifted to Jenny, seeing the flash of relief.

Jane stood, nodding, already turning for the door.


She looked to Jenny.

‘'thank you.''

Jane grinned. ‘‘No problem, I'm still not sure what the hell I did.'' With that she left at a run.

Jenny turned her attention to Shannon, seeing the anger, knowing why. ‘‘You can leave. Call in the launch you could be back at the precinct by midnight.''

Shannon jerked out of the thoughts. ‘‘What?''

‘'I said you can go. I know you want too, to be there to help look for him, to catch him. To do the job you've trained for and are good at. I know you can't do that from here.''

‘‘They can do all that.''

‘'But, you want to be in on the finish. Don't you?''

‘‘We could be wrong.''

Jenny forced a smile. ‘‘We're not. We haven't been so far have we?''

Shannon felt torn. ‘‘No.''

‘'Then go. Go tell them, go help them. ‘' Jenny took a step closer. ‘'Be where you want to be.''

Shannon's eyes fell. ‘'I promised I'd protect you. I meant it, I'm not leaving till he's caught.''

Jenny exhaled. ‘'Then I release you from it. Shannon I'm safe. He doesn't know about me. Even if he did he wouldn't have time to get to me. I have your team, I have the F.B.I. now as my damn shadow on the island. Jane will protect me. Do you doubt she will?''

Shannon turned to her. ‘‘No. it's, it's not that……''

‘'Then what?'' Jenny tried to read her eyes.

‘'I don't want to leave here then find out something happened to you, I'd never forgive myself.''

Jenny was caught between feeling sadness and annoyance. ‘'damn it Shannon you can't always take the weight of the world on your shoulders. I can take care of myself, and Jane will be here. She can even stay in the house. Shannon I don't want you to look back after this if the F.B.I. screw this up and he gets away, you'll end up hating me because you wanted to stay because of a promise. Go.''

Shannon found herself being pushed towards the guestroom. ‘'I could never hate you. What are you doing?''

Jenny pushed her again. ‘‘Giving you a push in the right direction. Stop being so honorable and you could quite easily hate me if something goes wrong. So, I'm not taking the risk. Just go.''

‘'I belong here and stop shoving me.'' She stepped away from the next push.

Jenny sighed, not really wanting Shannon to leave. ‘‘You don't belong here. You belong where you can do the most good and babysitting me isn't it. You can find him Shannon. You can. You know how he thinks. Now will you please go? ‘' she caught Shannon's shoulder turning her again to the doorway, pushing.

Blues eyes sparked at being pushed again. She turned facing her. ‘'I know jack shit. Are you forgetting I came here less than two weeks ago with nothing? We only know what we know because of you. I wouldn't even know him if he walked past me.''

Jenny very much doubted that, she knew Shannon would know, she would sense the wrongness in this man, like she sensed other things, she would get ‘one of her feelings' she kept those thoughts to herself. ‘'Shannon please.''

‘‘No. I'm staying. Besides you really think the F.B.I. are going to even let me get within a mile of him. No. they are not. Closed arrest. Their jurisdiction. So enough, I'm staying. Excuse me, I need to tell the captain about this because I know damn well the F.B.I. won't be.'' She moved past her.

‘‘Arrrrrrrrghhhhhh. You so god damn stubborn!'' she threw the first thing to hand.

Shannon jumped as the book impacted the wall, turning to the outburst in surprise, then found herself grinning.

‘‘What the hell are you grinning at.''

‘‘My mom would say you have one hell of an Irish temper on ya lassy.''

Jenny burst out laughing. It broke the buildup of pressure inside her, around her. She let out a noisy breath. ‘'Damn, it's hard to stay mad at you.''

Shannon frowned. ‘'You want me to go?''

‘‘Yes. No. I want you where you want to be.''

Shannon smiled. ‘'I wanted to be here.''

Their eyes met. Jenny grinned. ‘'So, You're going to introduce me to mom?''

Shannon blushed. ‘‘Not if you're going to throw books at her I'm not.''

‘'You'd protect me?''

‘'I would, would I?''

Jenny gave a smug look. ‘‘You promised.''

They both grinned, knowing another wall had fallen. It seemed strange to both of them that right there in the middle of everything, discovering what he was. The victims the death, the fear. They were doing this, teasing and laughing. Strange, that it didn't feel wrong or absurd, the feeling it created around them, was safety and warmth. But most of all it felt right.

Shannon's grin tapered off, turning to a nervous chuckle. She pointed to the den. ‘'I'm going to….'' She held up the cell. ‘'….Captain.''

Jenny nodded. Wondering if Shannon was ever going to stop running away, when her true feelings were being shown. Feelings now Jenny understood attraction and something more. She finally made herself move, stooping to pick up the papers from the coffee table, suddenly seeing bud watching her over the edge of it, his head tilted and tongue hanging out, his brown eyes dancing in amusement.

‘‘Oh shut up.'' She threw the papers at him.

He snorted, as the papers fell around his head like falling leaves. He barked, jumping up to catch them.

Jenny sat down on the sofa with a hmpft. Crossing her arms, chuckling at his antics, she felt the weight lift off her shoulders. She'd found him, knew what he did, and knew why the tooth fairy did it. So much made sense about the victims. They were ahead of him for once. She knew it would take time to track down every single medical person in the area. But For once they had something to get near him. Something he didn't know. She felt a part of herself mend, one that had been broken in D.C. the faith in herself restored. For the first time in two years, she felt whole again, well nearly whole.

Her head turned to the den, hearing Shannon's voice go up as she yelled into the phone. What was she going to do about Shannon? Her eyes closed. Now the case was nearly over, she knew as soon as he was caught, Shannon would leave. She was surprised to feel how much pain it caused.


She sat forward, burying her face in her hands, rubbing the tiredness away, pushing her hands back through her hair, before she dropped her arms. She didn't want Shannon to just disappear from her life, not now, not now she'd found her. What exactly had she found? Except the lost parts of need, want and sexual attraction. She didn't even fully know if Shannon even thought of her in that way, just confusing signals before Shannon buried them.

‘‘Double shit.''

What the hell was she supposed to do? It would serve her right, if Shannon were straight. She should have listened to Marcus. She groaned, imagining Marcus doing the told you so dance. She let out a long sigh, god, she could do with Marcus right now. He would just walk up to Shannon and ask her outright.

Jenny sat forward, her face turning serious, hearing Shannon's voice say goodbye in the other room. Suddenly she needed to know. She rose, moving towards the study.

Shannon looked over as she entered, seeing the serious face. ‘'What's wrong?''

‘‘Are you gay?''

Shannon's mouth fell open.

Jenny realized she spoken out loud. ‘‘Shit. I …. Shit. Look, forget I asked.'' She turned quickly hurrying back into the living room.

It took a moment for Shannon's brain to notice Jenny wasn't standing there anymore. ‘'hey.''

‘'stupid stupid stupid stupid.''


Jenny turned. ‘'I'm sorry, just forget I asked that.''


‘'I mean it's none of my busin……'' She stopped. ‘‘What did you say?''

‘'I said yes. I'm gay.''

‘‘Oh.'' Jenny's mouth snapped shut.

‘‘That's it? Oh.''

Jenny simply nodded.

Shannon was getting her pounding heart under control ‘‘Okay. Why did you ask?''

‘‘Um….'' Jenny shifted nervously.

Shannon waited, folding her arms, kinda liking the deep shade of red Jenny was going.

Jenny suddenly felt trapped, cold. No. Not now. Please not now. She shuddered. She managed to keep her voice steady. ‘‘If I just say I needed to really know. Will you leave it? If I promise to talk soon…. Please.''

Shannon was about say ‘'hell no'' when she saw it, the growing fear and panic. She didn't understand why the psychic was afraid. But she didn't like it. ‘'I'll leave it.''

Jenny exhaled. ‘‘Thank you.'' She turned, needing the isolation of the bedroom, she made herself stop and turn. ‘'I'm glad you're gay though.'' She gave a weak smile.

Shannon worry slightly faded. She returned the smile. ‘‘Me too.''

Knowing she was confusing Shannon, she called bud to her side and entered the room, only letting the trembling out, when the door was truly shut. Then mad at her reaction she slumped onto the bed, allowing the tears to fall. She'd thought she was over the fear, over what that basterd had done to her in D.C. she closed her eyes, welcoming bud as he jumped on the bed and lay across her. ‘'Damn you, Matthew Clark.'' She rolled over pulling bud with her. Trying to shut out the images that choose now, to ruin her feelings for Shannon. One's she had no control over.


Shannon once again found herself wondering what the hell had just happened. She hadn't expected Jenny to just blurt out the question, and neither had she expected the fear when she given her answer. Fear of her, now she knew she was gay? Shannon exhaled, moving to the den. It had been the main reason she hadn't mentioned it in the first place, or shown signs of her growing attraction for Jenny. She didn't want her to think she was a sexual threat. After reading what happened in D.C. she'd decided it was easier to just keep it out of conversation. She picked up one of the folders, then threw it down, her eyes shifting to the door. How the hell could she be blamed for the fear if Jenny was the one who wanted to know? Did Jenny feel threatened? Is that why she asked? Had she picked up on the attraction she'd tried so hard to hide? Damn it. Why the hell had Jenny brought this up now of all times.

Her swearing was interrupted as the phone rang in her hand, she opened it seeing the captains name come up. ‘‘Yea.''

‘‘Okay we have the search started for medical personal. Got a state wide alert on it too. We're checking into every god damn department which requires the Hippocratic Oath…. The F.B.I. are shitting bricks she's come up with this. Expect another visit, soon.''

‘'I thought as much.''

‘‘There's a way around it.''

‘‘How?'' she shifted suddenly uneasy.

‘‘Get her out of there. Bring her here with us, help find the basterd.''

Shannon inhaled sharply. ‘‘No.''

‘'Shannon. You know she needs to do this. We need her. She can sense him. You know as well as I do, the names on this list are going to be long. It's gonna take time to get warrant's, phone tapes, surveillance. She'd cut the time in half. I've seen her work. I know what she can do.''

‘‘No god damn way. I'm not putting her in danger. You can't ask her to expose herself like this.''

‘‘Where the hell is the danger? You'll be next to her twenty four seven. She'll have the whole department watching her ass. We can't find him before the next victim and you know it.''

Shannon stayed silent.

His voice steeled. ‘‘Put her on the phone.''

Shannon felt helpless. ‘‘Damn it Captain. She can't do this, she can't leave this island, she barely made it last time. You can't ask this of her.''

‘'I'm not asking. Put her on the goddamn phone. Or I'll come out there myself! That's an order!''


Jenny sat up. Bud lifted his head, his face turning to the door. Jenny could hear it too, Shannon shouting. But that wasn't what had pulled her from the beginning nightmare, it wasn't what had stopped the nightmare in its tracks. What had stopped it was fear, but not hers, Shannon's. She rose quickly throwing open the door, hearing Shannon's voice growing louder as she headed for the den.

‘'I don't care. You can have my badge! I'm not fucking putting her on the phone. I'll get her out of here before she does this.''

‘'Shannon?'' Jenny stood at the doorway, not sure of what to do. Shannon was afraid and the room buzzed with it.

Shannon cursed, swinging round.

‘‘Is that her? Damn it this is an order put her on the phone.''

Shannon clicked the cell shut. ‘'Thought you went to bed?''

Jenny looked at the closed phone, beginning to understand. Her eyes shifted to Shannon, seeing the anger boiling, but also seeing the fear in the blue eyes. ‘'What's wrong? Why are you yelling? Was that Grieves? Why did you hang up on him? Did something happen?''

‘‘It's nothing, go to bed.''

Jenny inhaled. ‘'I thought you wouldn't lie to me.''

Shannon stilled. ‘‘Please go back to bed.''

‘‘Tell me.''

The cell rang again.

Jenny held out her hand.

They both stared at each other.

Jenny took a step closer, her palm still out. Giving the command with her eyes, that she wanted the cell.

With a heavy sigh, Shannon handed it over. ‘‘Don't listen to him, just tell him no.''

Jenny got an uneasy feeling, but she needed to know why Shannon was so afraid. She took the cell clicking it open, holding it away from her ear at the abuse screamed. She put it back. ‘'Captain. It's Jenny.''

Grieves stopped, recovering. ‘‘Shit. I'm sorry.''

Jenny eyes followed Shannon as she paced the room. ‘'What's going on?''

‘'I need you here.''

Jenny blood froze, her eyes jumping to Shannon's now knowing the source of her fear. Fear for her. ‘'Wh…at?''

‘'I'm sorry. I said I wouldn't ask, but I have too. We've done a preliminary record search for the area Jenny, we have over five thousand names in the medical field. You know what it means, we won't catch him in time. I think, no, I know we will if you come here. You can help us. You know you can?''

‘'I've helped you already. I kept my side of the bargain. The rest is up to you and the F.B.I. you can't ask this.''

His voice was sorry. ‘'I can. I have too. I don't have a choice. Jenny, we'll give you full protection. You can keep Shannon and her team with you if that's who you want close. If I have to beg I will. I don't have pride when it comes to stopping this basterd from taking another innocent victim.‘'

Jenny mouth was dry. Her eyes found Shannon's sad ones watching her.

‘'I forgot how manipulative you could be Grieves.''

‘‘If you think that's what I'm doing, fine. But can you live with yourself if we don't catch him in time? Because I don't think you could. Not the Jenny I know.''

Her voice turned to ice. ‘‘You don't know me.''

He stopped, knowing he was losing her. ‘‘Maybe. I think I do though. Jenny I need your help. You could rule him out just by being around somewhere he works, or stays or lives. You know how much faster that would be. With your insight, your talent we can catch him.''

Jenny scoffed. ‘‘So you expect to just drive me around to addresses on your list.''

Shannon stiffened, trying hard not to rip the phone out of Jenny's hand and tell the captain to go to hell.

He chuckled nervously. ‘‘Something like that. If you tell me that wouldn't work, and I've misunderstood how your gift works, then fine I'll hang up now and won't bother you again.''

Jenny closed her eyes, knowing damn well it would work, if they were lucky enough to go somewhere he worked or stayed, or lived, there would be the essence.

He listened, only hearing breathing. ‘'Are you telling me it wouldn't work that way?''

She swallowed, wishing she could lie. ‘‘No. It would work.''

His exhaled in relief. ‘‘That's what I thought.''

‘‘But you weren't sure, were you?''

He laughed nervously. ‘‘No''

‘'I could have lied to you.''

She could hear his smile.

‘'I'm afraid I do know you enough not to lie.''

Jenny exhaled. ‘‘You know what you're asking. Don't you? What happen last time I left here?''

‘‘Yes. I do. I'm sorry.'' He meant it.

Now was the time, the test. To run or stay. She straightened, she was tired of running. Her eyes shifted to Shannon. ‘'I want Shannon with me at all times, Jane as well and Marcus.''

‘'Marcus? The guy who wanted to see the shrouds. You sure?''

‘‘Yes I'm sure. He has touch talents. I need them. His talent works differently to mine.''

‘‘Okay. Do you want me to contact him?''

‘‘No. We'll deal with it.''

‘‘Anything else you need?''

‘‘No. When will you have the full list ready.'' She couldn't believe she was doing this, again.

His voice grew serious. ‘‘By tomorrow morning. The F.B.I. are working on it their way. I've still got my own task force set up, and they are already going over your profile and fitting it with the list we have already of medical people. I have two teams set up, one to cover the ones near the profile, and one for covering the lesser ones. The ones that hit the profile I'll have ready for you.''

Jenny nodded then realized he couldn't see her. ‘'That sounds like a good plan to go with.'' She took a breath, steeling herself. ‘' We'll be there by ten am tomorrow.'' Her eyes saw Shannon's drop. ‘'…. And one more thing captain. If Shannon at any times thinks I'm in danger were leaving and she has the final say. I do what she says Captain. Not you.‘' She watched surprised eyes jump to her, but she also saw the anxiety lessen in blue eyes.

‘‘Agreed. Thank you… I know…. Jen''

Jenny hung up not letting him finish. She took in a lung full of air. ‘'Jesus I'm insane. What the hell did I just agree too.''

Shannon offered a sad smile. ‘‘You did exactly what I knew you'd do when he asked for your help…. You hate seeing people hurt, even if it means you do things you don't like, or ending up getting hurt.''

Jenny ran her hand through her hair, giving a nervous laugh. ‘‘Well I'm hoping you stop that from happening.''

Shannon moved closer, hesitant for a moment, before she reached out taking the psychics hand, feeling the slight jolt.

Jenny tensed.

‘‘Relax. I would never hurt you and I'm not going to let anything happen to you. Thank you for giving me this trust Jenny. ''

Jenny studied Shannon eyes seeing the truth. She relaxed, liking the feeling of warmth of the touch. She also saw felt the raging emotions under the surface between them, knowing where this could quickly lead again, she felt the coldness begin, she forced it back. She smiled. ‘'Does that line work a lot with girls you meet in bars detective.''

Shannon smiled, understanding, why Jenny changed the subject. She played along. ‘‘Wouldn't know.''

Jenny frowned. ‘‘Huh.''

‘'I've never used it before. I'm more a beer and u haul van kinda gal. I don't do bars and corny lines.''

Jenny smile filled her face. ‘‘How many exactly?''

‘‘Beers? Or women?''

Jenny realized Shannon's tone was serious, she took a breath for courage. ‘‘Women.''

Shannon's eyebrows rose. ‘'You really want to discuss this now?''

Jenny fought back the urge to say yes. Knowing damn well now wasn't the time. She shook her head, laughing nervously. Still well aware Shannon held her hand. ‘‘No. We have to get ready to leave.''

Shannon hid her disappointment, then giving Jenny's hand a squeeze she smiled. ‘'I'll take a rain check then?''

Jenny smiled. ‘‘Okay.''

Shannon hated to ask, but she had too. ‘'You sure about tomorrow?''

Jenny pulled her hand away, needing distance, it amazed her how quickly she could lose herself in Shannon. ‘‘Yes. I'll just need you and Jane to stay damn close. Will you arrange it with Marcus to meet us?''

Shannon could see Jenny was fighting to control her emotions. She was having the same problem, she wanted to lock the doors and not let her off the island. She was scared, scared of what would happen on the mainland. She forced it down, turning to what she knew, what she could do. ‘'I'll arrange everything fully. But, I don't want you going to the precinct.''

Jenny looked at her in question.

‘'I don't want anyone seeing your officially on the case, the place is crawling with press. The last thing we need is your face plastered over the evening news. If we're right we are for the first time ahead of him. I want to keep it that way. I'll send Jane in to get the information we need from the Captain. We won't be leaving on the ferry either.''

Jenny just stared at her. ‘‘Are we swimming?''

Shannon could actually feel Jenny relaxing, it took some of her anxiety away. She smiled. ‘‘No. I have a few options. I always have had, if I needed to get you off the island quickly.''

Jenny's eyebrow rose. ‘‘Even if I didn't want to go.''

Shannon folded her arms. ‘‘Yes.''

Jenny stared at her, seeing she was serious, she didn't know whether to be pissed off or not. ‘'Were you going to throw me over your shoulder?''

Shannon looked down.

‘‘Oh my god. You would have.'' Jenny couldn't help it she laughed. ‘'I'd have kicked the shit out of you and bud would have bitten your damn ass.''

Shannon finally looked up, grinning. ‘‘More than likely yes.''

Suddenly Jenny didn't feel so afraid. Shannon was going to take care of her no matter what. This wasn't D.C. Shannon was making sure no one knew where she was. Was making sure she was safe. Jenny shook her head, ‘‘All this because of the F.B.I. guy on the island watching. You don't want them to know. Do you?''

Shannon took a step closer, her voice totally serious now. ‘‘No. The only people that are going to know are Jane, Marcus and myself. People you trust.''

Jenny couldn't help it, even though she was scared beyond belief about leaving the island, the image of the F.B.I. scratching their heads at her sudden disappearance amused her, especially Ryter. ‘‘This is going to piss them off.''

Shannon 's grinned. ‘‘Oh I hope so.''

Jenny laughed, wagging a finger. ‘‘Bad girl.'' She walked away. She had to get herself ready, and not just the packing.

Shannon muttered under her breath. ‘‘You have no idea.''

Jenny paused in her step, not because of the words she barely heard, but the purred way, in which they were said, she forced herself to continue, looking over her shoulder. ‘‘Very bad girl.''

Shannon bit her lip, caught out.


Jenny couldn't really say she was surprised as she stepped out of the rubber dinghy and onto the yacht. She'd half expected a submarine to surface at dawn, when they'd left her house and followed the dunes to the far western beach and dingy waiting just before sunrise. She smiled up at Jane as she took her offered hand, helping her up the last of the three steps.

‘'Did you steal this?''

Jane laughed. ‘‘No! It's a friend's.''

Jenny smiled, looking back down into the dinghy, seeing Shannon arguing with Bud. She bit her lip, noticing Jane do the same as she looked down over the railing.

Shannon shifted to catch her balance as she grabbed bud again. ‘'Listen fleabag, either you let me carry you or you can go home via a long swim?''

Bud looked up at Jenny, whining. Then at Shannon, whining again.

Shannon shook her head. ‘'I have to carry you, only way up there. You're choice boy.''

He looked at Jenny again, then sighing, sat back down, waiting.

‘'Good choice.'' Shannon stooped, groaning slightly as she lifted him up, putting his front legs, one onto each shoulder. Locking her arm around him as she reached for the ladder run. ‘'Jesus. You need to cut down on the sugars.''

He growled, looking around nervously.

Shannon's voice gentled as she felt him tremble. ‘‘Hey, easy there. We'll be fine.''

His answer was to start licking her face, telling himself, peeing now was not a good idea.

‘‘Oh gross. Cut it out will ya.'' Shannon started to climb, while bud continued to give her a face wash. When she reached the deck she deposited Bud to the floor, rubbing her face with both hands with a grimace. She stood straight, bending her back to relieve the ache, she found two sets of amused eyes watching her. She put her hands on her hips. ‘'Got a problem?''

Jane coughed, turning to pick up the bags and carry them below.

Jenny however let her amusement out full force. ‘'Very cute.''

Shannon rolled her eyes. ‘‘You need to get below.''

Chuckling Jenny turned, calling Bud away from sniffing the whole deck. Both of them headed below.

Shannon looked around, checking the beach area. Making sure no one was watching or following she headed towards the wheelhouse to get them on their way.

Jenny wasn't sure what exactly was holding her together, but this time she felt different, not so panicked. Maybe it was the yacht? It was isolated no people. Shannon had told her to stay below for the whole two hour trip and she'd agreed, but now she wanted to be on deck, to be in the sunshine, she'd had enough of shadows. She'd always loved the sea, fishing trips or cruises around the bay had become a thing of the past after D.C. another thing she had to curse about it. She rose, moving to the bathroom, running cold water, splashing it over her face. She looked at her reflection again, she was beginning to recognize the woman in front of her again. This is who she used to be, free. Reaching down she pulled the small container from her pocket, opening it she took the first contact lenses out, tilting her head back, putting it in. blinking it into place. Then repeated the movement with the second. She stared at her reflection again. Blinking the slight watering away. It had been a long time since she'd worn these out in the world. Normally she preferred her sunglasses, it gave her a sense of privacy. The contacts protected her eyes from the sun, but they didn't hide the color of her eyes. For some reason she didn't want that today. Today she wanted to see the world in its whole. She grabbed the hand towel, drying her face as she felt Shannon near. She smiled at how easily she felt that now.

‘'Hey?'' Shannon looked around the door, searching the cabin.

‘‘In the bathroom. Just a minute.'' She smiled as she entered the room. ‘‘Hi.''

Shannon smiled back, closing the door behind her. ‘‘Hi. How you holding up?''

‘'I'm doing better than a thought.''

‘'Good. We'll be there in just over an hour.''

‘‘Did we get away okay?''

Shannon grinned. ‘‘Ahuh. The F.B.I. doesn't even know you left. They did their usual walk passed the house today. Richard and Nat make good decoys.''

Jenny shook her head. ‘'So what now?''

Shannon sat on the edge of the bunk. ‘'Marcus is meeting us with a car. Then we're going to his place if that's okay? If not we can go to a safe house.''

Jenny picked up her bag, pulling out a sweat top. ‘'I'm surprised you want to go to his place after what you said last time?''

Shannon looked away shrugging. ‘'I didn't know him then. I didn't trust him''

Jenny looked up. ‘‘And you do now?''

Shannon met her eyes. ‘‘Yes.''

Jenny slipped the sweat top over her head, pulling her hair free. ‘‘Good…. Then what?''

Shannon rose pulling the map from her back jean pocket, laying it out over the bed.

Jenny recognized it from the one in the den, seeing the red dots and zone area.

Shannon waited for Jenny to draw closer. ‘'I've had an idea. We're pretty sure he sees himself as the ecliptic right?''

Jenny nodded. Her eyes going to Shannon. ‘‘Yes.''

Shannon circled an area on the map with her finger. ‘‘That would be this area. I think we should concentrate there, with any names that come up in the medical search.''

Jenny's eyes fell to the map again.

‘'What do you think?''

Jenny nodded, sitting down. ‘'I think it's a good plan.''

Shannon noticed the change. ‘‘Scared.''

A half laugh came out. ‘‘Shitless.''

Shannon folded the map back up, sitting next to her. ‘'We can go back.''

Jenny closed her eyes. ‘‘No we can't.'' she sighed heavily, her hand going through her hair. ‘'I'm tired of running Shannon. Tired of hiding. But I'm so damn scared right now, I can't even think straight.''

Shannon laid her hand gently on Jenny's leg, noticing the flinch, but she didn't move it. ‘'Ask me again.''

Jenny's focus came off the warm hand, confused eyes going to Shannon. ‘'Ask you what?''


Translucent eyes widened. ‘‘Now?''

Shannon shrugged. ‘‘What better time, we've got an hour on our hands.''

Jenny laughed nervously. ‘'Jesus. Your timing sucks.''

‘‘Not really. I'll take your mind off things and answer some questions for you.''

Jenny felt her insides settle. ‘'Just for me?''

Shannon smiled shyly. ‘‘Well….''

Jenny shifted back across the bunk until her back rested against the wall. She missed Shannon's touch but right now it was too much. She crossed her legs at the ankles. ‘‘Okay. Women?'' she folded her arms as well, waiting.

Shannon now felt nervous.

‘'You started this.'' Shannon's discomfort made another part of Jenny relax. She let herself carry the feeling.

‘‘Yea I did didn't I.'' Shannon scratched the back of the neck. ‘‘Okay then, where to start?''

Jenny faked shock. ‘'Jesus is there that many. You have to think about it.''

Shannon's eyes shot up. ‘‘No!''

Jenny swallowed the urge to laugh.

Shannon sighed seeing the amusement dancing. ‘'I've lived with two. First lasted three years the other ten months. I've slept with three others in the course of five years; those didn't get to the moving in stage because they got fed up with me ahead of time in about two months. The last one apparently decided I wasn't enough and found someone else but didn't think telling me about it was necessary. That lasted exactly five weeks.'' She swallowed. ‘'There's been no one for quite a while. I told you I was hard to get on with.'' She smiled self consciously at giving so much away.

Jenny amusement disappeared, as she saw the pain and felt it. ‘‘They're idiots.''

Shannon grinned. ‘‘Think so huh?''

‘‘Yes. Obviously they didn't really know you.''

‘‘Is that right.''

Jenny rolled her eyes. ‘'I'm a psychic Shannon. I know.''

Shannon grinned, which faltered, she turned away.

Jenny watched confused, then her eyes widened. ‘'Shannon I didn't read you.''

Shannon laughed. ‘'I know that. But, I'm beginning to think your right, this isn't the best time. I have got lousy timing.''

Jenny sighed sadly, almost shaking her head. Shannon was running again. ‘'no problem.'' She pushed away from the wall, shuffling along the bed to rise.

Shannon caught her arm. ‘'Sorry.''

Jenny looked down at it, then met Shannon's eyes. ‘'Why do you run so much? I thought I was the one with the Nikes on standby.''

Shannon almost let go of her arm, instead she gave a weak smile. ‘'I'm not…. I'm not used to.'' She stopped, inhaling.

Jenny waited.

‘'I'm not used to sharing so much with someone who actually wants to know.''

Jenny relaxed back, shifting to face Shannon. Putting her hand over Shannon's. ‘'Well I want to know.'' She gave the hand a squeeze before moving back to her previous position.

Shannon exhaled. ‘‘Okay. Ask?''

Jenny chuckled. ‘'You look like I'm going to interrogate you. Relax will you. I want to know, but you don't have to tell me everything unless you're ready too. The same works for me. I want you to know things, but…. Some of it I'm not ready to talk about. Okay?''

Shannon relaxed, smiling. ‘‘Okay.'' Her smile changed.

Jenny slightly tensed seeing the changed. She eyed her warily. ‘‘Why do I suddenly want to say ut oh?''

Shannon grinned. ‘‘Turn abouts fair play.''

Jenny laughed, knowing what Shannon wanted. She took a breath answering the unspoken question. ‘'I'm afraid I have slept with a lot, mostly before I was twenty. They weren't relationships, I did do one night stands, both sexes. I'm not proud of those years. But I won't make excuses for them either. I worked out I was seeking affection from anyone who would offer it. They happened around the time my gift came out full force, I was finding it hard to erect walls to people's emotions, I got caught up in them, their want became my want, it was easy to confuse it with what I was feeling. I didn't know at the time that's what was happening and when I did I stopped. I stayed away from touch, sex.''

She waited to see Shannon's reaction. Seeing only curiosity, no disgust or judgment. She continued. She inhaled, pushing away the old feeling. Smiling, as she felt Shannon take her hand. She closed her eyes for a moment, just letting the touch go through her. ‘'For a long time I didn't go with anyone, there were a few in my late twenties, even fewer in my thirties. I got used to not needing, not wanting.'' She resisted the urge to say , ‘until now.' She felt the squeeze to her hand, she returned it.

‘'And…. Marcus?''

Jenny's eyes opened, hearing the hint of jealousy. She met Shannon's not so sure gaze. ‘‘He was the first person to show me love…. But I'm afraid he's a man.''

Shannon's eyebrows rose. ‘‘And you didn't notice this before?''

Jenny barked a laugh. ‘‘Oh I defiantly noticed it before. But,'' she sighed. ‘‘It's hard to explain. My body knows the difference between being touched by a man and woman. I always knew which I preferred, what I really wanted. But I was already so much of an outcast because of my gift. I wasn't ready to be ostracized for my choice of lover too. I knew I was gay, I think I've always known. It was never the same with a man, my body responded, but part of me never did…. I'd known Marcus for a long time and it just seemed right to be in a relationship with him, he gave me everything I'd ever craved, love, protection, security, understanding, he accepted my gift without question and helped me with it a lot. It was easy being with him. Sex wasn't a big part of the relationship. I craved, the attention, his need, his love, the feeling of being truly wanted. He gave it, so freely.'' She sighed heavily, looking away. ‘'I hurt him very badly. It wasn't like I said, I kid myself every time I explain it. We didn't just realize we'd be better as friends. I realized it.''

She faced Shannon again, giving a sad smile. ‘'No matter how much I gave to him, it wouldn't be enough or right, because I didn't feel as much as I should have with him. The sexual side, I began putting off more and more and when I realized the real reason why I was doing it, I knew things had to change. He was so loving, giving, accepted the limitation of sex and for a while I talked myself into believing it was enough.... ‘' She paused. ‘' I could bluff myself only so much, but it really wasn't enough for either of us and it was totally unfair to him.''

Shannon took a breath. ‘'What was reason?''

Jenny gave a wry smile. ‘'I think you can guess. I knew the first women who came along and touched me in love I'd break his heart, he wouldn't have stood a chance. So, I ended it, and as much as he agreed with it, I knew he didn't. I'm a lucky as hell he's still in my life and a friend, that is really all he is a friend and that's all he is ever going to be Shannon.''

Shannon understood and nodded, feeling the jealousy disappear. ‘'Has a woman touched you in love.''

Jenny smiled shyly. ‘‘Oh yea. But we didn't work. In the end….'' Her smile dropped. ‘‘She couldn't handle my gift…. She tried too, but it became a problem between us. She left after two years…. That was about four years ago, and well there's been no one since.'' She swallowed hard. Holding Shannon's hand tightly and her gaze. ‘'…. Not by choice anyway.''

Shannon inhaled sharply, feeling like someone had just gut punched her. It was one thing to suspect something, it was another to have it said so roughly in front of you. Shannon could see it all in the eyes that watched her, feel it in the shudder that passed between them. Her voice broke as she spoke. ‘‘Jen.''

‘‘Yes.'' Jenny felt the tremble, unsure if it was her or Shannon.

‘‘I really need to hug you right now. If that's okay.''

Just the fact she'd asked broke Jenny's hold on her emotions, hearing the anguish broke the need to run. ‘‘Please.'' Was all Jenny could manage as the sob tore from her throat.

Shannon pulled her quickly to her, engulfing the small woman against her. ‘'I won't let anything like that, happen ever again. I swear it.''

Jenny just held on, and for once she stayed, fighting the urge to run away, she held on tighter, letting the tears flow, believing the words repeated into her ear and inside another part of her healed.

‘'I promise.'' Shannon held her tighter, never before meaning something so much in her life.


Jane wasn't sure what had gone on below decks, but she'd watched both of them emerge looking like they'd been through hell and back. She kept her questions to herself.

They all departed the yacht via a launch, which came to pick them up just off the key's harbor. Neither of them spoke as they approached the landing area at the bottom of one of the better hotels. Shannon was on full alert, and so was Jane, they fell into step with Jenny as soon as she stepped from the boat. Both of them on either side like sentry guards. Just having them so near, wrapped Jenny in a safety blanket, which expelled the need to turn around and go back home.

Marcus glanced up, grinning. Folding the paper he was reading, throwing it in through the car window to the seat, he watched the three walk towards him up the track. ‘'Top of the morning to ya Jane. You're looking radiant as usual.'' He grinned, walking towards her.

She scowled, stopping in front of him, shifting the two duffel bags she had slug over her shoulder. ‘‘Keys.'' She held out her hand.

He laughed, digging into his jeans for them, depositing them over. ‘'Can I help you with those. Or you going to play butch girl today.''

His answer was duffel bag shoved into his chest, hard enough to make him step back with the force and expel air from his lungs with an ‘'Oof!'' Laughing he followed her to the trunk, depositing it into the back after she'd opened it, he only just managed in time to snap his arm back as it slammed shut. He grinned again, following her movements to the driver's seat. He turned. ‘‘Is she always such a happy bunny in the morning?''

Shannon smiled. ‘'She hasn't had her coffee. Hello Marcus….'' She held out her hand. ‘'…. Good to see you again.''

Marcus blinked looking down at her offered hand, looking up he caught Jenny's amused gaze looking at him over Shannon's shoulder. He took Shannon's hand. ‘'Glad to um…. See you too.''

Shannon shook his hand, then opened the back door, waiting for Jenny to get in. her attention now back on the area, scanning.

Jenny by passed her and pulled Marcus into a hug. ‘‘Hello you. I'm glad you're safe.''

He returned the hug. ‘‘How you doing?''

She drew her face back, seeing the worry in his eyes. ‘'I'm ok.''

He gave her a not so sure look.

She smiled. ‘‘Honestly. I am.''

He pulled her back into the hug. ‘‘Yea I think you are. It's good to see your eyes again…. I hate those damn glasses of yours.''

Shannon attention snapped over to them in surprise, she hadn't noticed Jenny wasn't wearing her glasses or occurred to her why she wasn't. She'd gotten so used to seeing her eyes in the beach house, it felt normal to see them outside. She chuckled, now knowing why Jane had stared so much on the launch back.

Marcus whispered into Jenny's ear. ‘' Tall dark and deadly is tapping her foot. Impatient little thing isn't she.''

Jenny snorted, pulling away, giving Shannon a smile before she got in the back, calling bud to her. He immediately left the tree and ran jumping at Marcus briefly for attention. At the second call from Jenny he jumped in car.

Shannon looked at Marcus. ‘‘Did you get what we needed?''

‘‘It's at my house.''

Shannon nodded, leaving the door open for him. She moved around to the passenger side, getting in.

Once again he found himself caught in surprise, this time at being allowed to sit next to Jenny. Shannon's voice made him jump.

‘‘Are you coming?''

He quickly got in the back with Jenny, slamming the door shut, turning to her to find an amused look. He looked to Shannon, then Jenny again. His voice low. ‘‘Is there something I should know?''

Jenny blushed.

His eyebrow rose. ‘‘Oh goody. So she is a team player?''

She shot him a warning look.

Chuckling he settled back, ruffling bud's fur as he sprawled on his lap.

‘'Ready boss?''

Shannon clicked her seatbelt into place, ignoring what she'd heard from behind. ‘‘Let's go.''

Jane started the car and headed for their next stop.




They were waiting now for Jane to return. They'd park two blocks from the precinct. Shannon glanced around, making sure no one was taking any notice of their park car, she knew she was being over cautious, no one knew where the hell they were, but still she had that feeling in her gut, she had to be on full alert. Besides, she hated being so exposed and in one place for this long.

Marcus fingers were drumming on his leg, he was beyond bored, turning his head he took a glance at Jenny. She was totally still, her eyes staring out into the street, but he got the feeling she was seeing nothing, he knew she was somewhere inside herself, trying to keep things together. He heard another grunt from Shannon, his amused eyes went to her, at the fact she looked like a caged animal. ‘'Well. I'm going to get some coffee and Danish. That alright with you?''

Shannon twisted in the seat. ‘'Don't be long.''

‘'No worries.'' With a squeeze to Jenny's leg, he opened the door, slamming it shut as he left.

Shannon twisted further around, undoing her seat belt so she could look around her seat to Jenny. ‘‘Hey.''

Jenny turned from the window. She gave a small smile. ‘‘Just sitting here is driving you nuts isn't it?''

Shannon gave a busted look. ‘‘Shows that much huh?''

‘‘You fidget worse than bud does.'' Jenny turned her attention to him, smoothing his ears down.

Shannon studied her. ‘‘How you doing?''

Jenny bit back the irritation she felt at hearing that for the hundredth time. ‘'Well I haven't gone running for the hills or started screaming yet. So I'd take that as a good thing.''

Shannon however heard the sarcasm. ‘'Getting tired of the question then?''

Jenny eyes jumped to her, her eyes narrowing. ‘'Are you reading me?''

Shannon face showed her shock. ‘'What?''

Jenny stilled. ‘'Sorry.''

‘‘You know I can't. Why say that?''

‘‘Because I'm going stir crazy in here. How much longer?'' She looked back into the street, fully aware what she very nearly done.

Seeing she wasn't going to get an answer, Shannon shifted back to face forward, annoyed at hell as what she'd just been accused of. ‘‘Another ten minutes at least.''

Nothing else was said for five minutes. Then both looked across as the back passenger door opened.

Marcus ducked to get in, pushing bud back, he offered over the tray of coffees for Jenny to take. She did. He got in, holding the anish box well away from bud. He sat, then stilled, feeling the change in atmosphere. He looked to Jenny in question. She took her coffee, shaking her head, her eyes warning him not to ask, she shoved the coffees back into his hand.

He frowned, looking to Shannon seeing the stiffness, wondering what could have happened in less than ten minutes between them this time. He sighed, pushing bud away from exploring the box of Danish. He knew if he asked her wouldn't get an answer from either of them. He offered Shannon her coffee. ‘'Here.''

Shannon reached back taking it, lifting Jane's free as well, placing hers on the cup holder by the wheel. ‘'Thanks.''



‘‘No thank you.''

His frown deepened. ‘‘Okay then, I'll save them for later. '' He slipped one to bud. Who immediately wolfed it done, licking his lips, waiting for another.

‘‘She's back.'' Shannon shifted forward, her eyes following Jane as she crossed the street, heading back towards them. She looked relaxed, which made Shannon take her hand away from her gun.

Jane opened the door, getting in. ‘'Jesus. It's a circus down there. This is the list, there's over four hundred names on it. The task force has over three thousand. That one is in or near the area you told him about.''

Shannon took it, opening it up to read, scanning the addresses.

Jane spotted the coffee. ‘‘Oh god. I need this.'' She took a sip, almost groaning. ‘'Thank you boss.''

Shannon didn't look up. ‘'Wasn't me.''

‘‘You're welcome.''

Jane turned her head to Marcus, smiling. ‘'Thanks.''

Marcus gave a nod. He was too worried about Jenny to tease Jane.

‘‘How was Grieves?'' Shannon folded the list, pushing it into her jacket inside pocket.

Jane's attention went back to her. ‘‘Harassed. The F.B.I. isn't happy. They went to the island an hour ago.''

Shannon looked up, cursing. ‘‘Damn. I thought we'd have more time. What did the captain tell them?''

Jane wasn't sure, but she could swear she felt ice inside the car. ‘‘That she's helping with the case and left the island with his authority. But, he has no idea where she is.''

Shannon grimaced. She looked at Jane sharply. ‘‘You weren't followed?''

Jane looked insulted. ‘‘You know better than that.''

Shannon gave an apologetic look.

‘'So where to now? Can we still go to Marcus's?''

‘‘Yes. They don't know of his involvement and the captain isn't going to give out the information.''

Jane drank the last of her coffee. Putting it back in the holder she started the car, checking, before pulling it out onto the road.

Marcus had sat quietly through the whole exchange, his attention was on Jenny, seeing the tightening and untightening of her hand on her leg, he reached across taking it. Ignoring the annoyed glance she gave.

Jenny exhaled, trying to push back the need to run. Something was wrong she could feel it around her. She'd stretched out her senses only to be hit full force by hurt, pain, blood and lots of it. With a small gasp at the assault she quickly retreated her senses.

Marcus felt it all through their touch, he looked at Jenny, following her gaze until he too looked at the source of it, Shannon.

Jenny shuddered, looking to Marcus with silent anguished eyes.

He understood, whatever was going to happen, was going to happen to Shannon and soon. He grabbed Jenny's hand tighter, shifting closer, giving her his best reassurance look. Her hand gripped his, till he winced.

Shannon had seen the whole exchange reflected in the side window. She hadn't moved it to spy, she needed it to keep Jenny in her line of sight. Offering Marcus the seat next to her had been a gesture of trust. But it had one flaw, Jenny wasn't in her view. So she'd moved the side mirror while getting into the car. Gritting her teeth, she took a long gulp of coffee, watching Marcus stroke the back of Jenny's hand. She made herself look away, knowing what she was feeling was jealousy, and she didn't much like it.


Marcus opened his front door, throwing the keys onto the stand by the door. ‘‘Home sweet home.''

Shannon let Jenny enter first, noticing how pale she was, she followed her with her eyes as she headed towards the back the house. Glad when bud, quickly barked and chased after her.

Marcus watched, seeing the worry lines appear on Shannon's brow. ‘'The kitchens back there, one door leading to the back yard. She'll be safe.''

Shannon looked at him sharply, wondering if he read her. He didn't drop his stare, she gave a curt nod before turning to look in the doorway next to them, it looked like the living room.

Marcus smiled. ‘'Go do what you need to do. I'll be in the kitchen with Jenny. Will Jane come in?''

Shannon looked into the next room, seeing the computer in the corner. ‘'She'll be in after she's checked around outside.''

Marcus chuckled, getting an image of Jane checking out his trashcan. ‘‘Enjoy looking the place over.''

Shannon didn't reply, she was already working out exits and possible weak spots as she moved into the living room. Not a bad place, she thought, the main window was a weakness if someone wanted to take a pot shot at any of them, but it was also a way out if they were trapped. Her eyes took in the furniture, nether liking it or disliking it, it looked like a typical guy pad. She turned, stopping dead, the large canvas on the wall shocking her to stillness. She exhaled, taking in the form of the woman only slightly covered in a sheet, the pose was a relaxed one, the model's face was turned, looking over her exposed back to the artist. Shannon's teeth clenched so tightly her jaw muscle popped as she recognized the gleaming eyes, Jenny.

She found herself staring, taking in the expanse of flesh on offer, seeing the well-defined muscles of the back, just catching the curve of a breast. Shannon sucked in a breath, her eyes following the outline of a waist down to the lifted contour of a hip, where it met the black sheet, which was masking the lower tantalizing areas into shadow. Her head snapped back, realizing what she was doing. She cursed, moving out of the room. ‘‘Yea right, just a friend. Maybe she should let him know that.''

Jenny drank down the glass of water, holding the glass against her forehead, to take in the coolness.


She didn't turn, just filled the glass again.

‘'G.I Jane is checking the place over and her second in command is out searching my bushes.'' He pulled open the chiller, grabbing a soda.

Jenny nodded, looking out the window across the back yard. It hadn't changed much since she'd lived there. In fact very little of what she'd seen so far had. That brought a small frown, which was replaced as memories of her time there reawakened, she'd been happy, safe, the time with Marcus had been a freeing time, one which had found her a sense of balance between who she was and her gift. It felt strange being back. The last time, was to collect her things, her smile fell. She inhaled, feeling Marcus draw closer, she pushed away all those old feelings, she didn't need any more confusion right now.

‘'Dark thoughts?''

She shook her thoughts clear. The past was the past. She turned her head, smiling to him. ‘‘No. Good ones.'' She emptied the water, washing the glass out, placing it on the side, before turning. ‘‘You haven't changed much here.''

His right hand pushed to his back pocket, shrugging as he sipped his soda, suddenly feeling nervous. ‘‘Didn't seem a reason too. I like it the way it is here. I did most of the remodeling at the apartment, now that you wouldn't recognize.''

Jenny studied him, shaking the feeling she was missing something, she smiled, motioning to the yard. ‘'The apple tree has gotten big.''

He silently exhaled. ‘‘Yea. Have a good crop now. Not that I do anything with them. I never could cook apple pie as well as you.''

She shifted her eyes to him briefly, looking back into the yard as he turned his face to her.

‘'The kids in the street get the most out of it.'' He watched her for a moment. ‘'You want to talk about what we felt in the car?''

She stiffened. ‘‘You wouldn't have felt it if you hadn't used your touch.''

‘‘Jen. Wasn't like I had time to block it. I didn't know you were going to open up right there and then.''

She moved away from him, choosing the stool to sit. ‘‘What's to talk about? You saw it and you know I can't change it.'' She swallowed hard.

He exhaled, slightly annoyed. ‘'So we ignore it then. Great, back to normal.''

Her eyes snapped to him. ‘'What's that supposed to mean?''

He shook his head. ‘'I don't want to have an argument with you.''

‘‘And this will be?''

‘‘Yes. Because we always argue about this.''

‘‘That I don't try and change what I see?'' her voice was sarcastic.

His eyes filled with sadness. ‘‘Yes.''

She scoffed. ‘‘Like I have a choice. I see, exactly what has happened, is happening and what is going to happen. Why haven't you ever understood I don't have a say in it. I see it! That's it!''

‘‘How do you know until you try?''

Jenny's face turned to ice, she rose slowly. ‘'I did try in D.C. and we know how that turned out don't we.''

His mouth fell open, realization dawning. ‘'Oh Christ. He never got to you. You went to stop him. You left the hotel that night… left the protection detail.''

She stood stock still, her eyes glass. ‘'Yes and it only full filled the damn vision.''

He swallowed the lump in his throat. ‘'You knew he'd get to you….''

‘'Yes. So you see I can't change anything, because no matter what I do it always leads to the same end scene!''

His eyes dropped. ‘'I'm sorry.''

Slowly she came back into herself. ‘'So am I. Can we drop this now?''

He nodded slowly, looking down to the bottle in his hand.

Shannon walked into the kitchen, feeling the ice in the air, she looked to Jenny in question, who simply turned away. Shannon 's eyes moved to Marcus seeing his gaze drop. Great, just great. Back to the secret seven club. Her irritation went up a notch. She turned moving back towards the hall. ‘'I'm setting up in the back room, Jane's taking the front den. Oh and Nice painting.'' Her voice didn't hide her annoyance well.

Marcus looked over to her confused, seeing the burning in her eyes, then he got what she was talking about. His widened eyes jumping to Jenny.

Jenny was caught by the panic in his eyes, she turned giving Shannon a questioning look.

Shannon shrugged. ‘'Ask Van gogh here.''

Jenny watched her stomp from the room, now perplexed, she looked to Marcus seeing his slightly embarrassed look. ‘'What she talking about? What pai….'' Her words stopped. She took in a deep breath. ‘'Please tell me it's not still hanging in there?''

‘'I like it.'' He wondered if that sounded as lame, as he thought.

Jenny closed her eyes, when they opened they shone her anger. ‘‘For fuck sake, you knew we were coming here you could have at least taken it down until we'd left.'' She pushed past him, going into the living room. Only to find Jane, looking at the picture and tilting her head.

Jenny briefly closed her eyes in embarrassment. ‘'I was dating him at the time, that's my only defense.''

Jane jumped, blushing. ‘‘He….'' She cleared her throat. ‘‘He painted this?''

Jenny stepped closer, finally looking at it and feeling her blush deepen. She laughed nervously at Jane's surprised look. ‘‘Yes. He did.''

Jane's eyes went back to it again. Now she'd gotten over the embarrassment of getting caught, she decided she liked it. It did however make her uneasy, as the subject was Jenny, especially with the amount of flesh on offer. But the more she looked at it she realized, it wasn't a horny boyfriends painted porn picture, it was different much different, it was art. He'd captured the psychic perfectly. The lush red painted background allowed Jenny's white skin and blonde hair to stand out even more from the canvas. Her eye's shifted to the Jenny standing next to her before they returned the painted image, she could see the difference in the picture to the woman standing beside her. None of what was on the canvas showed the trails of what Jenny had been through in the last two years. The image's lines were soft, free, unflawed. It suddenly made Jane sad, that the psychic wasn't like that anymore. But the one thing that hadn't changed, were the eyes, the green of them glowed. ‘‘It's beautiful…. He's very good.'' She shook her head slightly annoyed. ‘‘How can he paint something as beautiful as this and be such an asshole at the same time?''

Jenny looked to her quickly. ‘‘He isn't.''

Jane gave her a not so sure look. ‘‘Yea.'' She moved back to the doorway. ‘'Only an asshole would leave that thing up there, knowing the boss was gonna see it.''

Jenny inhaled sharply. ‘'He wouldn't do that.'' Would he?

Jane shook her head, very amused. ‘'You may be a voodoo woman, but you know jack shit about men. He's marking his territory.'' Laughing, she headed upstairs to find her boss.

Jenny stood shocked, then turning to the picture she exhaled. ‘'Damn it.''

‘'Do you want me to take it down.''

Jenny had to take a moment to calm her anger. ‘‘No. It's your house, and it wouldn't matter.'' She turned to him. ‘‘Please tell me you didn't leave it there deliberately for Shannon to see?''

He looked away, slightly confused. ‘'I don't think I did.'' He returned his gaze to her. ‘'I don't know.''

Jenny sighed. ‘'Marcus.'' She suddenly felt very drained. ‘'I don't need this right now.''

‘'I know. I'm sorry.''

And he was she could hear it. ‘'Can I have a hug?''

He didn't wait, he moved quickly taking her in his arms. ‘'Jane doesn't like me very much right now does she?''

‘'She thinks you're an asshole.''


Jenny drew away. ‘'Take it down please.''

He nodded, watching her move towards the door. ‘'I'll apologize to Shannon .''

Jenny half smiled. ‘'For what? Seeing me naked, sleeping with me or doing a painting that proves that you did?''

He dropped his gaze. He felt suddenly like a shit. ‘‘If I'd known you two were….''

She had to bite back her instant snap. ‘‘We're not and will you stop assuming we are. It's getting annoying as hell.''

He shook his head. ‘‘You may not have done anything yet.'' His eyes came up, serious now. ‘‘But you two have something and if I'd known, I would have taken it down.''

She studied him, suddenly seeing the sadness, understanding now why he hadn't changed anything in the house, why he'd left the painting up. Oh Marcus you haven't let me go. She took a long breath, her voice gentle.

‘'I know you would have and for your information, I don't know what we have and I suspect neither does Shannon . So please, don't tease her or mention anything, I have a hard enough time with her now running away from me.''

His eyes jumped. ‘'She runs?''

Jenny rolled her eyes. ‘‘Yes, surprisingly enough, I'm not doing the running. Now will you leave it. Please. ''

He grinned. ‘‘Yes.''

‘'Thank you.'' She turned leaving.

‘‘For now.'' He smirked.

She shook her head, ignoring him, heading upstairs to mend whatever damage had been done this time with Shannon . All she knew was as she climbed the stairs, she would have hated to walk into one of Shannon 's ex's house and found a picture of her like that. Reaching the landing she made her way to the large bedroom at the back, pausing at the door for a moment, taking a breath before she entered, her eyes taking in the room, shock registered as her eyes fell to the bed and the array of weapons.

Jane looked up from the gun she was cleaning, smiling. ‘‘Hi.''

Shannon didn't turn around, she concentrated on the body mike she was working on.

Jenny's eyes shifted to Shannon's back seeing the tension, she turned her attention to Jane. ‘‘Hi. Did I miss a meeting?'' her eyes fell to the bed, slightly worried at the amount of firepower she saw there.

Jane saw it. ‘'Don't worry about those. It's standard surveillance stuff, with a tactical S.W.A.T pack thrown in. We're on our own remember, we just need to know we're covered, if we can't get help in time.'' She slide the magazine into her gun, sliding a bullet into the Chamber, putting it back into her the holster under her arm as she rose. ‘'I'm going to take along look around the area. Boss?''

Shannon nodded, still not turning. ‘‘Be back in an hour, I want to go over this list with all of us.''

‘‘No worries.'' Jane smiled as she approached Jenny. ‘‘Mind if I take the fur ball with me. Makes better cover if it looks like I'm walking a dog.''

Her eyes now were settled on Shannon. ‘'Sure go ahead. He'd love it. He's been cooped up all day.''

‘'Great. See you both later.'' She placed her hand on Jenny's arm, unaware of the flinch. Waiting until Jenny's eyes met hers. Smiling, Jane motioned to Shannon with her eyes, then gave Jenny's arm a brief squeeze for support.

Jenny nodded, answering the smile.

Jane grinned and left.

Jenny leant against the doorframe, slightly opening her senses, she felt the jealousy, then realizing what she was doing, she slammed the wall back into the place.

Shannon looked down feeling the hairs on her arms begin to rise, then it vanished. She twisted her head until she was looking over her shoulder to Jenny knowing what had just happened. Meeting the guilty gaze.

Jenny looked down. ‘‘Sorry.''

‘‘You could have just asked.'' Shannon rose, throwing the mike down onto the bed.

‘'I didn't know I'd done it till I had. I stopped. I'm sorry.'' She tried hard to figure out why the hell she'd just done that, broken one of her own rules.

Shannon jaw muscle pulsed. Then she sighed. ‘‘The painting pissed me off.''

Jenny looked up surprised Shannon was talking about it.

‘‘It was like he was rubbing it in my face, the fact he'd…. ‘' Her words tapered off, thinking how stupid it sounded out loud. ‘‘He could have taken it down, he knew we were coming here.''

‘'He's doing it now.'' Jenny didn't know what to say. Should she apologize for sleeping with Marcus? That was absurd it was the past. There was no reason to feel guilty about it, but for moment she actually did. She stayed silent, shifting uncomfortably.

Shannon sat down on the edge of the bed, shaking her head. ‘'I don't know what the hell is going on with me anymore.''

Something in the voice made Jenny want to hold her. Instead she settled for being near her, she moved, taking the space next to Shannon on the bed's edge. ‘'Should I apologize?''

Shannon looked sideways at her. ‘'For what?''

Jenny laughed, nervously. ‘'I'm not really sure. Sleeping with him? Sitting for the painting? Not checking it wasn't still hanging there?''

Shannon looked at her hands. ‘'No….'' she sighed heavily. Her thoughts were spoken before she could stop them. ‘'Why did you sit for it?''

Jenny shrugged. ‘‘He asked. He's an artist. To be asked to sit for him was such an honor for me. I love his work. He rarely paints.''

Shannon simply nodded, for some reason it still bothered her, what she couldn't work out was why exactly. Because of the level of trust it would take in their relationship? Because she'd slept with him? Or just because it felt like he was rubbing her nose in it? Maybe it was because she thought she was getting to know this woman, thought she'd never expose herself to something like that? If that was true, she didn't know Jenny at all. That thought unsettled her more. How could she know her? She'd known her less than two weeks.

‘'What are you thinking?''

Shannon half laughed. ‘‘Damn if I know.''

Jenny smiled. ‘‘It's getting complicated isn't it?''

Shannon slowly looked over, meeting her eyes, seeing the fear there and something else, the seriousness. ‘'Yea.''

Feeling the intenseness of their gaze, Jenny broke it lying back onto the bed, resting on her elbows. ‘'I'm not sorry I did the sitting Shannon. I was with him and I wouldn't change that for the world. You know my reasons, and the reasons for leaving him. Those haven't changed.'' She met Shannon's eyes again. ‘‘But I'm sorry you had to find out about it and see it like that. If I'm honest I'd totally forgotten he hung it there.''

Shannon swallowed, needing to know something. ‘‘Why didn't he take it down?''

Jenny's eyes fell briefly, before meeting Shannon's again. ‘'Because he's still in love with me.'' Jenny saw Shannon's eyes spark, realizing she'd already figured it out. Jenny let out a long sigh, feeling like an idiot, that she hadn't seen it before now. ‘'I didn't know until I came here. As Jane said, I may be a voodoo women, but I know jack shit about men.''

That made Shannon smile. ‘‘She said that?''

‘‘Yep.'' Jenny's smile dropped. ‘'Seems she was right.'' She exhaled, flopping full back onto the mattress, then winced. ‘'Shit. What the hell am I lying on?''

Shannon reached under her pulling out the armor vest. ‘‘Protection.''

Jenny shifted onto her side, allowing Shannon to pull it free. ‘'For?''


Jenny eyed it in surprise. ‘‘Is someone going to be shooting at me?''

Shannon tossed it over onto the chair in the corner. ‘'I hope not. But you're wearing it just in case.'' Shannon stilled as she felt the hand on her arm.

‘'Are we okay?''

Shannon nodded, unable to meet the eyes she knew were looking at her.

‘'You're sure?''

He voice was tentative and unsure. Finally Shannon had to look, and was instantly caught. ‘' Yea we're okay. But, I can't keep doing this.'' She watched the open gaze close and the hand start to retreat she caught it. ‘'no I don't mean it like that. Please understand I have to focus right now, and everything about you throws me for six. I don't know what is going on half the time. I can't be like that. Not now, not around this killer. I need to be focused to protect you, to get him.''

‘'I do understand. It's not just you Shannon. I'm either scared half to death around you or trying not to get on the damn boat home and lock my doors to keep you away.''

Shannon swallowed hard, that hurt.

‘'…. And the other time I'm wondering what it would be like to kiss you.''

Shannon's eyes snapped up.

Jenny gave a crooked grin, hiding the fact her insides were going nuts admitting it. ‘‘Surprised the hell out of me too. Believe me.''

Shannon told herself to remember how to breathe and again to remember the speech she'd just made. Nothing seemed to listen as her own thoughts locked on to the kissing. Her eyes dropped to Jenny's lips.

Jenny watched Shannon's eyes darken, it made her whole skin buzz. Christ!

She cleared her throat well aware of the warmth spreading, she rose, breaking contact. ‘'….You're right. We just need to focus.'' She made damn sure not to look at Shannon right now.

Shannon blinked, clearing her own throat. ‘'Right.''

Jenny finally turned, smiling at the look directed at her. ‘'Right''

Shannon's lips twitched as she saw Jenny's eyes drop to her lips. ‘'Stop it.''

Translucent eyes jumped up. ‘'I'm….''

Shannon smirked, rising an eyebrow. ‘'Right.''

Jenny bit her lip, feeling the small bubble of glee break forth from the darkness. It felt good to want again, to crave some ones touch and as much as it scared her to death, she still wanted it. She raised an eyebrow of her own. ‘'I didn't start it.''

Shannon snorted, enjoying the feeling too. ‘'Oh yes you did.''

Now knowing Jenny wanted to kiss her was sending her hidden desires into a tailspin. She shook her head. ‘'and you called me the bad girl.''

Their eyes locked, sharing the amusement, enjoying the feeling of attraction. Shannon grinned as she watched Jenny blush.

They both jumped, turning their heads as Marcus entered.

He looked at both of them wondering why they had silly grins on their face.

‘‘Um…. Lunch is ready.'' His eyebrows rose as both of them burst into laughter. ‘'Something funny?''

Jenny shook her head, calming her laughter, knowing how nuts they must both look right now. ‘‘Just life Marcus.''

He frowned. ‘'Ah!''

Shannon rose, moving towards him.

He tensed.

‘'Thanks for getting the stuff we needed from Grieves. It helped a lot.''

‘‘Wasn't hard, kinda like the undercover stuff. Shannon about the....''

She raised a hand. ‘'Don't worry about it.'' She looked back at Jenny giving her a smile, before looking at Marcus again. ‘‘You're an amazing artist.'' She gave him a genuine smile, before moving past him to the hall.

He scratched the back of his head, watching her go down the stairs. ‘'She confuses the hell out of me.''

‘‘Me too.''

He felt Jenny take him in a hug, surprised to feel her trembling. He looked down at her, seeing the small smile on her face, as her eyes followed Shannon down the stairs. It hurt, because he knew that look, but a part of him was glad for his friend, that finally someone had come along to help her out of her self-imposed exile. He wrapped his arms around her, tighter.

‘'It's love isn't it?'' his voice was low, he was having a hard time, hiding his emotions.

Jenny's eyes closed, still hearing the hurt. She gave him a squeeze. ‘'I don't know…. ‘' She looked up to his face. ‘'…. I'm sorry.''

He sighed. ‘'Nothing to be sorry about.'' He brushed her fringe back from her eyes, allowing his fingers to trace over her face briefly before dropping his hand. ‘‘If you'd met her when we were together I wouldn't have stood a chance.''

Jenny drew back with a gasp, almost hearing her own words repeated, her eyes filled with pain. ‘'Oh Marcus.''

He smiled to take the edge off his words. ‘‘You really think I didn't know Jen? Come on give me some credit. I knew why you were with me and it was enough okay. I also knew one day it wouldn't be enough for you. I just kidded myself.''

Her eyes filled with regret. ‘'I'm so sorry.''

He shhhed her pulling her back into a hug. ‘'I mean it don't be. I just held onto a hope that wasn't real. My problem not yours. Besides I love being your friend and having you in my life. I have missed you.''

She squeezed him harder.

He chuckled. ‘'Tall dark and deadly is a good choice. She's never gonna let anything happen to you.'' He pushed gently away from him, needing to see her eyes. He smiled sadly, wiping the tears off her cheek with his thumb. ‘'Jen…. I'm always gonna love you, I can't help it. But I understand the difference.'' He bent his head placing a brief kiss on her lips, well aware this was going to be the last time he could ever be like this with her. ‘'We'll survive jen.''

She inhaled sharply, feeling the lips touch but just as briefly they were gone, she blinked at him, not sure how she felt he'd done that. Then she saw in his eyes, it was a kiss of goodbye, not of their friendship, but a goodbye on his past with her, he was letting go of his hope of ever getting her back.

She smiled, stroking his face. ‘'I never would have survived without you. I can't lose you from my life again. I'm so sorry I pushed you away and hid. I love you.''

His grin stretched, understanding the difference in the words. ‘'I love you too and I'm not going anywhere shortcake.''

She grabbed him furiously, laughing at the use of her long forgotten nickname from him. ‘'You tell her that and I'll set Bud on you.''

He laughed, returning the hug. ‘‘You know if she came back right now, she'd shoot me. I don't think she gonna be the sharing type.''

Jenny shook her head, laughing. Already reaching the same conclusion, and that was fine with her, she didn't either. She hugged him closer, knowing this was his defense, knowing he was making her laugh to distance himself. Using his humor to protect himself. ‘‘She wouldn't shoot you.''

He drew back, looking down at her. ‘‘No?''

Jenny wiped at her eyes. ‘‘No. She'd wait till you were somewhere secluded. She's a cop Marcus she'd know where to dump the bodies so they wouldn't be missed.''

He laughed a full belly laugh pulling her to him again. ‘‘Ahhhh shit.''

Jenny held onto him, knowing one part of her past was now closed. Her eyes went to the empty stairwell, knowing her future lay tied to the woman who knew where to dump the bodies. She was terrified of the feeling reawakening inside her. Knowing she couldn't stop it if she tried, realizing a growing part of her didn't want it to. She chuckled, god this was so insane. She felt the shiver go through her, remembering what she'd seen in the vision. Her hug tightened around Marcus.

He felt it, answering her need for comfort. Knowing where her thoughts had turned. ‘'We'll take care of her Jen. I promise.''


All five now sat in the living room, relaxed after lunch. But there was seriousness in the room, all of them now well aware of what was going to happen. Even the fifth one knew, as he lay, chin on his paws, his eyes going to each of them in random turn.

Shannon rose first, her eyes briefly going to the now ominous large space on the wall, for a moment she wondered where he had put the painting. Her thoughts were stilled as she felt Jenny watching her curiously. She focused her thoughts. ‘'We have four hundred addresses. Jane and I went through them and compared each to just Jenny's profile. We're leaving out the F.B.Is profiles for now. We ruled out anyone below a senior level in medicine, we both agree that our guy isn't going to be just a nurse or orderly….'' She looked to Jenny, who nodded in agreement. ‘' Now the list is down to two hundred and fifty. Which gives us a starting point.''

Jenny shifted forward. ‘'Why rule out the F.B.I? They have good profilers.''

‘'They do. But they don't know him. They're going on standard psychopath behavior and as we all know now, he isn't a standard psychopath. We trust your new profile. If we're wrong we don't lose anything, the F.B.I. will be checking out the others anyway. They have the man power, we don't….''

Jenny understood, even though she felt the new added pressure.

Shannon continued. ‘‘…. So, I want to start with the fifty nearest the ecliptic. It's the most prominent positions. ‘' She opened the large street map out Jane had gotten for her, laying it across the coffee table.

All their attention went to it, seeing the large red circle Shannon had drawn.

Jane moved her fingers over the circle. ‘‘It gives us an eighty mile radius.''

Marcus whistled. ‘'That's a lot of streets to cover.''

Shannon nodded. ‘‘Some of the addresses aren't home residence. At least Twenty per cent of them are work places. I want to start with the houses first.''

Marcus frowned. ‘‘Why?''

Shannon rubbed her neck. ‘‘Because at home he is going to be more relaxed, not so much on guard, it's his place, he's going to feel safe. At work he is going to be the doctor or whatever the hell he is. Jenny's profile states he is will be mild mannered blend in. he isn't going to be himself. I think home is the best place for you or Jenny to pick up on him.''

Marcus eyebrows hiked at the fact he was now being included in Shannon's belief of gifts.

Jenny looked at the map again. ‘'She's right. We would get a bigger chance of sensing him in a place his mind isn't otherwise occupied.'' She looked to Marcus, waiting, giving him a smile at his amazement.

‘‘Yea. We would. Probably why I got a sense of him at the bars around the library. He was concentrating on what he was doing, but relaxed about it.''

‘‘About that?''

He looked up to Shannon. ‘‘Yea?''

‘'I need to know exactly about the poppies?''

He frowned. ‘‘Like?''

‘‘Like, are they real? Are they a picture? Is it his past? Anything Marcus. Jane and I need to know what to look for?''

He sighed, sitting back. ‘‘It's not that easy.''

‘‘Try.'' She crossed her arms, waiting.

His eyes snapped to her. ‘‘It's a feeling I get .'' He hit his chest with his finger. ‘‘How the hell am I supposed to explain a feeling.''

Jane crossed her legs, smoothing off a bit of dog hair. ‘‘You're an artist.''

His eyes moved to her. ‘'So?''

‘‘Don't you paint your feelings?'' Her eyes briefly shifted to the large empty space on the wall, before meeting his again.

His jaw twitched his skin coloring.

Jenny understood what Jane was trying to say. ‘‘She's right. If you were painting it, how would you?''

Marcus exhaled, trying to think. ‘‘It isn't a picture. It's a feeling, a sense around him.''

Shannon butted in. ‘‘Like he's with it every day?''

‘‘Yea. But it's not….'' His face screwed up in frustration. ‘'…. It's with him okay that's all I can get from it. It's not like it's a tattoo. I doubt either you or Jane are ever going to see it…. If I were painting it, I'd paint blue.''

Jane looked surprised. ‘‘Poppies are red?''

He laughed. ‘'I know that. But the sense I get is blue, not blue poppies, just blue, cold, clinical, no warmth. So if I painted it you'd have a canvas full of nothing, space and blue.'' He shrugged. He looked at all of them, seeing their confusion. ‘'You asked.''

Shannon withheld her disappointment. ‘'Thanks anyway.''

Jenny gave her not so pleased look. ‘'That doesn't help. What's next?''

Shannon sat back down, concentrating on the map, she ran a finger over the area she wanted to go to first. ‘‘We'll go here.'' Her finger stopped on the map. ‘' There are twenty residential addresses and four medical clinics. Jane and Marcus will be together. Jenny you're with me.''

Marcus grinned giving Jane a wink. She rolled her eyes.

Shannon ignored them, looking to Jenny. ‘‘How close do you need to get to sense anything?''

Jenny took a short breath, trying to calm the tempest in her stomach. ‘‘It depends, I won't know till I'm there. But I'm pretty sure once I am I can rule out a place fairly quickly…. What are we going to do just walk into these places and?''

Shannon gave a confident smile. ‘‘The residential ones are simple.'' She tossed over two ID badges, one to Jenny and one to Marcus. ‘‘We're all doing a survey for local council improvements. The survey has already been going for two weeks. Every household has been advised it's in their area. Perfect to blend in, no one will question it and most of all no one is going to get suspicious.''

‘'You arranged this in a day?'' Marcus voiced showed his awe.

‘'I'm a cop Marcus. When I need to get things done, I do it.''

He looked down at the ID. ‘‘No shit. So, what about the medical clinics, I can't see this working.'' He tapped the ID.

‘‘No. For those, we are applying to join the clinic. We're new to the area and need to register with an M.D.''

Jenny frowned. ‘'Are all these clinics medical practices?''

Shannon smiled liking the fact Jenny thought on her feet. ‘‘No. Not all. Those we just bluff.''

Both Marcus's and Jenny's eyebrows hiked, speaking at the same time. ‘'Bluff!''


Jane chuckled. ‘‘Don't worry. The boss is the best bluffer I've worked with. Never play cards with her.''

Shannon snorted, then her face sobered. ‘‘Look, we don't have to be in any of these places long? Right?''

Both Marcus and Jenny nodded.

‘‘As long as we get our foot near the door, we can work with this. Trust me.''

Marcus grinned, clipping the ID to his shirt. ‘'Well, it isn't going to be boring that's for sure.''

Jenny managed a weak smile, looking down at the ID, right now her Nikes were telling her to run for the hills and don't look back, she took in low breathe.


Jenny smiled, Shannon's voice was like a blanket of warmth around her. ‘'I'm okay.''


Her resolve steeled, they needed her and Shannon needed her. Her eyes came up showing more conviction then she felt. ‘‘Yes.''

Shannon gave a quick smile. ‘‘Good.'' She rose again. ‘‘We leave in half an hour. Jane is going to get you set.''

Jenny's eyes shot to Jane. ‘'Set?''

Jane rose, grinning. ‘‘Won't hurt a bit.''

Jenny stood, giving Shannon a not so sure look as she followed Jane upstairs.

Marcus met Shannon's eyes. ‘'I…. Um need to tell you something.''

Shannon nodded, feeling uneasy, hoping this wasn't going to be an ex lover telling the new whatever his feelings.


She blinked, seeing he was serious. She almost laughed out loud, thinking this was a warning about Jenny. ‘‘What?''

He rose. ‘‘Just be extra careful. Listen to you're....''' he paused trying to find a word Shannon would understand and not get mad at. ‘'…. Listen to your instinct…. Don't push them away. No matter what they tell you, even if it doesn't make any sense, no matter if they feel stupid… just trust in them.''

Before Shannon could figure out what the hell he was telling her, he turned and headed upstairs.

‘'Well…. What the hell?''


Shannon looked up, hiding the smile as Jenny came in looking now slightly more bulkier then usual and very uncomfortable, she could see her shifting and scratching at the armor vest under her shirt.

‘'I'm going to sweat like a pig in this thing and I look like the blimp balloon.''

Shannon rolled the map up. ‘‘No you won't and you don't look like any sort of balloon.''

Jenny scowled at her. ‘'You're just saying that so I'll wear this.''

Shannon's grinned. ‘'No.''

Jenny itched at it again. ‘'How on earth can you wear this all day?''

‘'I don't.''

Jenny stilled, distracted from her itching. ‘'But I thought….''

Shannon packed the map into the bag. ‘'No. When you're a patrol cop its mandatory, it isn't when you're in homicide. I only use them when we are going in for arrests.''

‘'Are you wearing one today?'' Suddenly Jenny felt sick, her vision suddenly raw in her mind.

Shannon zipped the bag closed, turning. ‘‘We only have one.''

Jenny started undoing her buttons.

Shannon looked around to see if she had forgotten anything, turning, her eyes bulged. She ran over. ‘‘Hey what are you doing?''

Jenny slapped her hands away. ‘‘You're wearing this.''

‘‘The hell I am.'' Without thinking she grabbed both of Jenny's hands at the wrists.

Jenny let out a gasp, feeling the jolt of the full visions, trying to break the hold. ‘‘No. nooooo.''

Shannon saw it, she didn't know how, but she saw it. Blood, lots of it. Jenny screaming, a bolt of pain, large spreading cold, ice cold. Wrists were torn from her grip, shattering the image. Shannon grunted stepping back, looking down at her hands, feeling like they'd just been submerged in ice water. Her voice was unsteady. ‘'What…. Was that!?''

Jenny tried to ease the vertigo, pulling herself back to center. ‘'You.'' Confused eyes looked at her. ‘‘That's what I see…. You!'' Angrily she pulled the vest over her head. ‘'So you're wearing this damn thing.'' She threw it at her, well aware she was shaking.

Shannon just managed to catch it, her own body screaming protest at what she'd just seen and felt. She looked down at the vest, then over to Jenny, seeing the anguish there. ‘'You see me getting hurt?''

Jenny bit her lip, trying hard not to give into the sudden need to cry, and yell and run. ‘‘Yes.''

Shannon swallowed. ‘'How?''

Jenny hugged herself. ‘'I don't know. You saw what I see.''

Shannon shifted so she could sit on the arm of the leather chair. She didn't know how she felt. Should she be scared? She glanced over to Jenny seeing that she was. Her eyes fell to the vest. Was she wearing this in the vision? Her brow crunched, trying to think. Something suddenly did made sense. ‘'Marcus knows doesn't he?''

Jenny startled eyes came up.

Shannon managed a weak smile. ‘'I think he tried to warn me.''

‘‘He only saw it because he was holding my hand at the time. I didn't tell him.''

Now another thing made sense to Shannon. ‘‘In the car today, that's the first time you saw?''

Jenny was getting over the shock of Shannon knowing so much, what worried her more was the fact the detective was so calm, distant. ‘‘Yes.''

Shannon nodded, looking down at the vest, as her finger's absentmindedly picked at the Velcro tab. So this was what mortality felt like, to be seen in a vision by an oracle. She wondered if this was how the ancient Spartans felt. Knowing they were going into battle to die. Would she be carried home on a shield, in honor? Or would another lunatic catch her unawares? ‘'Do I die?''

Jenny had to clamp down on her sob. She looked away, closing her eyes. ‘'I don't know.''

Shannon simply nodded.

Jenny couldn't take it anymore, she opened her eyes, looking to the bowed headed figure. ‘'Shannon.''


‘‘Please wear the vest.''

The desperation in the voice pulled at something deep inside Shannon, she took in a long ragged breath. This wasn't about her, this wasn't why she was here. Jenny was. She pulled the Velcro tabs free rising, walking towards her. ‘'No.'' she placed it over the shocked psychic's head, using the stunned silence to attach the vest back into place, making sure it was secure, she began doing the buttons back up, amazed her hands weren't shaking.

‘'I make my own destiny and right now that destiny is to protect you. We have to catch him. We can do that. That's all that's going to happen….'' She resisted the urge to cup the psychic's cheek, knowing how rattled she was. Instead she let her eyes show how much it meant. ‘' Thanks for the warning.''

Jenny stuttered a breath, this time she couldn't stop the tears. ‘‘Please.''

Shannon shook her head, her guts twisting at the anguish she heard. ‘‘Sorry. Besides I really hate those things, make me itch like crazy.''

Jenny was caught between a laugh and a sob. But she knew what she wanted to do and this time she didn't fight it. She threw herself into Shannon's startled arms, which quickly folded around her. ‘‘You're so stubborn.''

‘'That's what my mom says too.'' Shannon gave over to the feeling, knowing what would come, almost sighing as she felt the warm spread between them. She still didn't know what that was, but she was learning to become addicted to it.

Marcus turned the corner, suddenly caught in what he was seeing, not at all sure how he felt. He stopped, hearing Jane curse as she walked into him.

Jane slapped him. ‘‘Hey idiot.''

He turned his head to her, shrugging. ‘'Sorry.''

Giving him an annoyed look as she moved past him, only to stop dead at the two hugging. ‘‘Oh…. Um'' She cleared her throat, loudly.

Shannon looked over to them, waiting for Jenny to break the hug, because right now she couldn't. She met Marcus's eyes, seeing the spark of jealous, then the change to understanding, he met her eyes, sadness now. Shannon just nodded his unanswered question. His eyes fell.

Jane watched the exchange. ‘'Are we…. Um ready to go?''

Jenny finally pulled away, giving a last squeeze, looking up to the gaze that was now on her again. She gave a weak smile. ‘‘Be careful. Please.'' She knew it meant nothing, she knew her vision was always right, nothing would change it. But Shannon was right, they had to catch him.

‘'I will.''

Jenny pulled what little of herself was left together, locking out the emotions, locking it all out. She straightened, turning to Jane. ‘‘Yes. We're ready to go.''

Marcus saw the change in her, it made his spine tingle.

Shannon saw and felt it and it made her sad to know this was the only way Jenny could deal with this.

Jane saw it, not knowing what was going on but for once getting the feeling they might just catch this basterd. She nodded to Jenny, moving towards the front door, the hold all she packed early in her hand.

Bud didn't like it. He felt the cold emanating from his mistress, he went to her, whimpering. She smiled down at him, kneeling to hug him.

Shannon hated what she had to say next. ‘‘He can't come.''

Jenny stiffened, but didn't turn, she'd already thought as much. She hugged him harder.

Shannon lifted her rucksack. Standing beside the kneeled figure. ‘'Our cover isn't going to hold with a dog with us. Even in the car, someone could notice. I'm sorry.''

Jenny stroked across bud's head, letting him lick her hand. ‘‘You've got to stay here boy.''

He tilted his head.

‘'I know you want to come, but we need you guard the house.''

He looked around, then looked at her unconvinced the house needed guarding.

She smiled again. ‘'I know. But you have too.''

He snuggled closer to her. ‘'Argoof.''

‘She hugged him harder, rising, walking to the door. He moved to follow. ‘'Stay. Guard.'' Her voice was stern.

He stopped, unsure, he took a step closer to her, head down, tail nervously wagging.


He flinched, looking to Shannon. Then back to his mistress, something was wrong with her, it radiated now in black waves. He'd never disobeyed before, but he didn't want to stay. He made to make another step.


Even Shannon flinched this time, her eyes going to Jenny. Her voice ice, her eyes ice. Shannon swallowed. ‘'Jen?''

Angry eyes came to her. ‘'You said he couldn't come. So stay out of it.''

Marcus shifted. ‘'I'll be in the car.'' He turned leaving. He didn't want to see this.

Jenny's eyes fixed on her dog. ‘'STAY!'' she turned, and headed from the room. Slamming the front door as she left the house.

Bud looked at Shannon again. Whimpering. Finally he lay down, whining as he did.

Shannon caught the ripple across his muscles, she let out a breath. Resisting the urge to stroke him as she walked past, well aware his sad eyes were following. She turned back to him at the doorway. ‘'She isn't mad at you.''

He licked his chops.

Shannon gave him a weak smile, moving to the door, suddenly she stopped, it felt wrong, her jaw twitched, shaking her head she opened the front door, but the more she moved from the house the more wrong it felt. Her eyes went to the Suv, seeing the three waiting for her. That felt wrong too, incomplete. She frowned, what the hell was wrong with her now? She eyes went to the window, seeing bud standing up, his front paws scratching franticly at the pane, his eyes locked on the Suv, starting to bark. Shannon's eyes went to the car again, seeing Jenny looking deliberately away from him. Suddenly Marcus words came back to her. ‘'No matter how stupid…. Trust in them.''

Her eyes went to the dog, seeing his growing panic. That was what was wrong. ‘'Damn it.''

She opened the front door, calling bud to her. He rounded the corner in a skid, his claws skimming across the tiles. She grabbed at him, avoiding the licks. Pushing him to sit. Meeting his eyes. ‘'Listen to me.''

He stilled.

‘'You stay with her. Get me?''

He sneezed.

‘‘No. No messing around, no matter what happens, no matter who is hurt or who else needs your protection you … You protect her. Even if she doesn't want it. Even if she orders you to do something else. You ignore her. You protect Jenny only.''

His eyes seem to narrow.

‘‘I need you to do this…. No one else. Not Marcus, Not Jane, Not even me.''

A paw came up, pawing at her hand. She took it, smiling. ‘‘Yea I know me too. But you protect her boy, because this man is gonna try and hurt her.''

He growled.

‘'I feel it in my gut.''


‘‘Yea gut.''

She didn't for one minute think how absurd this was, all she knew was he had to come with them ‘'We got a deal?''

His paw came up again. She grinned taking it, shaking. ‘‘Okay, let's get ya to your momma.''

He started dancing, wagging his tail to the point it whipped her legs. She laughed reaching across for the lead, clipping it on him.

Marcus turned hearing the door shut, his eyes widened seeing bud approach.

‘‘What the hell, thought he wasn't coming?''

Jenny eyes left the window, turning, she felt the surprise and the anger.

Shannon opened the back passenger door. ‘‘In you go.'' Closing it once he was in, moving down the side of the car towards the drivers seat, she was well aware of the angry translucent gaze that followed her.

Bud jumped in, licking at anyone close, which this time was Jane. ‘‘Well. Ewwww.''

As Shannon got in, she felt the fire of emerald eyes again.

‘'Why? Why make me do that to him then change your mind?''

Shannon turned to the pissed off voice. ‘'Because he needs to come. Without him it doesn't feel right.''

Marcus eyes shot from bud to the driver's mirror, seeing Shannon's eyes briefly look to him in it. He grinned.

‘'So now you're the psychic.'' Jenny snort held no humor. She pulled her sunglasses from her pocket, slipping them on, resisting the urge to itch the area where the armor rubbed.

Shannon inhaled, calming herself. ‘‘Jenny. Don't make catching him turn you into what you were. You don't need too, you're not alone this time.''

Jenny jerked, feeling the shard of ice inside her fracture.

Shannon waited, hoping she would say something, she shook her head disappointed as Jenny simply looked back out of the passenger window.

‘'Jane what's the first address.''


The car had been mainly silent, except for Marcus and Jane making idle conversation, the nearer they got to the first address the quieter it had become, if was if all humor or normality didn't have a place anymore.

Shannon had driven around the first street twice, checking the area, waiting for either Marcus or Jenny to show any signs of seeing or feeling anything. Finally on the third pass she slowed the car four houses down from the first address, she turned the engine off. ‘'Jane?''

Jane flicked open the first file on her lap. ‘‘Okay. Name is Norman Roberts age 42. Is a surgeon at St Jude's hospital? House number 235.''

All eyes went up the street to the normal looking suburb house.

‘'He's divorced, lives alone.''

Marcus coughed. ‘‘Um…. I have a question.'' He felt like he should be raising his hand.

Jane sighed. ‘'What?''

‘'It's 3 30 in the afternoon, wouldn't he be at work?''

Shannon mouth twitched.

Jane looked at him. ‘'Do you think we are complete idiots, he's off shift. He doesn't go back till Friday.''

‘‘Ah. Just checking.''

‘‘Anyway…. He drives a dark blue Saab.''

‘‘There's a car on the drive.'' Shannon hand tightened on the wheel, she chanced a glance to Jenny, wishing she could see her eyes.

Jane looked past Shannon's shoulder. She double-checked the DLV sheet. ‘'Yea that's his.''


Everyone looked at Jenny in anticipation. She felt it, her senses were stretched out trying to find any thread. Shaking her head she pulled them back. ‘'Nothing from here.''

Shannon hid her curse. ‘'Right.'' Her voice now held the tone of the homicide detective she was. ‘'Jane…. Marcus…. I want you directly opposite us, keep us in line of sight, you see anything Jane you mike me. Understood?''

Jane placed the receiver plug into her ear. ‘'Gotta ya boss.'' She passed the survey clipboard to Marcus.

‘‘If Jenny needs Marcus to come over, you'll hear it. Make an excuse too. We have open com so keep the garbage down.'' She glared at Marcus, hearing him hum the battle hymn of the Republic, in her earpiece.

He grinned sheepishly. ‘‘Sorry. Couldn't help it.''

Shannon was about to snap at him when she felt Jenny looking at her. She turned her head, surprised to see a small smile. She looked back at Marcus, realizing why he was being an ass. Her eyes went back to Jenny, adding a small smile of her own.

Jenny took a long deep breath, more to steel herself then the need for oxygen. ‘'Can we go and do this?''

Shannon gave a curt nod, seeing the strain on Jenny's face was making her own anxiety going up. ‘‘Okay, let's go.'' She undid her seatbelt, reaching behind to her belt, adjusting her gun. Seeing Jane do the same with her under arm one? ‘'I'll get out first. Jenny you next. Jane and Marcus right after.''

Shannon moved very swiftly, moving from the car, the clipboard in her hand, putting her sunglasses on to help shade the high sun. A quick check around her she moved as Jenny's door opened to go next to her.

Jenny gave her a grateful smile as she felt her presence, extending her mind's eye, her eyes closed, she turned her head as she saw a child playing, the vision changed zooming in to a dog running and playing through the sprinklers. She prodded deeper, looking searching. Her eyes opened. ‘'Nothing…. There's nothing I can sense here, everything is normal.''

Shannon nodded, seeing Marcus still by the other side of the car, seeing him move to the curbside to touch.

He rose. ‘'Nothing.''

Jane was watching them with a mix of curiosity and doubt. ‘'Right. We'll head to 228.'' She motioned to Marcus to lead the way.

Shannon watched them until they started up the driveway to 228, then her attention went back to Jenny, waiting for her to clip the lead onto bud and let him drop from the car, next to her side.

Jenny patted him, giving Shannon a look. ‘'How are you going to explain him?''

Shannon pulled the pen free from the top of the clipboard. ‘‘He…. Um is your seeing dog. Local council uses the equal disability program.''

Jenny laughed, wondering if Shannon knew just how close she was to the truth. Right now with the sun at its highest, her vision was limit to a ten feet in front of her, the rest as usual was a blur, even with the contacts and sunglasses on it didn't help.

Shannon gave a guilty smile. ‘'Ready?''

‘'No. But let's go anyway.''

This time Shannon grinned. It amazed her the amount of courage this small blonde had. ‘‘Let me lead, you just work your voodoo.''

Jenny nodded, falling into step with Shannon. Trying to settle her insides, slightly opening her senses. The first thing she felt was bud, his warmth, and his protection. It was strange and it almost made her giggle, because the next thing she sensed was Shannon, emanating the same warmth and protection. It just struck her as funny, Shannon's reaction at being told she felt like her dog. Jenny bypassed those threads of feeling, going deeper, hitting an aura of pure strength. It almost made her gasp, her eyes shifted to Shannon. It had surprised her, but it shouldn't have, even the way Shannon moved showed her strength and grace. She looked away, directing her senses towards the house they were approaching. She couldn't sense any danger, or any flashes of killer or pain.

Shannon slowed as she felt Jenny stop, she waited, seeing the film of perspiration on the psychic's skin. ‘'Jen?''

Jenny blinked, not realizing she'd stopped. ‘'Sorry.'' She started again.

‘‘Did you feel something?''

‘‘Nerves. Sorry.''

Shannon briefly touched her hand. ‘'Don't be.''

They both stopped at the front door, Shannon reached across pressing the bell, seeing Jenny stiffen in the corner of her vision.

The door opened, bringing Norman Richmond into view, he smiled, looking to them in question.

Shannon smiled her best smile. ‘'Hi. Dr Roberts were form the local council, we sent a letter a few weeks ago letting you know we were doing a survey in the area. Can you spare a moment of your time?''

His friendly eyes became wary. ‘'Survey for what? I don't remember getting a letter.''

Shannon pulled out a copy of the letter from the clipboard, handing over her ID at the same time, well aware of how silent Jenny was. Hoping she was doing her thing, rather than freezing up with fear.

Dr Roberts took the letter and ID, glancing over each. ‘'Yea I remember this now. Sorry I'm on call today I don't have time for this, send me out a postal one and I'll fill it in and send it back. ‘' He passed the letter and ID back.

Shannon kept her smile there, placing her sunglasses on her head to make eye contact with him ‘'You sure? We can get it done in less than ten minutes.''

Seeing her eyes made his smile return. ‘'I'd really like to but….''

Shannon felt Jenny's hand touch hers, then bypass to the clipboard, pulling free the postal questionnaire, she stepped forward, giving a smile to the man.

‘'We understand Sir. Thank you for doing this, the survey is important, we do like to know what the residence in the area think of the new plans.''

He smiled at her taking the survey. ‘'No problem. Thanks.'' He gave them each a smile before turning and closing the door.

Shannon found herself standing alone as Jenny turned and moved back towards the car, seeing Jane watching them from across the road. She beckoned her over while quickly catching up to Jenny. Pulling her sunglasses down with a slight curse as she got hit by the glare off one of the windscreens. ‘'Jen?''

Jenny stopped, closing down the walls, she cleared her mind turning. ‘'It isn't him.''


‘‘Yes.'' A smile creased, as she looked down. ‘'…. And the reason he didn't want to do the survey is his boyfriend is waiting upstairs.''

Shannon's eyebrows rose, as she glanced back at the house, then she chuckled. ‘'Wow. Guess we know why the marriage didn't work.''

Jenny smile vanished. ‘'Don't make fun of something you don't know. I broke into his privacy, his thoughts, his life. He's an eminent surgeon, you really think the fact he's gay is going to help his career. You of all people should know the impact of something like this getting out.''

Shannon looked down. ‘‘No one is going to know about any of this Jen. But, you're right, I shouldn't have made fun of something you have to do. I can't imagine how hard it is for you.''

Jenny accepted the apology, bending to scratch bud's head.

Marcus and Jane stopped next to them, they didn't need to ask, they'd heard on the open coms.

Shannon inhaled. ‘'Let's go.''

All four moved back to the car. As Shannon was about to get in, she looked up to the sun, this was going too slowly and she knew it.


Marcus sighed heavily, drinking back his third bottle of water, it was a hot day. They'd been to four other houses all with the same result, nothing. He wiped his forearm across his head, glancing across to Jenny and Shannon who were walking back from number five.


Shannon shook her head, reaching in through the window to take two bottles of water from her rucksack, passing one to Jenny. ‘'No. You're not sensing anything either?''

Jenny opened the bottle quenching her thirst, she poured some into her palm, quickly rubbing it in to the back of her neck, looking to Marcus for his answer too.

‘‘No nothing. Not even a trace of poppies.''

Shannon lent her hip against the car wing, glancing over to where Jane was letting bud out. ‘'I wish there was a quicker way to do this.'' She looked over to the horizon, remembering they only could do the survey calls up to seven o'clock. They were only an hour away from that.

‘'Tell me again why we didn't leave this to the task force or the F.B.I.?''

She glanced at him. ‘'Because we're running out of time. The F.B.I. can pull together more men sure, but this guy is smart, he sees unknown people canvassing his area in heavy numbers he's going to run. They'll do exactly what we are doing, four men squads per street. Except they won't know what to look for, they'll go in and hope he panics. With you two we have the best shot at him. Unless you think differently?''

He exhaled, shaking his head. ‘‘Nah. You're right.'' He smiled at Jenny. ‘'How you holding up?''

She drank the last of the water, re-screwing the top, pausing only a second to check exactly how she was doing, it surprised her to find the answer. ‘'I'm okay, tired, hot, frustrated, like the rest of us.''

Jane came ambling over, her eyes going around her as she approached. ‘'Boss, we only got an hour left.''

Jenny took the half bottle of water from Marcus's hand, ignoring his outrage, bending she poured it into her palm. Letting bud drink from it. ‘'Remind me to bring a bowl tomorrow.''

Jane took the distraction to motion to Shannon to follow. Shannon pushed away from the car. ‘‘Be right back you two. Stay by the car.''

Jane stopped when she knew they were far enough out of earshot. ‘‘Boss? This is taking too long. Five houses in one afternoon, we have over two hundred to visit and that's just in this area. The travel time in-between is slowing us down.''

Shannon didn't need to work out the maths. ‘'I know. What else can we do?''

Jane glanced over to Marcus and Jenny who were talking. Then her eyes fixed on Shannon. ‘‘We need to split up, into two teams.''

Shannon shoved her hair back out of her face. ‘‘No.''

Jane kept her gaze locked. ‘‘Boss? Think about it. I take Marcus you take Jenny…. We'll cover double the area and more houses.''

‘'I said no. We keep as a team. We need the back up.''

‘‘From who the killer? Come on, you know as well as I do if either Marcus or Jenny spot him, we back off and call in the Calvary he isn't going to know we've got the drop on him.''

Shannon met her eyes. ‘'They don't spot him Jane, they sense him.''

Jane shifted uncomfortably.

Shannon saw it, she felt an uneasy feeling, wondering exactly how Jane felt about this. ‘‘If they can sense him, then maybe he can sense them. Then where is the surprise with only two of us on him? At least with four I got a damn chance of getting her away to safety and catching him.''

Jane looked down, exhaling in frustration. ‘‘How can you believe this spooky shit?''

Shannon lips thinned. ‘‘If you don't believe it why the hell are you here?''

Jane's eyes snapped up. ‘‘Because I trust you.''

‘‘Well, trust me enough to know those two feel things, I don't know how or why or how the hell they do. But they do. If you don't think you can help on this case, go back to Grieves….'' She turned heading back to the car, rattled that Jane didn't believe one thing that was going on around her.

‘'Fuck.'' Jane kicked out at a loose stone on the tarmac, watching it skitter off into a storm drain.

Jenny had seen the argument from the corner of her vision as she talked to Marcus; she also felt the burst of anger that quickly followed Shannon walking back towards them.

Marcus turned his head, following Jenny's gaze, seeing the redness of anger on Shannon's face. ‘‘Oh shit. Trouble.''

Shannon didn't bother stopping, she pulled open the driver's door, getting in. ‘‘Let's get to the next one, we're running out of time.''

Marcus shrugged his shoulders to Jenny, getting into the back seat, leaving the door open for Jane, as he slid across to the other side. He grinned at bud as he jumped in.

Shannon tapped the steering wheel, watching Jane approach, in the side mirror.

Jenny pushed her hair back off her face, seeing the same strain of anger on Jane's face as she approached; she took a step up to her, halting her in her tracks. Jenny smiled. ‘'You don't believe in what I do, do you?''

Jane bit back an angry retort, she was mad at Shannon not this woman. ‘'No.''

‘'Shannon does.''


‘‘And you trust in her. Right?''

Jane exhaled. ‘‘Yes.''

Jenny gave an understanding nod. ‘'Don't let her push you into choosing Jane. She doesn't mean too.''

Jane blinked. ‘'She…. Didn't.''

Jenny raised an eyebrow. ‘‘It isn't my way or the high way. I honestly don't care what you believe. All I ask of you is to trust me enough to know what I do is going to get the job done. Does it really matter how I do it? ‘'

Jane frowned. ‘'I suppose not.''

‘‘You know I get results?''

Jane couldn't deny that, she'd read the case files after she'd been assigned to the case. ‘‘Yea.''

‘'Then don't drive yourself nuts trying to work out how I do. It's unconventional, it doesn't make sense. There isn't going to be a logical explanation.''

‘'I don't like things that don't fit or make sense.''

‘'I know. Its part of the reason I came to you so much about the clues. I wanted a fresh clean mind, one who didn't second guess what they saw. You look for a simple answer and the simple answer is usual the right one.'' Jenny gave a soft smile.

Jane snorted, trying to hide the fact this whole conversation was making her nervous. ‘‘Believe me my mind ain't clean.''

Jenny's smile broadened. ‘‘But you don't second-guess what you see. Not unless you can't understand it. So you look for another way round it, you find a plausible answer.''

Jane looked up. ‘‘Yes.''

Jenny sighed. ‘'I'm afraid there isn't a plausible answer for what Marcus and I can do Jane. There is never going to be one. I don't even know why I can see these things and most of the world can't. What I feel and what I do, I just do. Sometimes I wish I didn't, it's screwed up my life in so many ways.'' Her eyes drifted to the trees. ‘'I don't like seeing things, I hate having no control over them, but most of all I hate seeing people and knowing what they're feeling.'' Her eyes came back to Jane. ‘'…. Because I don't get the chance to just discover what a person's like. I think that's the real gift in life. I feel like such a cheat and miss out on so much. It's made me overly cautious to the point I'd stopped looking for the good in people.''

Jane shifted nervously, even though she didn't believe she found herself asking the question. ‘‘You…. You do that to me…. Read me?''

Jenny gave a patient smile. ‘‘No. I've learned how to stop that part. I put myself behind a wall, one I can't see through, can't feel through, and can't touch through.''

Jane tilted her head. ‘'That's kinda sad.''

Jenny's started in surprise, she'd never looked at it that way before. ‘‘Yes. I suppose it is….'' She took a step closer to her. ‘'Shannon believes because she can't do otherwise, she trusts in people, she believes in people. She can't help herself.''

Jane's eyes went past Jenny's to the car, seeing her boss staring out into nothing, recognizing the agitation. Jenny's words pulled her attention back.

‘‘That's why she gets hurt.''

Jane nodded. ‘‘Yea. She tries to fix even the ones that are beyond fixing.''

Jenny gave a shy smile. ‘'I'm glad she does that, because otherwise I'd be still hiding on the island Jane, shutting myself up in house of dust, lost.''

Jane eyes jumped to her, seeing the truth.

‘'Shannon has a special gift beyond anything mine can do. She still believes in the goodness of the world and she needs people like you to protect her from it.''

Jane blushed. ‘'I don't do that.''

Jenny surprised herself by reaching out and laying her hand on Jane's arm.

‘‘Yes you do. She needs you now more than ever Jane. Don't let your disbelief in Marcus and me, make you leave her.''

Jane looked down at the hand, wondering why her skin suddenly felt warm where it touched. ‘'I wasn't going to leave. She just pissed me off a little. But she does that most times anyway. No biggy.''

Jenny laughed stepping back, removing her hand. ‘‘Oh. I'm with you there, half the time I want to strangle her.''

Jane relaxed. ‘‘And the other half?''

Jenny's laugh, turned into a cough, she blushed. ‘‘Um.''

Jane smirked. ‘'Thought as much.''

Jenny's blushed deepened, making Jane chuckle.

Shannon's annoyed yell broke into the silence. ‘'Are you two going to chit chat all day or can we go to the next address.''

Jenny gave Jane one last look before returning to the car. Jane stood for a moment, looking around, straightening out her thoughts. Shaking her head she headed back towards the car. Realizing it didn't matter how they did it, just that they did it and caught this sod of a bitch.


House number six had been as much as a disappointment as the others. They couldn't take the risk of using the cover of the survey after seven o'clock, so had all decided to return to Marcus's house. When they had gotten back, very little was said. Everyone seemed to be caught in their own thoughts. Shannon needed something to be done and knowing she needed more update information, she'd decided to send Jane back to the precinct to talk to Grieves. Marcus had agreed to go with her.

Now Shannon was annoyed as she paced up and down the living room she'd let them go at all. If they were held, she wouldn't know what the hell was going on. She stopped pacing, striding to the window, pushing the blind slate down to peer out into the night, checking the road. They'd been gone too long.

‘'You know you're driving me crazy.''

Shannon snapped the blind back into place as she jerked around to the voice, relaxing as she saw Jenny stood in the doorway, wondering again how the hell the psychic could sneak up on her so much. ‘‘Why?''

Jenny sighed, rubbing at her eyes, she was tired, dead tired. ‘'Well for one your pacing sounds like a heard of elephants on a wooden floor.''

Shannon looked down at the exposed floorboards. ‘‘Sorry…. And two?''

‘‘You're giving me stomach ache.'' Jenny slipped into the big leather chair, pulling her legs up under her dressing gown.

‘'Stomach ache?''

Jenny was caught in mid yawn, she looked guiltily across. ‘'I felt your anxiety, and before you get mad at me, I was asleep so my walls weren't up and you're throwing out enough vibes to get through anyway.''

Shannon chewed the inside of her mouth. ‘'Sorry I woke you. Go back up, I won't pace.'' She moved to the window, slipping the slant down again to stare outside.

Jenny shook her head, leaning it back against the leather. Even in the dimmed light she could see how exhausted Shannon looked and how tense. ‘'Are they that late?''

Shannon caught the note of worry. ‘‘Well they're taken longer than they should be…. I expected them an hour ago.''

Jenny chewed an edge of a nail that had been catching in the cotton of her robe. ‘‘And because you don't know why, it's making you nervous.''

Shannon dropped her head slightly, smiling at how Jenny was getting to know her so well. ‘‘Yea.''

‘‘Maybe they stopped for pizza.'' Jenny had to bite her lip to stop from laughing at the stony unamused blue gaze suddenly leveled on her.

‘'If they have, I'm going to shoot Marcus.''

Jenny smiled. ‘‘Just Marcus?''

‘‘Yes. Because Jane knows better, and it would be his sweet talking that got them to go for pizza.''

Jenny laughed. ‘‘He'll like that you called it sweet-talking. Most call it whining.''

Shannon smiled, enjoying the relaxed look on Jenny's face, knowing today had taken a lot out of her. ‘'You should go back to bed.'' Her eyes went back to the street.

Jenny sighed, rising. ‘‘And do what? You expect me to sleep with you so tense and now knowing they‘re late?'' she drew level with Shannon looking out into the street. ‘'Why would they be?''

‘'F.B.I…. Grieves could have been told to hold Jane…. Jane might think she's being followed and is trying to lose the tail. She won't come back here if she thinks she's followed. There wouldn't be any other reason. Nothing would have happened to them.''

Jenny turned, folding her arms, leaning back against the still. ‘'…and how long would they hold her?''

Shannon sighed. ‘'As long as they like, if they think she's withholding information. I told Marcus to stay in the car when Jane went in. I'd hope he'd come back and tell us if she was.''

‘‘He would. But he'd make sure first.''

Shannon looked across at her. ‘‘Has he always been so gallant?''

Jenny smiled remembering a fond memory. ‘‘Yes…. It's his nature.'' She met Shannon's eyes. ‘'Very much like yours.''

Shannon looked away knowing she was blushing. ‘‘Some would disagree.''

Jenny shrugged. ‘‘As I said they're idiots.''

Shannon body tensed. ‘'Car.''

Jenny turned, looking out, recognizing the SUVs. ‘'See, nothing to worry about.''

‘'I see one pizza box, I'm shooting Sir Galahad.'' She moved from the window, heading right for the front door.

Jenny just grinned, deciding now they were safe, she really needed to get some sleep.


Jane jumped in surprise, as the front door was wrenched open.

‘'Where the hell have you been?''

‘'Good to see you too boss.'' She moved past into the hall. Letting Marcus go ahead of her. Looking at Shannon for the first time and seeing the etched lines of worry. ‘'I'll explain in a minute.'' Her eyes darted to Jenny coming out of the living room and back to Shannon's in warning.

Shannon nodded. ‘'Well their back safe and sound. Marcus you look beat why don't you go get some sleep.''

He nodded solemnly, he already knew what Jane was going to tell Shannon. ‘‘Yea. Come on jen. You look as bushed as I feel.''

Jenny let him put his arm over her shoulder and guide them to the stairs. ‘‘We were worried.''

He hugged her closer, mounting the stairs. ‘‘Awwwww even Shannon? That's so cute.'' He looked over his shoulder to the detective with an amused grin.

Shannon didn't notice she was too busy wondering why Jane looked so nervous. She followed Jane into the living room. ‘'Well?''

Jane sat, exhaling. ‘'The F.B.I. have put an internal warrant out for Jenny.''

‘'What?!'' Shannon caught her raised voice, looking to the hallway, she moved to the door closing it. ‘'Why?''

‘'They think she's holding things back from them, and I'm pretty damn sure they think she has something to do with this….'' Jane's own anger was only just under control.

‘'The stupid shits.'' Shannon paced then remembered the floor boards and stopped. ‘'Are they nuts?'' she saw Jane look away. ‘'What?''

Jane shifted. ‘'That's not the worst of it.'' She reached over snagging her bag, pulling it open she took out the newspaper, nervously shifting in her hands before holding it out to Shannon.

Shannon's eyes widened, seeing the half folded picture, she snatched it, opening it up fully to the front page, reading the headline above Jenny's picture.

Psychic enters hunt for the ‘Tooth Fairy.'

Exclusive story.

Psychic Jennifer Newton has helped the F.B.I. and many law-in-forcemeat divisions in the course of ten years, with outstanding results.

Coming out of her seclusion on Dunham Island, she joined local task forces to help catch the ‘Tooth fairy' She has already been able to solve previously unsolvable clues, which have given new leads. A reliable source within the department has informed us.

Shannon threw the newspaper down, feeling her blood boil. ‘‘How the fuck did they get this?''

Jane almost took a step back at the anger directed. ‘'I'm guessing the F.B.I. leaked it boss. To get her on the radar.''

For a moment a red rage filtered into her mind as peter came to mind. Would he do this? Do this to get back at her? Do this again? She shook it clear. ‘'Damn it. Is it national?''

Jane slowly nodded.


Jane swallowed and nodded again. ‘‘It's all over the news boss, we even caught it on the local network radio.''

‘'Fuck.'' Shannon drew her hand back through her hair in annoyance, this changed everything. She turned to Jane, seeing her start at the sudden movement. ‘' Why didn't they hold you?''

‘'I didn't go in, Grieves had one our guys waiting outside the precinct, the F.B.I. are all over the place. He told us to get the hell out and stay out of contact until the Captain could figure something out. I show up again, they got orders to hold me for questioning….'' She swallowed. ‘‘They got a warrant for you too Shannon. Withholding information and removing Jenny from custody. They're pretty pissed about that…. We took the long way back in case we were followed, we weren't.''

‘'This is so fucking screwed up. We're trying to catch this guy for Christ's sake not aid him. Jenny's got nothing to do with this. Nothing!''

‘'I know…. What are we going to do?''

Shannon didn't have an answer, her brain was trying to think of one, but nothing came up. Her eyes dipped to the newspaper on the floor. They'd even revealed where Jenny lived. Jenny's safe place was gone. The fight left her, slight desperation set in at the reality of what those words on the front page would mean to Jenny. ‘‘They don't know what they've done.'' She lifted the paper, looking across to Jane. ‘‘They've just told the basterd where to find her. They're using her as bait.''

Jane nodded sadly.

Shannon sat down, breathing heavily, everything was coming apart. The one advantage they had, had just been taking away from them.

‘‘Maybe… maybe we should go in boss.'' Her voice was tentative as she continued. ‘‘Sort this mess out. Tell them what we've been doing, why we left the island like we did. Clear Jenny of any suspicion.''

Shannon's fist clenched, crumpling the newspaper in them. ‘‘Maybe….''

‘‘They'll take her into protective custody, at least he won't get anywhere near her.''

Shannon's eyes sparked again. ‘‘How long you think that's going to last? Two weeks? A month? We know how they work Jane, they give it as long as they think she's useful.''

Jane dropped her eyes. ‘'This is all so screwed Shannon. It shouldn't be like this.''

Shannon scoffed bitterly. ‘'No shit…. He'll wait. Just stop what he's doing and wait. He'll do the same for Jenny.'' She closed her eyes.

Jane cursed, she hated seeing Shannon this way, seeing what the world was really like. ‘'Boss. I just want you to know what ever is decided I got your back.''

Shannon slowly opened her eyes, looking across. ‘'I should order your ass to turn yourself in. Tell them I ordered you, at least save your career.''

Jane shrugged. ‘'Wouldn't listen.''

Shannon held her gaze, seeing she meant it. ‘‘You're a good friend and one of the best detectives I've worked with and I'm never going to get anyone better then you watching my sorry ass. I should have told you that before.''

Jane blushed uncomfortably at the praise. ‘'Likewise boss…. So, I guess that means were not turning ourselves in?''

‘'I can't make that decision.'' Shannon rose, holding the newspaper tighter. ‘'I have to show this to Jenny. Whatever she wants to do, we do. Okay?''

‘'I wouldn't blame her if she wanted to just disappear. But yeah I agree with whatever she chooses.'' She pulled off her jacket, now feeling the fatigue of the day. ‘'We really have screwed up her safe world haven't we?''

Shannon flinched as she walked past to the door, she paused on opening it, her voice low. ‘‘Yea I have.'' She opened the door and left, closing it behind her.

Jane inhaled, hearing the ‘I'. Shaking her head at once again the boss was taking everything on her shoulders, she sank into the chair exhausted.

Jenny blinked in the darkness, sitting up as she heard the tap on the door, knowing it was what had pulled her from the light sleep she'd just fallen into.

She glanced at the clock, only fifteen minutes had gone by since she'd gone to bed again. ‘'Yeah?''

‘‘It's Shannon. Can I come in? I need to talk to you?''

Jenny sat right up, pulling the blanket further up, reaching across to click on the sidelight, wincing as the brightness lit the room. ‘'Sure. Come in.'' Jenny was momentarily shocked by what she saw in the detective as she entered, something was wrong. She sat up more. ‘'Shannon?''

Shannon took a breath. ‘‘Well I know why they were late.'' Her attempt at humor didn't work. She held out the paper. ‘'I'm sorry.''

Jenny frowned, looking at it then back to Shannon, still shaken by the change, she took the paper, gasping as she caught her picture on the front.

‘‘Oh no.'' she read it, then sat back, feeling the ripples of fear escape from their newly formed walls she'd managed to put them behind. Her mouth was dry. ‘‘Ho…. How?''

‘'F.B.I. At a guess.''

‘'Why?'' She couldn't take her eyes off the picture of herself, it was one she recognized that was used in D.C. Her worse nightmare was once again replaying. Her hands were trembling, she gripped the edges of the paper harder. ‘'Why do this?''

‘‘They want you back. Putting where you live, who you are, what you look like means he knows. They're hoping fear of him will send you running back to them…. Plus….'' Shannon's voice broke.

It made Jenny look up. ‘‘Plus?''

‘‘They're hoping it will draw him out. They're using you as bait.''

Jenny swallowed hard. ‘'Jesus.''

Shannon sagged, hearing the fear, hearing the panic. She felt useless. This was because of her. Bringing Jenny into this meant Jenny had lost everything. Her safe place, her identify, and now possibly her life. ‘'I'm sorry.''

Jenny's fear stuttered, she looked up into the anguished gaze, seeing beyond it. Seeing exactly what was going on. ‘‘This isn't your fault.''

Shannon looked away, her bitterness coming out. ‘'isn't it. I'm the one that came to you. Begged you to help. Pushed you. I promised you I'd keep you out of the press. I promised you the F.B.I. wouldn't get their hooks into you again.'' Her eyes came back around. ‘'I promised you you'd be safe.''

Jenny wanted to argue, but she had very little to argue with. ‘‘This wasn't your doing Shannon. The F.B.I. did this…. Not you. You can't promise what they will do. You don't have any control of them.''

Shannon scoffed, her self-loathing unable to listen. ‘'Are you feeling safe right now?''

Jenny didn't have to think about it. ‘‘Yes.''

Shannon stilled, her eyes dropping. ‘‘How can you say that?''

‘‘Because it's true. I feel safe with you.'' She watched as Shannon's jaw worked, just seeing the tension there made her own jaw hurt, then Shannon sagged, her shoulders dropped. ‘'Shannon?''


‘‘Please don't do this to yourself.''

Shannon sagged this time to the point she had to sit down on the bed. ‘'I feel like I messed everything up.''

‘‘You didn't. They did.'' Suddenly Jenny felt angry as she looked back down rereading the article. ‘' They are so stupid, they've just given him all the damn power he was looking for.''

Shannon's eyes shifted to Jenny. ‘‘How you work that out?''

She rustled the paper, turning the front page to Shannon. ‘‘They just told him they don't have a clue who he is, or where he is. They're using a psychic to find him for fuck sake. He isn't stupid enough to take the bait to find me, he'll know they would be watching. They've also just told him, that if he stops and goes away, they haven't got a chance in hell of ever catching him. Everything now is on his terms.''

Shannon's eyes dipped to the page, now seeing what Jenny saw. ‘‘He's going to go to ground.''

Jenny sadly nodded. ‘‘Until he feels safe again to finish his work.'' She left out the part of ‘and come after me.' She was a threat. Whether he believed in psychics or not, he wouldn't be able to resist the temptation to make sure she didn't know anything.

Shannon was caught again in what to do. She looked straight at Jenny. ‘‘If you want to go in, I'll take you and if you want to disappear, I'll help with that too.''

Jenny sucked in a breath. She wanted to go home, but that wasn't safe anymore. She wanted this to stop to go away, but it wouldn't, it couldn't. Her mind was teetering on the edge, she could feel it. It wanted to shut down, go into the dark place, to hide. Her eyes finally met Shannon's concerned gaze, knowing none of those were an option anymore. ‘‘They want you too, don't they? For helping me, for disobeying orders.''

Shannon didn't bother lying. ‘‘Yes. But I'll handle it. That isn't important. I want you safe and I want you to do what you need to do.''

Jenny looked down, staring at the picture of herself. She expanded her lungs with a huge breath. ‘'I need to catch him. That's the only way to make this right.''


‘'I know okay I know.'' Her eyes came up, fierce now with the knowledge of what she wanted. It had been a long time since she'd felt that certain about anything. ‘'We catch him.''

‘'How? He knows what you look like, we can't use the survey as a cover anymore.''

Jenny thought. ‘‘Then we don't use it. We use me.''

Shannon's eyes shot to her. ‘'I'm not using you as bait.''

Jenny smiled at the protectiveness there. ‘'I wasn't suggesting that. I meant we use my gift full force, no hiding. We use the plan we had, we go to addresses.''

‘‘And if he sees you?''

Jenny used all her bravado to shrug. ‘‘Then he sees me….'' Her eyes steeled. ‘‘…. But not before I see him. They've given me a slight advantage doing this article…. He now knows who I am. Before he didn't. He's not going to be able to hide the fact he recognizes me. Or the fact I'm a threat to him. I will sense that Shannon, because now, he's a threat to me! One of the things my gift has always given me, is a sense of personal danger. I go within a hundred feet of him and he sees me, that's going to go off like an alarm bells in my head.''

Shannon didn't look convinced. ‘'I don't like it.''

Jenny exhaled in frustration. ‘‘Then give me a better plan?''

‘'I can't…. But doesn't mean to say I have to like yours.'' Shannon eyes came up. ‘'Tell me you're really okay with this?''

Jenny sagged back, throwing the paper across the room. ‘'I can't, because I'm not. I'm barely holding it together. But, going in isn't the answer. The F.B.I. are going to question me and question me, use me as bait. Then discover he isn't going to go for it. You and I both know I don't get protective custody forever. I get it as long as they see him as a threat….'' She paused. ‘‘Maybe it will last for a few months. He'd have stopped killing. Eventually they'll make a decision protective custody isn't needed, they'll leave me alone, tell me to keep in touch.'' Her eyes fell on Shannon, seeing she knew that. ‘‘As for you and Jane, you'll get your career ruined, because you went up against the F.B.I. you'll get demoted or worse. Don't ask me to sit by in my safe protective custody and live with knowing I ruined both your lives because you trusted in me, because I can't do that. '' She sat forward.

‘'So, the only option open to either of us, for things to work out the way we both can live with, is to go an catch him. I'm the only way we can do that now.''

Shannon rubbed her face, more tired then she'd ever felt in her entire life.

She gave a very small nod. ‘'Alright.''

Jenny felt her insides twist.

Shannon felt it, she looked across. ‘'What?''

Jenny gave a curt laugh. ‘'I was hoping you'd have a better plan.''

It made Shannon grin, why she didn't have a clue. ‘'I could steal you away to a desert island?''

Jenny sank down into the pillow, staring at Shannon. ‘'I think I've done my time of secluded islands. But thanks for the thought.'' She felt so drained, she saw the same mirrored in Shannon. ‘'Come here.'' She shifted over, patting the side of the bed next to her.

Shannon froze, looking at it, then Jenny.

Jenny almost laughed at the rabbit caught in headlight look. ‘'I'm not going to ravish you for many reasons, one of them being I'm exhausted, so god only knows how you feel. So, come here.''

Shannon shifted up, letting Jenny push her down onto her side to lie. She shuffled to get comfortable, feeling her body relax as it finally got to lay down. She punched the pillow to get comfortable, feeling Jenny shift away, then the light went off. She felt Jenny move back down under the blanket. Feeling her back touch hers. Her brow frowned, what does this mean? Should I be here? What if it's too much for her? She shifted, trying to move away so not to crowd the psychic. She took along breath. Her eyes blinking in the darkness. She frowned again.

‘'Stop thinking so much and go to sleep.''

Shannon started. ‘‘How you know I was thinking?''

‘‘You grind your teeth, now shut up, stop freaking out that's my department and go to sleep.''

Shannon grinned. ‘‘That an order.''


Shannon closed her eyes.

Jenny let out her held breath, it was weird hearing someone else breathe that wasn't bud. Her body was trying to get her to move away, but she couldn't. She needed to feel the warmth. Shannon's reaction had tempered her own fear of almost jumping out of her skin as she felt Shannon shift to get comfortable. But, it couldn't win out of the need for the warmth. She listened as Shannon's teeth grinding ebbed away, and her breathing to even out. She glanced over her shoulder, slight rising to see Shannon's face. She smiled, seeing the tension had gone now she was a sleep. She turned back, snuggling into her pillow. Letting out a long sigh. She'd missed this, missed human contact. She blinked, realizing she felt no fear now, there wasn't anything of D.C. remotely in her mind, in fact she tried to call it up but there was nothing there, only the memory. She felt as Shannon turned over, she did however nearly jump out of her skin as an arm came over her waist and felt Shannon snuggle up to the back of her. She swallowed hard, not because of fear, but because her body woke up to the need of touch. She punched the pillow, groaning. ‘'Great, now you pick the time to want her.''

She punched the pillow again, closing her eyes well aware she held a stupid smile on her face.


Marcus looked up, nearly choking on his egg muffin. ‘'What did you just say?'' he coughed again to clear his throat, staring at Shannon.

‘'You heard me. Our plans haven't changed. We go to the addresses as preplanned.''

He wiped his mouth, his eyes going to Jenny. ‘'And your okay with this? After she's told you exactly what the F.B.I. have done to you.''

Jenny sipped her coffee, it was strange she felt more refreshed then she'd ever done. Waking up, Shannon had been gone, but she could still feel the warmth of where she'd been and also her scent. She blushed, making herself look at Marcus who was still waiting for an answer. ‘'I can't see any other way, so yes I'm okay with it. Actually it was my idea.''

‘'Then she's rubbing off on you to much.'' He rose throwing his napkin down. ‘'I don't like it. You're too exposed.''

‘'You're there, Jane's there, so is Shannon. How exactly am I exposed?''

‘‘You know damn well what I mean. We should turn ourselves in. Let the F.B.I. put their necks on the line.''

‘‘You know exactly what will happen. He'll go to ground and only come out when he knows it's safe. You expect me to be kept in a protective jail cell till then? I can take care of myself. I wish you'd trust in me Marcus.''

Jane shifted nervously, seeing the building anger in both of them, her eyes went to Shannon, who was watching them both very tight lipped.

Marcus turned his angry gaze to Shannon. ‘'This is all your doing. What couldn't you just leave her the fuck alone!''

‘'Marcus.'' Jenny's voice was a warning one.

He stared at her, then let out a long sigh, which dissolved his angry. ‘'Fine. We'll do it her way.''

‘'I told you it was mine. She doesn't like it anymore then you do. You wanted me off the damn island and in the world again, well guess what, here I am. Stop blaming Shannon for this, all she's done is show me I'm needed again and I can trust in myself. Do you want me back how I was?''

His eyes shifted to Shannon, seeing the ice steeled look, but he also saw past it. He looked back at Jenny, knowing the double meaning in her words.

‘‘You know I don't.''

‘'Then trust me. This is the right thing to do.''

He slowly nodded, retaking his seat, just staring at his hands.

Jenny's own anger ebbed. ‘'I know you care and I know why you're so mad and thank you. But you've got to start believing in me Marcus. I'm not broken anymore. So stop treating me as if I am.''

His lips twitched.

Shannon hand unclenched under the table. The show of anger from Marcus had unsettled her, she didn't blame him, it was exactly the same things she wanted to yell at Jenny. She felt Jenny watching her, with understanding in her eyes. She managed a small smile, which was answered. She took the last drink of her coffee, not really tasting it. ‘'Right. Let's go and catch this basterd and get all our lives back to normal.'' She rose, waiting.

Slowly they all rose.

Jane smiled at Jenny. ‘'You ready for your dress up?''

Jenny made a face. ‘'no.'' She followed Jane from the room.

Shannon's eyes went to Marcus, seeing his anger still there. She turned from him going to the hold all. Pulling out what she wanted, moving to him.

He stared at her, then his eyes fell to his hands, his eyes widened, seeing the gun in the holster.

‘'Can you use one of these enough that you don't shoot your own foot off?''

Marcus swallowed. ‘'I've shot at the practice range. My brother in law is a cop. But you knew that.'' His eyes rose to hers. ‘‘How much trouble can you get into for giving me this?''

She shrugged. ‘'Depends if you shoot the wrong person.''

He was caught in whether she was serious or not. He took the gun, pulling it from the holster, pulling the clip free, checking it, he shoved it back in with a resounding click! He pushed the safety back, shoving it back in the holster. Well aware his hands were sweating. Could he shoot someone? The answer came quickly. Yes, to protect Jenny, yes he could. He reached back, clipping it to his belt, pulling his T-shirt over the top of it. His eyes back on Shannon. ‘'Then I'll make sure I shoot the right one.''

She managed a smile, wondering if he meant her. She watched him leave the kitchen. Pushing the sudden doubt away at what she'd just done. It broke so many rules, ones she'd never crossed before. She knew why. Rules didn't matter when it came to protecting Jenny. She knew it would give her a headache later, trying to figure out why. But right now she didn't care as long as Jenny was kept safe, even if it did mean she was depending on Marcus to not shoot her in the ass. Hearing the front door open, she dipped grabbing the hold all, heading out after her strange new team.


They visited eight houses with the same result as the first five. They didn't bother with using the cover of the survey, now they needed not be noticed, especially with Jenny's face spread over the news. They'd used various reasons for approaching the house. Lost their way, lost pet. The bluff was working so far and only one person had looked at Jenny as if they recognized her from somewhere. After that, Jenny kept back into the background more, keeping at a distance where she could be seen but not identified.

The park they'd stopped for a break was mostly clear of people, it was a mid week, teenagers were in class and parents were either at work or at home. The main occupants were younger children in playgroups or older residents.

Jenny sighed, closing her eyes as she lent her neck back to feel the warmth of sun on her face. Her mind was full of clutter, opening up all the time was letting so much in. mostly the worry and fear of the people around her. Opening her eyes she looked left watching Shannon talking to Jane. Her gaze shifted to Marcus who was stood by the lake, throwing stones across it. She could feel his frustration from here.

‘'Jane thinks we need to move to the clinics. Cover more ground.''

Jenny lifted her hand to shade against the blast of sun, which reached her even through her sunglasses as she looked up into Shannon's silhouetted figure. ‘'What you think?''

Shannon noticed Jenny's problem, she sat down next to her. Pulling her knees up to rest her chin on. ‘'I think she's right…. For now anyway. It changes everything about him being on guard. I don't think even at home he's going to drop it now.'' She pulled up a handful of grass, throwing it aside.

Jenny sighed. ‘‘You're right.''

Shannon's eyes shifted to Marcus. ‘‘Is he still pissed at me for getting you into this? He's been pretty quiet.''

‘'I think he's mad at lot of things right now…. It isn't just you.''


Jane came over, looking at both of them. ‘‘If we're going to do the clinics we need to leave now boss. Two of them shut at three thirty.''

Shannon nodded. ‘'Which ones the closest?''

‘'McNab Clinic. It's about fifteen minutes from here.''

Shannon rose, brushing her hands off, turning to offer a hand to Jenny, who took it with a grin, before Shannon had time to realize what she'd done, Jenny squeezed her hand and turned heading back towards the car. She'd think about it later, right now she had things to do. ‘'I need to make a call.'' She flipped open her cell, moving away so she wouldn't be heard.

Jane turned away. ‘'Marcus!'' she watched him stiffen, then throw another stone. Jane sighed, yelling again. ‘'Marcus!''

He finally turned, raising a hand in acknowledgement.

Jane frowned. ‘'What's up with him?''

Shannon clicked the cell closed, lifting the rucksack, briefly looking to Marcus. ‘‘He's pissed at me.''

‘'For what? Trying to catch the bad guy.''

Shannon's eyes followed Jenny as she headed back towards the car. ‘‘No. for getting Jenny out of her darkness. When he couldn't.''

Jane sighed, shaking her head. ‘'I thought he would have been glad of that.''

Shannon fell into pace with Jane as they headed for the car. ‘‘He is. But he's jealous that I could do what he couldn't. He'll deal with it. Just give him some space.''

Jane rolled her eyes. ‘‘You're getting soft boss. Normally you would have shot him for being such a pain in the ass. He needs to grow up.''

Shannon laughed, pulling open the driver's door. Her eyes shifting to Marcus as he came closer.

He straightened under the gaze, calling bud to him. Before giving her a look that told her exactly what he thought of her.

Shannon sighed heavily. ‘‘Okay let's go.''


Shannon pulled the car over, looking over the area in front. One large building with parking lot spread out across the entrance area.

Jane sat forward, doing the same. ‘‘How we going in boss?''

‘‘How many doctors they have here?''

Jane shifted back pulling the file free, reading. ‘'Eight. All in today. Six women two men.''

‘'What time this place close?''


Shannon chewed her lip.

‘‘We could just wait here and watch them come out.''

Jane glared at Marcus.


‘‘We're on a time line. If we're just going to sit around on stakeout we may as well let the feds do it.''

‘‘Yea well…. What's your plan? Shove Jenny in the door and see if she freaks and let wonder women here lose another girlfriend.''

Jenny jerked at hearing the words; she turned her head slowly, meeting Marcus suddenly sorrowful eyes.

‘'I'm sorry Jen I…. I didn't mean that…. I….'' He swallowed hard. His eyes shifting to Shannon's ice still form.

Jane had had enough, she snorted in disgust. ‘'You're such an asshole.'' She pushed open the door, slamming it shut as she exited.

Jenny wasn't sure what hurt more the fact he actually thought she would freak or he'd just thrown Shannon's worst pain in her face. As she looked at him she knew which it was, anger welled up, she knew he saw it as he shifted back.

His eyes finally dropped unable to keep up the stare. ‘'I'll be outside.'' He pushed open the door, pausing. ‘'Sorry.'' He got out, closing the door.

Jenny finally turned to face front, exhaling, she looked sideways suddenly seeing how still Shannon was, her eyes dipped to the white knuckles holding the wheel in a death grip, she shifted forward, laying her hand over it. ‘‘Hey.''

Shannon blinked.

‘'Shannon you can let go now.'' She felt the fingers under her palm flex. ‘‘He didn't mean it.''

Shannon exhaled. ‘‘Then he shouldn't have said it.''

‘‘He's…. He's jealous.''

Blue eyes shot around. ‘'And that makes it okay?''

‘‘No of course not. What I'm trying to say is this is new for him. He…. Damn it.'' She pushed out at the anger, she didn't need this now. Slowly she took a cleansing breath. ‘'I'm not making excuses for him.''

‘‘Sounds like you are.''

Jenny eyes slipped closed. Shannon's voice sounded so much like a child's.

‘‘Well I'm not…. This isn't who he is and I know him well enough to know that right now he feels like shit.''

‘‘Yea, well he can join the club.''

Before Jenny had time to say anything, Shannon was gone from the car.

‘‘Fuck!'' Jenny smashed her hand into the dash board. Welcoming the sting of pain. ‘‘Just great. Marcus your timing sucks.'' Her eyes jumped widening as she saw Shannon head straight for the clinic. She opened the door, finding Jane by her side. ‘'What's she doing?''

Jane face shone her concern. ‘'I have no clue she told me to stay with you and wait.''

Marcus moved closer, faltering as Jane leveled her gaze on him. ‘'What's she doing?'' his eyes went to Shannon retreating figure into the clinic.

Jane shook her head. ‘'I don't know. She said for you two to be ready.''

His eyebrows rose. ‘'For what?''

Jenny moved to follow only to have Jane grabbing her arm.

‘‘We wait.''

Jenny looked down at it then back up. ‘‘Because she says so?''

Jane let go of her arm. ‘‘Yes. Trust her.''

All three jumped when the sound of a fire alarm echoed around them. Almost immediately people starting filtering out of the clinic, gathering in their designated fire position in the car park.

Jane smirked. ‘'Well guess that solves that problem.'' She looked to Jenny and Marcus. ‘'This is where you work your voodoo.''

Marcus couldn't help it, he grinned.

Jenny however was not finding it amusing. Her eyes searched through the gathering people.

Jane saw it. ‘‘Jen. She'll be fine. You need to do your thing. So this isn't wasted.''

Marcus nodded, moving away from them towards the people, letting his senses open.

Jenny took a breath, pushing away her worry. Closing her eyes at the assault of so many people filtered into her inner vision. Pushing past their concern and fear of fire, searching through them for any thread she recognized. She felt warmth near her back and knew Shannon was there. It made her focus more.

Jane watched in fascination, seeing the different emotions flick across Jenny's face. She could have sworn the smile that briefly appeared was because somehow Jenny had sensed Shannon's return. She twisted her head, hearing the distant sound of sirens. ‘'Boss?''

‘'I hear them, get in the car.''

Jane obeyed.

Shannon took a step closer to Jenny. ‘'We need to go.'' She kept her voice low, not wanting to spook her.

Jenny brought herself back, feeling exhausted at being in so many people's inner thoughts. Slowly her eyes opened, seeing Shannon's concerned gaze.


Jenny shook her head sadly. ‘‘He's not here.''

Marcus came over, rubbing his palm on his jeans. ‘‘Nothing here either. Sorry.'' He met Shannon's eyes.

She knew he was sorry for not just that. She nodded. ‘‘Okay. We need to go.''

They all heard the siren getting nearer. All three got into the car. Shannon pulled away as the fire engine came around the corner, screaming past them towards the clinic.

Marcus shot forward. ‘'Stop!''

Shannon slammed on the brakes, twisting to glare at him.

Marcus eyes were closed his hand up. Suddenly he pushed open the door, stepping to the sidewalk. His head shot around. ‘'Jen? You feel that?''

Jen quickly opened her senses, her brow creasing as she searched. There, distant, nothing, then something, something there. She psychically jerked, as she hit the thread of Poppies. Her inner mind grabbed on to it, pulling it forward so she could see. Her face contorted, it felt like the thread was resisting. Her sane mind told her that was impossible. She concentrated harder, pushing all other distractions away, locking on to it.

Marcus was circling, trying to catch it, his brow prickling in sweat. It was there, cold, blue.

Jane was sat opened mouthed, trying not to laugh at the ridiculous spectacle in front of her of Marcus dancing in circles. She looked down as she felt bud rest his chin on her knees. Seeing his fur ripple. ‘'Easy boy.'' She stroked him, wondering if it was to calm him or herself. Her eyes went back to Marcus.

Shannon felt her skin crawl. She kept silent, watching Jenny in fascination, almost as if she was glowing.

Marcus knew he was losing it, he knelt touching the ground. ‘'Come on damn it.''

Bud whimpered again, his eyes on Jenny.

Jenny's breathing was shallow. It was resisting, she tightened her focus, grabbing at the thread with imaginary hands, pulling it closer to her. It hissed, twisting, turning on her, and as it turned it became the Snake bearer, twisting snakes aiming at her with fangs. She tried to back away in her mind. They struck out again. Unaware her arms came up and she screamed.

Shannon jumped so hard she banged her head on the interior roof.

Jane instinct was to go for her gun.

Shannon instinct was to grab Jenny. ‘'JENNY.''

Jenny felt the warmth engulf her, shattering the attack. She froze, the snakes froze, everything inside her senses froze. Jenny pushed past the fear, watching the snake bearer begin to fade to be replaced with blue, cold and then disappears into the mists of the essence to nothing.

Shannon felt the tremble go through Jenny, she gathered her closer. ‘‘You're freaking me out here you know how much I hate that.''

Jenny pulled her battered senses back, letting Shannon's voice guide her, hearing the panic from the detective made her hurry. She gripped Shannon's arm. ‘'I'm…. I'm okay.''

Jane exhaled her voice shaking. ‘‘Well I'm not. I think I pissed myself. What the fuck just happened?''

Jenny gave a small laugh hearing Jane's humor steadied more of her shattered nerves. ‘'Where's Marcus?''

Jane's eyes shot outside, widening as she saw Marcus lying flat out on the ground. ‘‘Holy crap.'' She bolted out of the car, kneeling checking his pulse. His face was ashen.

Jenny turned her head, moving to get out.

Shannon tightened her hold. ‘‘No. Jane will deal with it. Just rest a sec….'' Her attention went to Jane. ‘‘How is he?''

‘‘Out cold, but his pulse is okay.'' Jane rose about to go for one of the bottles of water, she stopped as bud came over and began to lick Marcus's face, whining.

‘‘Ugh. Stop kissing dog breath.''

Jane let out a sigh of relief. ‘‘He's fine boss.''

Bud snorted in disgust, continuing to wash his face.

Marcus sat up. ‘'What the hell happened?'' he ran a hand over his face, feeling the worst headache in his life.

Jenny lent into Shannon, letting out her on relief breath. ‘‘It was him.''

Shannon's eyes shot down to her, then around the area. ‘'What? He's here?''

‘‘No.'' she fell silent, trying to work out exactly what had happened.

Shannon felt the withdrawal, she held on to Jenny tighter. ‘'You two get back in the damn car.''

Marcus started to rise, surprised when Jane offered him a hand, he took it pulling himself up. ‘‘Thanks.''

‘‘No worries. Glad you're okay.''

Before he could answer she turned and got back in the car.

He got in grateful for bud's attention, he reached down taking a bottle of water, well aware his hand was shaking as he opened it.

Jane looked at Jenny then at Marcus. ‘'Can either of you explain to me exactly what happened in terms I can understand?''

Marcus lent his head back, still trying to ease the headache. ‘'I felt it. The poppies. Then I lost it, then I guess I lost me.'' He snorted, drinking down half the bottled water in his hand.

Jenny smiled, she could feel Shannon running her fingers through her hair, knowing Shannon didn't know she was doing it. She gave herself over to the guilty pleasure of a moment, then begruduenly she pushed away.

Shannon sighed, moving back to her own seat. ‘'You said it was him?''

Marcus sharply looked over to Jenny. ‘'You saw him?''

‘‘Not exactly. I felt the poppies like you did. I focused on it, pulled it closer.'' She swallowed hard. ‘‘The damn thread turned into the snake bearer exactly like in the image. Snakes….'' She shivered. ‘‘They…. They attacked me.''

Jane shivered too, she hated snakes. ‘‘Is that normal?''

Jenny turned to her and burst out laughing. ‘‘No.''

Jane frowned. ‘‘Hey.''

Jenny bit her lip. ‘‘I'm sorry. No. It isn't normal for a thread I'm following to suddenly turn into snakes. In fact I've never heard of it happening ever to a psychic of any kind.''

Marcus swore under his breath.

Shannon looked at him. ‘'What?''

He shook his head.

‘'What?'' Shannon repeated.

‘‘He laid a trap. Used the poppies. I only just caught it, it was different, I couldn't figure it out. They weren't around me, they were inside me. He was hunting. He used me….'' He swallowed, his eyes going to Jenny.

Jenny breath caught realizing what he was getting at. ‘'God.''

Shannon looked to them trying to understand. ‘‘Hunting for what?''

‘‘For Jenny…. He knows he has some sort of sense, he was testing to see how strong it was, and he used it to see if Jenny did. If she really is a psychic…. If….'' He swallowed hard. ‘'…. If she real is a threat.''

All eyes went to Jenny. She sagged back into the seat. ‘'Well he got his answer…. I am.'' She felt her skin prickle in cold sweat.

Jane wasn't sure when she started believing but right now she did. ‘'how close does he have to be to do this?''

Marcus blinked at her, surprised at the question form a disbeliever. ‘'I don't know…. He looked over at the front seat. ‘' Jen?''

Jenny shook her head. ‘'I don't know either. I've never heard of this before. Not on this scale at least. He has to know how to focus it. Focus so hard he can search out, search you out. He saw you at the park, so he assumed you were a link to me.'' She shook her head almost in disbelief at the focus that would take. ‘‘He'd have to focus everything. I know I couldn't do this.''

Shannon was thinking, trying to come up with some protection for this, but how the hell was she supposed to protect against an attack of Jenny's mind. ‘‘He knows focus…. He does it all the time when he kidnaps, when he kills, it isn't much of leap for him to use it this way is it?''

Jenny realized she was right. ‘'No…. Jesus. Thank god he didn't know he had this before.''

Shannon looked at her.

‘‘Shannon, image someone who can go into your mind and show you your worst fears.''

Jane spat. ‘‘Who says he didn't do it before? They're no marks on the bodies remember, maybe he tortured their minds, drove them nuts. That's how he got his power high jollies.''

Jenny smiled at the fact Jane spoke her thoughts, spoke what she saw and once again hit the nail on the head.

Jane looked up to see everyone staring at her. ‘'What?'' All three smiled. She scratched the back of her neck. ‘'I did it again didn't I. Solved something.''

Shannon nodded, she sat back, facing front, running her hand through her hair, wincing as she hit the bruise there. ‘'So what now? Do we still look for him the normal way?''

‘‘Yes.'' Jenny felt raw.

Shannon started the car. ‘'We'll do it tomorrow. Let's get back to Marcus's place and regroup.'' She felt her inside settle at the thought of going somewhere safe.

Jenny's voice was small. ‘‘No.'' she knew everyone was looking at her again. She took a deep breath. ‘‘We don't have time to keep stopping. For one I'd image that's what this little exercise of his wants. I'm not running away again. He can't get in now. I won't fall for the same trick twice.''

Marcus bit back his anger and wanting to get her the hell away from here. ‘'She's right. We need to keep going.''

Jenny turned giving him a smile of thanks.

Shannon gritted her teeth and her own impulse to run for the hills. ‘‘Right. Jane where's next.''

Jane was caught flat footed, she looked around for the file, only to have Marcus wave it in front of her. She took it. ‘‘Fine. You all realize you're as nuts as each other don't you.''

Marcus snorted. ‘‘Welcome to bedlam, I hope you brought your jammies.''

She rolled her eyes, chuckling. ‘‘Don't wear um.''

Marcus grinned. ‘'Oooooooooooh.''

She ignored him, but couldn't help the grin on her face. ‘'Lexus clinic. Five miles south, keep on this road then take a left boss.''

Jenny laughed at them, she knew it was insane after what she'd just gone through but she couldn't help it. All of them were shook up, humor was a defense. She could even hear it in Jane's voice. She looked across at Shannon seeing the same amusement on her lips.

Shannon turned her head, sensing the gaze. They're eyes held, then she broke it turning her attention to the road. They'd all go nuts together.


Shannon closed the car door, waiting for the others. Jane drew next to her.

‘'You going to do the fire alarm again?''

‘‘No. I don't want to start a trend that attracts attention.'' She looked past Jane to Jenny and Marcus who were hugging.

‘'what made you do that anyway?''

‘'I was angry. Didn't think about it, just walked in and it came to me.''

‘‘Ahuh. Well it was better than shooting Marcus anyway. That close in a car gets messy.''

Shannon smiled. ‘'I thought so too.''

Jane snorted, her eyes going to Marcus. ‘'I can't figure him out. One minute he's an asshole of the biggest degree and the next his almost charming.''

Shannon shifted her gaze to study Jane, almost smiling at what she saw, Jane was attracted to him. She had to look down. ‘‘Yea.'' She coughed turning her attention to Jenny. ‘'You ready.''

Jenny pulled bud as she walked up to Shannon. ‘‘Ready for what?''

Shannon grinned, turning motion for Jenny to go first. ‘‘A tour.''

Jane chuckled, she knew Shannon had been up to something. ‘‘Might have known.''

Marcus ran to catch up. ‘‘Did I just hear her say tour?''

Jane fell into step behind Jenny and Shannon. ‘'Lexus is a research clinic. They give tours everyday at four.'' She looked down at her watch. Shaking her head. ‘‘We have five minutes before it starts.''

They entered the main entrance, all waiting as the inner glass doors opened. Jenny was keeping very close to Shannon, not really knowing what to expect.

Shannon took notice of the main two exits. Each guarded by a security. Her eyes rose to the cameras placed above the main desk. She moved walking the other side of Jenny, keeping her from the camera focus. She caught the movement of the other inner door opening, watching a women in her early twenties in a black dress suit approach them.

The woman smiled. ‘'Miss Matthews?''

Shannon nodded, extending her hand. ‘‘Yes. You must be Mrs. Curtis. I hope my office let you know I was going to be a little late?''

Marcus eyebrows shot up, he looked to Jane who had the same expression on her face.

Mrs. Curtis laughed, shaking the hand. ‘‘You're not late actually your right on time.'' Her gaze went over the others. ‘'I thought there was supposed to be more in your party?''

Shannon smiled again. ‘‘There were, but they have had to go on to two other clinics. I hope its okay, I mean the paperwork that was sent to you was for a team of eight?''

‘‘Not a problem. If you can just give me the names of who are in your team, I'll make the adjustment.''

Shannon knew everyone was looking at her. She pulled a typed list from her inside jacket pocket, handing it over.

Curtis smiled taking it. ‘'Just one moment.'' She headed to the security desk.

Jenny was finding herself impressed yet again, she moved closer to Shannon, keeping her voice low. ‘'When did you arrange this Miss Matthews.''

Shannon hid her smile. ‘' Last night. I called in a favor. I knew this was on our list. I called earlier to confirm today, when I knew we were coming here.'' She watched as Curtis lifted the phone.

‘‘And you didn't tell us why?''

Shannon sighed, hearing the slight accusation. ‘‘Because I'd hoped we would have found him before we came here. This facility is research only. It's scientists, there's no M.D.s on site.''

‘‘Then why are we here?'' Jenny irritation and not being told what was tempered a little.

They both fell silent, as Curtis came back.

‘‘All sorted. If each of you could wear these.'' She gave four Visitors ID's to Shannon.

Shannon pasted them out. ‘'Thank you.''

‘'Right, let's begin shall we.'' Curtis turned going to the door, looking to security, a buzzer sounded and she pulled it open, glancing back. ‘‘This is the main part of the Clinic.''

Shannon moved through, waiting for the others, as Mrs. Curtis moved away she lowered her mouth to Jenny's ear whispering, answering her earlier question. ‘‘Because I had a hunch.''

Jenny almost tripped over her feet.

Mrs. Curtis was beside her immediately. ‘‘Are you okay. I'm so sorry that was my fault. Miss Matthews told me you have problems with your sight. Otherwise we wouldn't have let your dog in I'm afraid. We'll be entering a sterile area during the tour.''

Jenny resettled her breath. Shannon's voice so close had thrown her for a loop. ‘‘No no. I'm fine thank you.'' She pulled bud closer to her, giving him the hand signal to move forward at her side. He fell into step.

When Mrs. Curtis had moved away, Jenny grabbed Shannon's arm tugging it. ‘'Behave yourself.''

Jane rolled her eyes.

Marcus found himself smiling.

Mrs. Curtis stopped, smiling, as she faced them. ‘'Right through these doors is the main research area. As you are all aware Lexus is an independent drug division of the United States government. Our job is to test and retest imported drugs from other countries of the world.''

They all nodded as if they understood.

Curtis continued. ‘'As we're all sadly aware unlicensed drugs are entering the market from orders placed on the Internet. Customs and excise are finding it highly difficult to stop unregistered companies from selling online and posting to resident address within the United States. Our job here is to randomly test packages, which have been sent, and check if the contents are firstly licensed and secondly if the drug is what it says it is. Of course you know all this….'' She laughed nervously. ‘'…. Your department of F.B.I. especially.''

Marcus's eyebrows nearly hit the glass roofing. Jane nearly bit through her gum. Jenny had to slam her hand over her mouth to keep from laughing. The only one who made a sound was bud, who sneezed.

All eyes turned to Shannon. She ignored them. ‘'No that's fine Mrs. Curtis. I'm finding this highly informative. Please act like this is just a tour. I told you this was just an unofficial visit to update my new team.''

Mrs. Curtis beamed. ‘‘Wonderful, come this way.''

Shannon followed her, well aware of the stares behind her.

Marcus tilted his head, then bent slight, looking at Shannon butt.

Jane looked at him, talking from the corner of her mouth. ‘'What are you doing?''

He straightened up. ‘‘Checking where she keeps her balls.''

Jane did a double take, then burst out laughing. Shutting up as blue eyes locked on her.

They moved through the facility. Moving from room to room. Listening to Mrs. Curtis explanation of everything. Jenny now was focused on extending her sense. She kept a close check on her senses, making sure he couldn't get in, unless she allowed it.

Marcus now was behaving, the serious situation, making him focus. He didn't like this place it was too clean, he was barely getting a sense of anything. He became aware of Jane beside him, guarding him, it made him smile.

Shannon was running interference with Mrs. Curtis, making sure her attention was on her, so the others could do their thing. She was chit chatting with her, when a door to the west caught her eye. ‘'What's through there?''

Curtis stopped momentarily surprised. ‘‘Oh. That's the research division. I'm afraid the normal tour doesn't allow us to go there?''

Shannon stopped walking, aware that the others we're looking to the door as well. ‘'Research?''

‘'yes. We also have division here they does testing for new products on the market and of course any drugs which are seized in raids have to be identified.'' Mrs. Curtis frowned. ‘'You know we do.''

Shannon realized her error. She laughed easily. ‘' I know you do. I just didn't know it was done there.''

Mrs. Curtis relaxed. ‘‘Well. I'm afraid if you wish access. I'm going to have to make this an official visit and ask for your supervisor to send me the paperwork.''

Shannon smiled. ‘'I might just do that for next time if I may. Today we have two others to see.''

Mrs. Curtis smiled back. ‘' Of course.''

Jenny was staring at the room, she took a small step towards it. ‘'Mrs. Curtis. Can I ask what types of drugs are usual in there?''

Mrs. Curtis came over. ‘‘It depends, sometimes a raid will being us type one class drugs, while other times it can be no more than cannabis. At the moment we have three or four different new drugs under testing.''

Jenny opened her sense a little more, there was something there…. Faint. But emanating from the room beyond the door.

Shannon felt the hairs go up, knowing what Jenny was doing. She saw Curtis studying Jenny curiously. Shannon stepped between them, bringing Curtis attention back to her. ‘‘You said research. What kind?''

Mrs. Curtis thought for moment, wondering if talking about it was breaking any rules, then she shrugged her smile returning. ‘‘Mostly we check interaction with other drugs. Side effects.''

Jenny took a slow breath, opening further. She felt it, cold, ice, blue. Clinical. She spoke out loud. ‘‘Poppies.''

Mrs. Curtis looked around to her in surprise. ‘‘Yes. We deal with opiates.''

Marcus eyes sprung wide. That's why he didn't like this place, it reminded him of the feeling he got when he felt the poppies. Clinical a clinical environment. Surrounding the killer all the time, not something he saw, not something he looked at, but something he dealt with everyday.

Which seeped into his skin, which he carried without knowing? ‘‘That's it.''

Mrs. Curtis looked at him in alarm. ‘‘Excuse me.''

Shannon took a step next to Jenny.

Jenny's eyes opened. ‘‘He's here.''

Shannon felt her stomach drop. She turned to Mrs. Curtis, well aware of the confused look on the woman's face. ‘'Do you employ M.D.s here?''

Curtis blinked in surprise. ‘'I'm sorry.''

Shannon kept her panic under control. ‘‘You said you checked for side effects, is that monitored by an M.D.? Do you hire them in?''

‘‘Well no. We don't bring in M.D.s, most of our scientists have a medical degree.''

Shannon swallowed hard, seeing Jenny pale. ‘'What?''

Jenny stepped back, pulling bud with her. ‘'He knows I'm here.'' She'd only just managed to shut down her sense as she felt the snakes again.

Shannon looked around. ‘'Damn it.''

Mrs. Curtis smile fell. ‘‘What's going on?''

Shannon eyes scanned the expanse of hall around them.

Everyone turned as the door to the west opened.

A tall man handsome blonde man came out, stopping to stare at them. His eyes as blue as Shannon's, his face broke into a grin as his eyes leveled on Jenny.

Bud started to growl.

The growl pulled Shannon from her shock of knowing this was him. She didn't know how she knew she just knew, her gut told her. In one swift movement, she pulled Jenny behind her, pulling her gun free, well aware of the scream of alarm from Mrs. Curtis, who took off down the hallway. She knew Jane had pushed Marcus out the way.

Shannon leveled her gun at him. ‘'POLICE. DON'T MOVE.'' She saw Jane take up the same stance next to her.

He raised his arms, still grinning. His eyes locked on Jenny. He seemed oblivious of anyone else.

‘'TURN AROUND FACE THE DOOR. HANDS BEHIND YOUR HEAD.'' Shannon took a step closer.

He instead took a step closer to her.


His grin widened. He ignored Shannon speaking to Jenny. ‘‘Hello. I've dreamt of you.''

Jenny swallowed hard. Just managing to keep bud from leaping forward, all his hackles were up.

Shannon stepped into his line of sight, seeing him frown, trying to see around her. ‘'LISTEN TO ME. YOUR UNDER ARREST TURN AROUND AND FACE THE GOD DAMN DOOR.''

His eyes darkened, looking right at her. She swallowed hard as she felt her skin crawl.

‘'I'm talking to Miss Newton.''

‘‘The hell you are.'' Shannon took another step towards him, then her hairs all stood on end.


Shannon cursed, taking a glance over her shoulder to find four armed security officers with their guns leveled at her and Jane. Her eyes went back to the man at by the door, seeing him grin, amusement dancing in his eyes. He chuckled.

Jane was looking at Shannon now unsure of what the hell to do. ‘'boss?''

Shannon gritted her teeth, this was turning into a god damn farce. She looked over her shoulder again. Making eye contact with the security officer who spoke. ‘'I'm Detective Rhymes' keys Pd. I'm here on official business. That man is the tooth fairy. I'm here to arrest him.''

The security mans eyes widened going to the man he recognized by the door. ‘'Dr Steward? You got to be kidding me.''

Mrs. Curtis squeaked from the end of the hall, yelling. ‘'She's lying she told me she was from the F.B.I. her name is Matthews.''

Shannon cursed, seeing the security guard level his gun again. ‘'Wait! I've got my badge in my back pocket.''

Jenny was oblivious to it all, her eyes were fixed on him, he was taking this all in great amusement, as if sensing her gaze he looked at her again, his grin widening. She shivered, her skin was crawling, she could hear him whispering to get into her mind. Bud lurched forward, which startled him enough for to give Jenny time to slam the wall shut on him. She felt sick.

Bud growled again, he really didn't like this man, he pulled harder, almost over balancing Jenny. She yanked him back. ‘'Bud!''

Everyone's attention went to bud, including guns.

Shannon yelled seeing all the security men level their weapons on him. ‘‘Hey!''

Their weapons came around to her again. Shit. ‘'okay. We have to calm down here. Get my badge, make the damn call. Before something stupid happens.''

The security guard looked uncertain, he'd been trained in terrorist attacks. ‘‘Lower your gun first, then we'll check.''

Shannon swore, she didn't blame the security they were doing what they were trained to do. ‘'Take him into custody first. Then I'll lower my gun.''

The security guard eyes narrowed. ‘'I don't take orders. Lower yours. I'm not asking again.'' His shoulders tensed.

Shannon looked back at Dr Steward seeing the very amused look on his face.

Turning her head to see the fear in Jenny's eyes, then to Jane who was looking much the same, to Marcus who was knelt behind the white sofa.

‘'Shannon?'' Jenny's voice was a plea, she knew how quickly this could all turn bad.

‘‘Excuse me?''

Shannon's eyes shot to Steward. ‘'Shut up.''

He smiled. ‘'Jeff. Maybe it would be easier, if you just arrested me. This woman seems to think I'm a threat. I don't want anyone getting hurt over a misunderstanding.''

His voice was so sincere Shannon felt sick, realizing why and how easily those victims had fallen for it, why they trusted him.

The security guard, moved around Shannon keeping his weapon level on her. ‘'That won't be necessary Dr Steward. We got everything under control. You just stay back there.''

Steward stepped back smiling. ‘'Whatever you say Jeff.''

Shannon finger was itching, it would so easy to wipe the smile off his face. So easy to kill him, stop the killings, stop the threat to Jenny. Her body tensed.


Shannon froze, just like she did that day in the house when she was going to throw the F.B.I. asshole out of the house. Even then Jenny had read her mind. Her eyes came around to terrified ones.

‘‘Please don't.'' Jenny's hand gripped harder to bud's lead.

The security guard had also tensed. ‘‘Look lady. I don't know what you think you're here for. But if you don't drop your fucking weapon right now I'm going to make you. One way or the other.''

Shannon inhaled, closing her eyes, then she slowly let her body relax, nodding to Jane. ‘'Stand down.'' She relaxed her finger on the trigger, letting the gun slip forward so she only held it at the butt.

The security guard stepped forward immediately, grabbing it, shoving Shannon to her knees.

Jenny winced seeing Shannon's man handled. ‘‘Hey''

Shannon looked at her. ‘'Stop. Its okay.''

Jenny clenched her teeth, looking across to see Jane being giving the same treatment. ‘'What she says is true, she's a cop.''

They ignored Jenny, pulling Shannon's hands behind her back, slipping on the plastic tag cuffs.

Shannon gritted her teeth, to the pinch of pain, looking up at the security officer. ‘'Now get my damn fucking badge and make the damn fucking call!''

He blanched. Nodding to one of his men, who stooped pulling the badge from Shannon's back pocket, handing it over.

The security man looked at it, frowning. It looked real, but so did half of 911's credentials.

Shannon read his thoughts. ‘'If I was a terrorist would I be after him? Make the call.'' She saw Dr Steward cross his arms and smirk. She quickly read the security man's nametag. ‘'Barrow.''

He looked down at her.

‘'Stop turning your back on that man. He is the tooth fairy so arrest him. I've done what you've asked.''

He looked over his shoulder at Dr Steward. ‘'I've known him for twelve years, you've so got the wrong man.''

Shannon gritted her teeth. ‘'I don't give a shit if you shared a playpen with him. Do your job.''

He tensed, looking down at her again. ‘'You've got some nerve coming in here armed and giving me orders.''

Jenny looked across to Marcus, seeing him rise, his eyes were fixed on Steward, Jenny turned, surprised to find him moving closer. ‘'Shannon.'' She stepped back, almost smacking into a security guard, who looked at her in surprise, wondering if he should be holding her.

Shannon heard the scared plea. She jerked her head around Barrow. Seeing what had caused Jenny to back off. ‘'STOP RIGHT THERE.''

Barrow jumped, swirling around, walking towards him. ‘'Dr Steward. I think you need to stay back.''

Steward stopped. ‘‘Oh I'm sorry.'' He took a step back. ‘‘It's just I thought for a moment I recognized her.''

Barrow looked back. ‘'The one claiming she's a cop?''

‘‘Hmmm. Yes. I think so.''


Steward smiled. ‘‘Well I don't want to piss her off.'' He took a further step backwards.

Shannon tensed, seeing the security guard walk closer, she shot a look to the other three who were covering Jane and her. Shit. ‘'Don't trust him.'' She pulled at her plastic cuffs.

Jenny was edging closer to Shannon, only to be stopped by a security guard. ‘'I think you need to sit over there ma'am.'' He motioned to the couch near Marcus. Jenny nodded, making her way there, pulling a reluctant bud, past Shannon.

Shannon felt it the prickling in her gut. Watching as Jenny past her towards Marcus. Bud looking at her in worry. She whispered to bud. ‘'Guard her now!''

His body stilled, his eyes coming up, she swore she saw understanding there.

Barrow looked back at them. ‘'She a patient or something.''

Steward grinned, dipping his head, lowering his voice, making barrow do the same leaning into him.

Shannon saw it. ‘'NOOOOOO.''

Barrow looked up surprised.

It was all the distraction Steward needed, he reached across grabbing Shannon's gun out of Barrows hand, firing one shot straight into Barrow's left eye, before he had time even to react, skull and brain exploded outward as he flew back. Steward turned leveling the gun, firing three shots in rapid success, each one hitting their target dead on. The three security men fell.

Marcus jumped, throwing himself flat.

Bud turned, jumping up at Jenny, sending her sprawling backwards, Marcus saw it he scrambled quickly grabbing Jenny, pulling her behind the end of the couch, shoving bud between them, covering them both.

Jane dived sideways.

Shannon rolled.

Steward kept walking forward, firing another shot at a distant running Mrs. Curtis, who with a cry crumpled to the ground.

The room echoed the sounds, then gently they recoiled away, leaving silence and the scent of gunpowder and blood.

Shannon had pushed herself straight ready to run at him, only to find the gun end under her chin and pushing her head back.

Jenny saw it, she pushed at Marcus. ‘‘No!''

Steward's eyes went to her, his grin returned.

Jane was ready to spring.

His eyes shifted to her. ‘'I wouldn't advise it.'' His voice was cold.

Jane slowly lowered herself back down.

His attention went back to Shannon. ‘'You are an annoyance.''

Shannon swallowed, feeling the cold of steel digging in her throat. ‘‘So I've been told. But I am a cop and it won't be long before there is a lot more annoyances around you.''

His mouth twitched. ‘'Are you trying to play for time?'' he studied her. ‘'I think you are. If you're worried about the gunshots don't be. This place is sound proofed. If you're worried about interruptions don't be. We had a four-man security team. You were nice enough to being those. As for staff? I'm the only one that uses this wing on a Wednesday. As for your back up…. I heard you went rogue.'' His smile extended.

Shannon swallowed. Shit. He suddenly knew a whole lot about her. ‘'You can't get away with this now.''

He laughed, standing straight pulling the gun away. ‘'I just did.''

Shannon watched him. Did he really think that? With a jolt she realized he did.

‘'you can't expect to walk away from here. They'll figure it out.''

He crossed his arms, his eyes going to Jenny again. ‘'hmmm. The brains of the outfit.''

Jenny swallowed, holding tightly to bud who was about ready to gnaw through his lead.

‘'Bud! Down.''

Jenny was surprised the command had come from Shannon, she looked down at him as he lay down. His eyes locked on steward.

Shannon let out a sigh of relief that he'd obeyed, she knew steward would have just shot him if he was a threat, she needed him alive.

Steward smirked at the dog, making sure he didn't get to close. He gave Marcus a look, then pointed for him to sit by Shannon. Marcus rose, almost tempted to fight, then he caught Shannon's shaking head, with a grunt he went and sat next to her.

‘'You don't mind if I tell you to put the dog over there too do you.''

Jenny stilled.

He smiled again. ‘'I'd hate to have to shoot him.''

Jenny looked up at him, she shivered under his glare. She rose, pulling bud with her, handing him to Marcus.

Bud didn't want too. He needed to be with Jenny.

Shannon pushed at him. ‘'sit. Stay.'' She muttered the rest. ‘'for now.''

He lay down.

Shannon wished she could get her hands free, she hated the fact he was so close to Jenny.

Jenny returned to the couch, sitting, folding her arms. Concentrating all her will power to keep him out of her head, she could feel him trying to get in.

‘‘You intrigue me…. Little one.''

She looked at him, keeping her fear out of her eyes.

‘‘You solved them didn't you? All my little clues.''



‘'I like puzzles.''

He grinned. ‘‘So do I. doesn't explain how you solved them?''

She relaxed slightly, knowing his psyche helped. ‘‘You left them to be solved.''

He blinked, moving to take a seat next to her, looking her up and down.

‘'You are not what I expected.'' He sounded confused.

Jenny shifted a little away. ‘‘Did you have a picture of your nemesis.''

He sat back, crossing his legs. ‘‘A hawk.''

She almost did a double take. ‘'Excuse me?''

He laughed. ‘'I saw you as a hawk. In my dreams. But I got your eyes right. Those are the same. Hunters eyes.''

Marcus shifted a little closer to Shannon, keeping his gaze firmly fixed on Jenny and Steward.

Shannon looked down feeling the nudge to her leg, her eyes checked they weren't being watching, dipping to Marcus's hand which had slightly lifted his t shirt exposing the gun on his hip. She looked Marcus right in the eye as he turned to look at her, she shook her head.

He tensed, then relaxed, knowing she meant not yet.

Steward attention came around to them. ‘'Don't get to cozy. You.'' He leveled the gun on Marcus. ‘'….Over there.''

Marcus rose, pulling bud with him, moving to the spot ordered. Sitting again his back to the wall. He swallowed hard as he found himself right next to one of the dead security men, he turned away as he saw what was left of the man's face.

Steward relaxed back again, smiling to Jenny. ‘'You have upset my plans you know.''

‘‘Yes I can imagine I have.''

His smile eased. ‘‘You're not afraid of me. Why? Everyone else is.'' He waved the gun at the others.

Hearing that gave Jenny a small sense of triumph, he couldn't read her. It steeled her resolve. ‘'I understand you.''

His eyes narrowed. ‘'You think so do you.''

She quickly corrected. ‘'I mean, I understand the part of you, you wanted me too. Like the puzzles.''

His eyes lost their coldness. ‘‘You still haven't told me how you solved them, when most of the F.B.I. didn't have a clue.''

Shannon frowned, so did Jane.

Jenny took a breath, gathering her thoughts, she needed to keep him talking, when he was they were alive. ‘'Actually they beat me…. But my first clue to breaking them was the nickel.''

He grinned. ‘' E Pluribus Unum.''

She managed to smile. ‘'Out of many one. Yes.''

‘'I'm glad you didn't fall for that stupid tooth fairy tag.''

She almost jerked as his anger cascaded around her. ‘'No. I ruled that out very quickly.''

‘‘Hmmm.'' His gaze shifted to the three watching them. ‘'This must be all very boring for you Detective?''

Shannon resisted the urge to tell him to go to hell. Instead she kept silent.

He laughed. ‘'I'm impressed, I'd heard your temper usual got the better of you.''

Jane looked sideways at Shannon, seeing she was wondering the same thing. Where this guy got so much information.

Jenny cleared her throat, needing to get his attention back to her. ‘'Can I ask a question?''

His eyes came around to her, he nodded.

‘'Why the ecliptic?''

He looked like he wasn't going to answer, then he relaxed, shrugging. ‘'Why not.''

Jenny studied him, trying to see if he was joking. ‘'I'm afraid I'm going to have to call you a liar on that answer.''

Shannon stiffened.

He didn't his head went back and he roared with laughter. Making everyone jump as the sound echoed around the hallway, making it sound macabre.

Jane took the distraction to look around, glancing over her shoulder she spotted the security guide who had cuffed her, her eyes raked over his body, spotting the pen knife hanging from his key chain on his black belt. Her eyes went back to the killer, seeing his gaze was firmly locked on Jenny. She slowly eased herself back to sit on her butt, freeing her legs from under her.


She froze, looking right at him. ‘'I've got cramp.''

‘‘Like I care. You move again, you won't have to worry about it.''

Making one last move she shifted back, more then was necessary, only stopping when she felt the edge of the body, she stilled, sitting now fully on her behind. ‘'I won't move again.''

His jaw twitched his eyes angry that she'd moved again.

Jenny saw it. She knew she had to do something. She shifted forward into his line of sight. ‘'Dr Steward. Why the number thirteen?''

He blinked, his eyes boring into Jane, then as if not giving her another thought he sat back, turning to Jenny. ‘'Why do you think?''


He smiled in surprise. ‘'Well that would be refreshing. Go ahead.''

‘'Simply, you like the number, it's always meant something to you.''

His smile twitched, turning into a grin. ‘'Ahuh. Always have. Lucky thirteen.''

Jenny internally exhaled, she'd guessed.

Jane kept her gaze ahead, while her hands were reaching back, searching with fingertips. She swallowed hard as she felt the warm sticky substance she knew to be blood, but it helped her know where her hand was, she was too high. She moved them down, feeling along, hitting the belt buckle, knowing to go left, her fingers fell on the key chain. She could feel the tingling in her fingers, knowing the blood supply was getting cut off, it made it harder to grab at the chain as her fingers began to go numb. Her fingers met what she wanted, her thumb and finger held the pen knife steady, while using her middle finger nail to probe at the edge until she felt the indent, she pushed at it. Cursing under her breath as her nail slide across. She stretched her fingers out, trying again, catching the indent this time until slowly it started to pull the blade free. She stilled as his eyes came around to her.

Shannon wasn't sure what Jane was doing but she could tell by Jane's eyes it was something that could get her killed. ‘'You know something Dr Steward, I have a question.''

Jane exhaled as his focus shifted to Shannon, she went back to her task, opening the pen blade fully.

‘'Do you think I care if you have a question or not. The only reason I haven't blown your head off is it would upset Miss Newton.''

Shannon didn't flinch as the gun was aimed at her again. ‘'I do know that.''

Jane eased a little back, making it look like she was relaxing, but her hands now were moving, bringing the blades edge against the plastic cuff. She began moving the penknife against it in slow movements. Hoping to god it was sharp.

He lowered the gun, curious. ‘'What's the question? You get one, so make it good.''

‘‘We're you a doctor first, or did you go into it because of Ophiuchus and the connection with Ascelpisis?''

His eyebrow rose. ‘'My…. My you're not just a pretty face.''

She wondered if he would answer her, she was well aware he was thinking over whether to just kill her.

He lowered the gun. ‘'I am who I am.''

Shannon resisted the urge to roll her eyes. ‘'So, you don't know which came first.''

His eyes hardened. ‘'Be careful Detective.''

Jenny clenched both hands, grabbing her jeans. Sending Shannon a warning look to not push him too far.

Shannon shrugged at him. ‘'You're going to kill us all anyway. I haven't really got a lot to lose by asking things. I guess I'm just a curious soul.''

The smile that came to his face made her insides cringe.

‘‘Oh, you think you haven't got anything to lose except your life?''

Jane almost stopped working on the plastic cuff, his voice had changed totally.

Jenny shot her eyes to him.

Shannon couldn't help herself she flinched back as he moved over her.

‘'Your one of those stupid self sacrificing cops aren't you.''

He grabbed her hair, jerking her head back to look up at him.

Bud rose, a deep growl rumbling through him.

He kicked backwards, his foot connecting hard into bud's chest, he yelped, leaping up, snapping at the already retreating leg. Marcus had to use all this strength to stop him getting away from him.

Steward turned his head staring right at Marcus. ‘‘Keep him under control or I'll kill you both now.''

Jenny gritted her teeth, terrified of what he was going to do to Shannon, but she quickly saw bud was more at risk. ‘'Bud. Down!''

Bud stopped struggling, whining in-between his growl, limping as he moved back to lie down.

Steward eyes came back around to Shannon. ‘‘Maybe I should just kill you all now. Except for Miss Newton of course. Her, I can find more interesting things to do with.'' His eyes went to Jenny, raking over her whole form.

Shannon struggled, well aware what a look like that meant.

His eyes came back to her, a sneer forming. ‘'Still think all you got to lose is your life?'' he twisted her hair, seeing tears forming in her eyes, but impressed she still made no sound. He jerked her head back more, increasing the pressure on the angle of her neck, as she didn't answer. ‘'Well?''


He released her hair, rising, patting her cheek, laughing as she tore her face away and gave him a look that could have killed. ‘'Smart girl.''

Jenny let out her held breath. She sat straight as his eyes locked on her again. She couldn't help sitting back as he approached.

‘'What do you think? Should I kill them? Get it over with?''

She stared at him, he was seriously asking her. She wet her dry lips. ‘'No.''

He frowned. ‘'Give me one reason other than you wouldn't like it?''

Jane started working in earnest on the plastic tag against the blade, tensing as she felt it slip and slice into her wrists.

‘'They could be useful.'' Jenny's mind was trying to think of something that would mean anything to him, knowing deep down nothing would, he would do it on a whim.

He shook his head disappointed. ‘'Useful for what? Hostages?'' He sighed, moving back towards Shannon. ‘'No one's coming. I know the protocol for this facility if it becomes under attack. Lock down, contain the situation, then notify the F.B.I. and I'm afraid that was Jeff's job.'' His eyes went to the body by the door. ‘‘He never did follow protocol.'' He turned looking right at Jenny. ‘'The only guards left in this place are the two on the main exit. Jeff seems to have brought both of the guards who kept watch on the surveillance room. So,'' He looked at all of them. ‘'No one's coming. Sorry.''

Shannon wanted to kick Jeff even if he was dead. Idiot.

He neared Jenny again. ‘'So I ask again. Give me a reason not to kill them?''

Jenny felt like crying. ‘'I can't. Whatever I say you'll do what you want anyway.''

He grinned, his hand coming up to touch her cheek, aware of the flinch she gave. ‘'So beautiful. I'm going to enjoy you very much.''

‘‘Leave her alone.'' Shannon's temper was snapping. She rose up onto her knees. Sending Marcus a look, then the same look to Bud.

They both knew what it meant.

Jane shifted her gaze to her, seeing the tell tale signs of Shannon about to do something really stupid. She worked harder on the plastic tie, feeling it give.

‘'Shannon don't.'' Jenny felt herself shake, her skin was crawling where his fingertips rested. ‘'Please don't.''

‘'I'd listen to her Shannon. She really is all that's standing between you and a bullet to the head.''

‘'What's the point. As you said you're going to do it anyway. I'm not playing your game anymore.'' She shifted, pushing up from her knees, swaying as her balance offset, now she was standing.

Jenny wanted to scream at her.

Marcus, slowly eased his hand around the back of him, pulling the gun free, with his other hand he unclipped bud's lead. Seeing his eyes come to him. Marcus mouthed. ‘'Wait.''

Bud licked his chops, settling back down, his eyes going back to the man.

Marcus relaxed, seeing bud understood, he always knew he was a smart dog. He brought the gun down to the floor behind him, pushing the safety off. His eyes glued now to Shannon and her distraction.

Steward nostrils flared, he dropped his hand from Jenny, turning. ‘'Sit the fuck down.''

‘'Why, so I can be on my knees when you blow me away. I don't think so. If I'm going I'm going standing.''

His whole body shook, with two strides he was up in her face. She didn't have time to dodge the smack of the gun against the side of her face.

Jenny jerked, ready to rise. She stilled as she watched, Shannon stand straight again, spitting red from her mouth and smirk.

Bud flinched, growling, but he waited, waited for Shannon's command.

Marcus almost pulled the trigger shooting himself in the ass. He swallowed hard, waiting, trusting in Shannon.

Jane used the sound of metal meeting flesh to tense her wrists and snap the plastic holding them, she kept still, knowing she couldn't get to him yet.

Steward glared at her, his words forcing out through his clenched teeth. ‘'Sit! Down!''

Shannon relaxed her shoulders, putting her centre of balance onto the balls of her feet, judging the distance between them. She pushed her head forward, right into his. ‘'No.''

His eye twitched, he smirked stepping back, turning the gun on Jenny.

Shannon almost smiled, she saw that coming a mile away, she expected it, in fact she needed it. She hoped Jenny would understand what she had to do.

‘'Sit down Detective. I won't ask again.''

Jenny gulped, shifting her eyes from the barrel aimed at her eye, past it to Shannon. Seeing what was coming by the look in blue eyes that suddenly locked on her. Oh no . please no .

Shannon smiled, for a moment she saw his confused look. Then she launched herself forward, using the strength in her legs to aim at him.


Bud rose, a streaming movement of sleek muscle, a blur of leaping, flying mass, millions of years of evolutionary D.N.A readying his body for this moment. He was wolf, he was dog. He was protector.

Steward fired at the biggest threat, Shannon.

Shannon felt the bullet slam into her chest, stopping her memento forward, she jerked sideways, letting out a cry of pain as breath was robbed from her. She slammed into the floor.

Jenny rose, yelling, running towards the fallen figure. ‘Nooooooooo.''

Jane flipped back, lashing her leg out, slamming her boot hard into Stewards exposed knee. Throwing herself backwards as the gun came around to her.

Steward didn't have time to fire, he found his arm locked in razor teeth, tearing flesh as they dug deep. He screamed, slamming his free hand into the dog who wouldn't let go. He kicked, backing away, using his full force he slammed bud into the wall.

Jenny ducked past them, her focus on Shannon's still form. She skidded on the carpet, falling to her knees, scared to turn Shannon over. ‘'Oh god. Oh god.''

Steward screamed, trying to twist away, lifting bud off the ground. Bud grunted, but he didn't let go, he tore deeper, hating the taste of blood. He yelped as a kick caught him.

Jane scrambled backwards, searching for the security guards gun, finding it she turned, only to jerk as a shot rang out.

‘'Bud OFF!''

Bud let go obeying Marcus's command, scampering away, breathing hard, he hurt. He growled, his eyes locked on the man. He spat the blood and flesh from his mouth.

Steward looked down at his chest, his fingers coming up to feel around the wound. He slammed back as another bullet hit him, he looked across.

Marcus stepped closer, firing again. ‘'Die you son of bitch.''

Steward gave a weak grin as the last bullet hit the wall next to him. He coughed, then his eyes slipped closed as he slid down the wall into a heap.

Marcus moved closer about to fire again.

Jane moved quickly, placing her hand on Marcus's gun, pushing it down. She turned to Steward, kicking him in the leg as she approached her gun level at his head. She kicked his gun away, reaching down she felt the pulse at his neck. Exhaling in relief, she straightened. ‘'He's dead.''

Marcus let the gun fall from his hand, wiping at his face, almost missing because his hand was shaking so much. ‘'Thank fuck for that!''

Jane's eyes went past him. ‘‘Oh no.''

Marcus turned, swallowing so hard he was sure the room echoed it.

Jenny had pulled Shannon over, somehow managing to pull her onto her lap. Smoothing down a loose hair that had fallen across the ashen cold face. She didn't even know she was rocking. ‘'Shhh. It'll be okay. You'll see.''

Marcus wasn't sure what hit him more, Jenny's anguish or Shannon's blood which was spreading out around them both like scarlet blanket. To his artist eye, the whole scene was almost beautiful.

Jane pulled herself out of the shock, running over, kneeling, checking for a pulse. She exhaled with a cry. ‘'She's alive.''

Jenny didn't respond.

Jane touched her, grimacing at how cold the psychic was. ‘'Jenny. She's alive.'' She grabbed Jenny's hand placing it over the wound on Shannon's chest. ‘'press here. Hard!''

Jenny's eyes finally focused on her. ‘'Alive.'' Her voice was nothing but a croak.

‘‘Yes. Press!'' Jane rose, running down the hallway, needing a phone.

Bud limped over, placing his body along Shannon's licking at Jenny's hand.

Jenny let out a gasp, the tears finally breaking free full force. Smiling at bud. ‘'She'd be so proud of you.''

He licked her hand again. Moving closer over Shannon, not liking the coldness that spread over her. He whimpered.

Marcus came down behind Jenny. Stretching his legs either side of her, wrapping his body around her back, locking his arms around her waist. ‘'You hold on to her Jen and I'll keep a hold of you till she gets back.''

Jenny cried more, leaning forward, to rest her forehead against Shannon's, barely feeling her breath. Hearing how hard it was for her to breathe nearly made her throw up. ‘'Shannon. Don't go. I need you.''

Marcus tightened his grip, wishing Jane would hurry up.

Jenny calmed her thoughts seeking, searching. Trying to find Shannon's warmth, but there wasn't any, all there was, was cold. She cried harder, her emotions shattering her hold. She opened her eyes, grabbing Shannon to her harder, pushing down on the wound, knowing it was Shannon's life's blood that covered her. ‘'Please you promised.''

Marcus was crying too. He looked up as Jane came barreling back, one of the security guards hot on her heels, with another man in a white coat carrying a case. Jane stopped, kneeling, checking Shannon's pulse, sighing in relief. She'd thought she was too late, by the looks on Jenny's and Marcus face. ‘‘Paramedics are on their way.'' She moved back letting the white coated man kneel. ‘'This is Dr Shaw. He is a scientist here, he's also an M.D.''

He gave them a weak smile. ‘‘Been a while but I remember my training.'' He checked Shannon's pulse, then looked at the wound, his face paled. He swallowed, looking up, adding another weak smile. ‘' Miss. I need you to keep that pressure up. Okay?''

Jenny just nodded, she couldn't let go, she was scared too.

Jane stepped back, watching, feeling totally useless. She knew she was crying but she didn't care. She stiffened as Shannon's body convulsed.

‘'Shit. She's going into arrest. Get her flat. Hurry!''

All Jenny could remember were those words as hands tore Shannon from her arms. Marcus grabbed her harder as she tried to fight, tried to get to Shannon again.


Jenny felt the jolt to her soul. ‘'No. please no.''

“Again. Clearrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.''

Jenny jolted again.

“I'm losing her. Where the hell are the medics?'' He looked over to the defibrillator, hearing the beeping of the charge. He placed the paddles again. ‘'Clear.''

Jenny gasped as she jolted this time, feeling the electricity pass between their connection, stinging bees of pain laced her for a moment.

Then all was still.

The Dr Shaw looked over to her sadly. “I'm sorry.''

She saw the truth in his eyes. “No. Oh no.” Finally Jenny's mind broke as she felt Shannon's life essence slip away, leaving nothing but cold and emptiness.

Jenny screamed, and her mind took her somewhere safe, back into the darkness.


The End.


Yes there is a sequel. No I don't know when. So, hope you enjoyed this monster. Drop me a line I love to hear from you, good or bad.

Ladyhawke124@hotmail.com . Please name your emails with story title. Thank you. J


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