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Chaos fic: An indirect Proof (AU, 4b/9)

October 15th, 2012 (06:25 am)

feeling: indescribable

Post split from SECTION 3A because LJ is not my friend. Master post is still here


After a leak at an embassy overseas got messy, Higgins wanted answers. When Michael brought in his asset, Higgins wasn’t the only one who got what he was looking for.

Ray Bishop.

One of the founding members of the ODS.

Rick knew that his intelligence regarding an embassy leak was very important to their ongoing work at safeguarding national security, but all Rick could think about was how he finally might have found someone to help him figure out just what made the ODS tick.

If only it would ever be that easy.


At first glance, Ray Bishop was everything a good operative should be. Confident, clever, and capable.

But it all fell apart. He could talk the talk, but he couldn’t walk the walk. After a panic attack, Rick was forced to realize that maybe the ODS was the same way. The job just hadn’t caught up with them yet.

Maybe they’d given their best, but didn’t know how to walk away.

He wondered what his teammates would look like when they fell apart.

Then he thought about the man who’d sat in his desk, thought about the companions he’d described, and he wondered if maybe they already had.


Still, they pull out the mission. With help from Ray and Higgins, no less. Carson dragged him on a car chase, but finished the job himself.

“Hey!” Rick yelled as he ran to catch up with Carson, who was tying up their mark. “We were supposed to do this together.

Carson kneed the guy in the face, letting him fall to the ground with an oomph. He shrugged. “Easier this way,” he said. “Besides, you’re still the new kid.”

Rick glared at Carson, glared at the man on the ground. Just glared. “How am I ever supposed to become not the new kid if you never let me do any of the work.”

Carson grinned, ruffling his hair. “Beats me,” he said. “But really, it’s not my problem.”


In the end, Ray Bishop wasn’t a great spy and he wasn’t even a great person. But he was passable at both, and Rick wondered if that made him more like the rest of them than any of them would like to admit. The ODS was a team of misfits who played heroes against their will. Ray was in it for the excitement. Michael was too compulsive to stop. Casey had no other outlet for his skills. Carson seemed to lack the initiative to leave.

Rick wanted to do the right thing, and yet they said he was the weird one.

“I don’t know, kid,” Ray said, leaned back and shaking his head. “I’ve seen a lot of spies. And you just don’t got it.”

The others were watching, drinks in hand, bemused. There was a time he might have been goaded into arguing, but he knew better now. “You’re going to mock me?” he asked. “Really?”

Ray shrugged. “Just got to call it like I see it.”

Rick turned his eyes to the rest. “And you all agree with him?”

“Who are we to question such infinite wisdom?” Michael asked.

“Plus, he’s paying,” Carson said, finishing his drink and nodding toward the bar. “I never argue with the man footing the bill.”

“The first round,” Ray reminded him. He turned a look on Michael. “You’ve let your team get sloppy. Not exactly a legacy I’m proud of.”

Michael snorted. “Are you kidding?” he said. “When I cleared out your desk, I found your liquor stash.”

“Yeah, and then I helped him dispose of it,” Carson chimed in.

Casey touched his fingers together, watching as electricity sparked.

Rick laughed. “And you think I don’t have it,” he said, shaking his head.

“You’re a good kid and all,” Ray said. “But you aren’t like the rest of us. And I’m not sure you ever will be.”

The thing was, Rick thought maybe they were right.

He just wasn’t sure any of them actually believed that was a bad thing.


Later, Adele pulled him aside, eyes bright. “Look what I found,” she said, holding out the file.

Curious, Rick opened it and gaped. “Is that--?”

“Higgins,” she said. “With Ray Bishop.”

“They were partnered together?” Rick asked.

“More than that,” Adele said. “He was one of the original members of the ODS.”

Rick blinked, trying to come to terms with that. “Higgins? But he hates the ODS.”

“I know,” she said. “So I did a bit of poking and found out that Higgins had a falling out with the ODS.”

“Which is why he’s gunning for them now,” Rick realized, flipping through the rest of the file. There were pictures of Ray, other people he didn’t know. Then he saw pictures of Michael, and then of Casey and Simms.

“I know,” Adele said. “The file doesn’t say what the falling out was, but I can only guess it left a bad taste in his mouth.”

“Enough to hold a grudge all these years later,” Rick said, seeing his teammates. Smiling. Working. Together. Even in still photographs, they looked more alive. They looked complete, whole.

Then, he came across the last picture in the file. It was newer than the rest. Michael and Casey and Simms were easy to identify – but the fourth man was unknown to him.

He paused, pointing. “Who’s this?”

Adele peeked, shrugging. “I don’t know,” she said. “Must be a former member.”

“This isn’t that old,” Rick said.

“I don’t know a lot of the operatives from a few years back,” she said. “We had a different pool in Strategic Services.”

“But he was definitely a member,” Rick surmised, studying him more closely. He was taller, with a day’s worth of scruff on his chin. His brown hair was short and spiky, blue eyes bright, his mouth twitching upward in the faintest smile that made him seem eternally amused. He was in a gray suit with a matching vest, a tie slightly lax around his neck.

“This is their personnel file,” she said. “It’s pretty sparse on details, but the photos are all there.”

“But what about identities?” Rick asked, flipping the photo and looking for some kind of ID.

Adele shrugged. “Whatever’s there is all I’ve got,” she said.

Rick turned the picture back and looked at it again. Looked at his team, how much different they seemed. Physically maybe not much had changed, but everything about them just seemed different.


Pressing his lips together, he glanced toward Adele. “Do you think you can find out?” he asked.

“It matters that much to you?” she asked, surprised.

“I know it seems stupid,” he said. “But there’s something the ODS isn’t telling me.”

Adele regarded him critically. “We’re spies,” she said. “There are a lot of things we don’t tell people.”

“This is different,” he insisted. “Something happened to them – something that changed them. If I’m ever going to be a real part of the team, I have to know what that is.”

Otherwise he’d always be the odd man out. He’d always be the new guy. He’d always be the kid. He couldn’t spend his career being one step behind.

He needed to belong to be effective. He wanted to be part of the team.

He wanted what was in that picture.

Taking the file back, Adele shrugged. “Okay,” she said. “I’ll see what I can find out.”

Rick grinned. “Thanks,” he said, pecking her on the cheek.

“Well, don’t thank me yet,” she said. “Answers are hard to come by in the Agency. Anything I find will likely just make more questions.”

She was probably right, but Rick was persistent. He would keep asking questions until they invariably answered themselves.

One way or another.


At his desk, alone that night, Rick pulled out the poetry. He thought about the man in the photo, the sparkle in his eyes and the trim of his suit. Mentally, he recreated it, seeing the holster on the opposite hip.

A leftie.

The strong block print with the leftward slant.

Coincidence, maybe.

The ticket stubs were from three years ago. The photo had had no date, but the timing made sense. The poetry clearly described the ODS and that had been the most recent picture.

And the poetry – somehow it fit.

The silent horn, it blows;
a clarion call to unseen war.
The shadowed soldier knows
it’s time to head for distant shore.

It was probably stupid – he was probably over thinking it – but he couldn’t shake it. Just like he could shake the words in verse or the look in the man’s eyes.

A shadowed warrior. The ghost haunting his desk.

The missing link.

The soul of the ODS.

Rick didn’t know who the man was or why he’d left, but he was pretty sure that when he walked away, he took the best parts of Michael, Casey and Carson with him.

A clarion call to unseen war? A distant shore?

Wherever the man was, Rick didn’t know whether to resent him or thank him.

Maybe both.

Inexplicably, he wanted to find out.

Putting the poetry away, he promised himself he would.


An operative went AWOL in Germany. They went to extract him, but when the man up and killed himself, Rick wanted to stay.

His team was a hard sell.

“It’s noble,” Michael said. “But we don’t have enough background on this mission. Or approval.”

“That hasn’t stopped us before,” Rick said.

“You’re responding out of some irrational form of grief,” Casey told him. “Nobility is a waste of a virtue.”

“The cover’s not so bad, though,” Carson said, knocking back another drink. “I could do with working at a bar.”

“That wouldn’t work anyway,” Rick said. “We’d need to go in as a possible supplier if we want any chance of making contact.”

Carson made a face. “Count me out, then,” he said. “If there’s no free alcohol, what’s the point?”

“The point is that he was close,” Rick said. “It wouldn’t be too hard to get a cover. If we can convince him to buy, then we’ve nailed him.”

“Gallo was in for years and couldn’t nail him,” Michael said. “And you think we can do it in weeks?”

“It’s ambitious,” Rick said. “But we can. I know we can.”

They were dubious. Michael exchanged careful looks with the others before pursing his lips and narrowing his eyes on Rick. “Are you sure?” he asked. “We’d be better off walking away.”

“We didn’t join the CIA to do what was better off,” he said. “We joined to do the right thing.”

He meant it. He believed it.

For once, that was enough.

Michael nodded. “Okay, then.”

Carson groaned. “You’re serious?”

“Martinez here seems to think we can do this one,” he said. “And I’m inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt this time.”

Casey grunted. Carson took another drink. Rick felt his chest swell.

“Besides,” Michael said. “If he’s wrong, we can always get him transferred to a remote outpost in Antarctica.”

Casey grinned. “I can drink to that.”

“Hey!” Rick protested.

Carson shoved a drink toward him. “Just drink, kid,” he said. “Nothing seems so bad after a pint or two.”


Once the team committed to the mission, it wasn’t so hard to work out the details. They’d go in under a familiar brand that had been coopted by the CIA a few years ago. They’d use that cover for automatic credibility, hanging around in the bar until they managed to score a meeting. A little smooth talking, an offer that couldn’t be refused, and they’d be able to get in, make the arrest and get out.

“Who will be our undercover man?” Rick asked.

Michael shrugged. “It’s a pretty big responsibility,” he said. “Normally we have a bit more time to set up the details. This is a cover we’ll have to sell more on the fly than normal.”

“I can do it,” Rick said, nodding seriously. “I’m ready.”

Michael lifted his eyebrows. “That’s ambitious.”

“That’s stupid,” Casey said.

Rick frowned.

“It’s a nuanced thing,” Michael explained in conciliation. “None of your missions have been nearly so involved.”

“I’m out,” Casey said. “I don’t have the patience to be a simpering drug dealer.”

“And I think I’m better off running point behind the scenes,” Michael said. He paused. “That just leaves Carson.”

Carson stopped mid drink. Swallowing, he made a face. “No, man,” he said. “I’m too old for this kind of crap.”

“You’re the smoothest one of us all,” Michael argued.

“I’m not a charmer,” Carson snipped back. “You know that.”

“You’re the closest thing we’ve got,” Michael said.

“I hate to agree with anything that suggests Simms has a personality, but I think Michael’s right,” Casey said.

“I still think I can do it,” Rick interjected.

Carson looked at Rick, face dark. “No,” he said. “They’re right. I’ll do it.”

Rick’s frustrations mounted. “But I can do it!”

“That fact that you have to whine about it like a three year old is more reason that I’m doing it,” Carson said.

“Good,” Michael said, even as Rick sulked. “It’s settled.”

“Under one condition, though,” Carson said. “The Agency foots the bill for the drink.”

“You really want to create an itemized tab for your drinking habit?” Casey asked indignantly.

“Hell, yes,” Carson said. “I’m a drug runner and a piss poor music organizer. Alcohol is like oxygen to me. If you want this thing to be a success, I can be worried about my tab.”

Michael rolled his eyes. “Spoken like a true American hero.”


Carson was begrudging about his job, but he wasn’t bad at it. Rick watched him work and found himself hoping for failure, but Carson did his job just fine. In fact, he was more than fine. Talking to criminals, he fit right in. Cool and easy and utterly believable.

Listening, Rick almost had to gape. “I had no idea he was—“ he fumbled, turning red.

Casey smirked. “You had no idea he was any good,” he said.

Rick shrugged feebly. “Yeah,” he admitted. “I’ve just never seen him try before, I guess.”

“Putting forth the least possible version of yourself is a great way to gain the element of surprise,” Casey instructed him. “And some people only perform under pressure.”

That was true, Rick figured. For Michael and Casey, he had no doubts.

But for Carson…

Watching him lie and manipulate, schmooze and waffle – he was flawless. Almost like it wasn’t a cover at all. Maybe Rick could learn something from Simms after all.

For some reason, he just wasn’t sure he wanted to.


To say things went poorly would be like saying that Michael preferred control or that Casey had some physical skill. An understatement of the grossest and more ludicrous kind.

Gallo wasn’t dead; the boss’ girlfriend was pregnant by a CIA officer; Rick risked his fledgling relationship with Adele over heroin; Carson drank their entire budget in one day; then the bodyguard had found the bug they’d planted.

And that had just been the start. Then Blanke had gotten apprehended at the airport, Adele had read in German authorities and the boss sent his minions to the meet and kept Carson as collateral. As if that hadn’t been enough, the Germans decided to finish the raid anyway, regardless of the risk posed to the ODS’ man, effectively sentencing Carson to death.

Without radio contact, Rick felt his stomach churn dangerously as Michael drove them back. He went faster than Rick had ever seen him go before, face pinched and knuckles white on the wheel. The look of determination in his face was only vaguely familiar; Rick remembered it from the vestiges of his consciousness back in Bolivia, although he’d often suspected he’d hallucinated at least some of that.

Now, though, Rick wasn’t so sure. Because Michael didn’t stop and Casey didn’t blink, and they barely even spoke as they got into position, ready to blow the wall and get Carson the hell out.

But when they got there, Carson was waiting for them in the alleyway.

“About damn time,” he muttered. “You know they bungled the meet.”

Rick was too stunned to speak, and even though Michael found his voice, he sounded unusually breathless. “Yeah,” he said. “The Germans screwed us over to make the lesser bust.”

“Figures,” Carson muttered.

Casey came up, shaking his head. “I can’t stand people who accept less than total victory.”

It was all well and good to some degree. Because Rick had expected the worst, and this was most definitely not the worst. Which just begged the question: “How are you alive?”

Carson raised his eyebrows. “You don’t have to sound so damn disappointed, kid,” he said.

Rick’s mouth opened, then closed. “I just – it would have been obvious that the set up was on your side.”

“Of course it was,” Carson said. “Sons of bitches waved a gun in my face and kept talking about pulling the trigger.”

Rick shook his head. “So how come they didn’t?”

Carson smiled, a little bitter. “I talked my way out of it,” he said.

“But how?” Rick asked, still gaping.

Carson rolled his eyes. “I played the victim card,” he said. “Made them think I’d been double crossed by my suppliers just as much as they had and then offered to help get revenge while also getting them a bigger score.”

Michael nodded in approval. “Keep the mission in play, nice,” he said.

“We’ve talked about a replacement shipment for next week,” Carson said. “I promised him double for the price, so we’re going to have to work on the kid’s girlfriend—“

“Love has to be good for something,” Casey said.

Rick’s brow furrowed.

“How are we going to catch him in the act, though?” Michael asked. “He’s going to be gun shy after this foul up.”

“I know,” Carson said. “I promised to deliver it to him personally. So if we can get a wire on me and get me back in here with the shipment, we should be good to go.”

Michael nodded again. “Not bad.”

Carson grinned tiredly. “I’ve spent too much time around you paranoid bastards for my own good.”

That could have been that. The mission in play; the team alive, okay. But Rick couldn’t shake it. “I still don’t understand why he didn’t just kill you,” he said. “I’ve read the file on this guy. He doesn’t give second chances.”

“You underestimating my ability to play the part?” Carson asked.

“No,” Rick said. “I just couldn’t imagine any cover would be enough for that situation.”

Carson’s eyes were weary, his smile cold. “It’s not so hard,” he said. “I was begging for my life. That kind of desperation didn’t have to be faked. Made everything else pretty believable.”

He was right, of course. He had to be right. Desperation was a strong asset.

It was also a weakness. Rick supposed it was just good that this time it worked out in their favor.


Everyone got their happy ending. Gallo and his girlfriend got away. The bad guy was arrested. The Germans got their pride; the CIA got their man. Even Blanke made it back to the United States without further incident. Adele’s tenure in Higgins’ chair was successful; the ODS had saved the day again.

So Rick couldn’t decide why the entire thing sat so poorly with him. There had been fear, of course. That car trip over to find Carson had been one of the scariest moments of his life – maybe even more unnerving than bleeding out in the back of a van, miles from medical help. But Carson had been fine. He’d been more than fine. He’d saved himself and the mission – without any help at all.

That was a good thing. Sometimes defying the odds meant happy endings even when there should be tragedy.

And yet, it bothered him. The explanation had seemed legitimate and still.


It’s not so hard. I was begging for my life. That kind of desperation didn’t have to be faked. Made everything else pretty believable.

He could still see Carson’s cold, tired eyes. That smile, knowing, futile, regretful. He hadn’t been the triumphant hero; he’d been the war-weary survivor, at any cost.

At any cost.

Rick couldn’t judge, because Rick didn’t know what he’d do in that position. He could say what lies he’d tell if it was his life on the line and no back up in sight. He didn’t know.


Adele pulled him aside the next morning. “Hey,” she said. “We got kind of waylaid by that last mission.”

Rick smiled grimly. “I know,” he said. “I still can’t believe we pulled that out.”

She laughed. “I know,” she said. “Higgins was nearly apoplectic when he found out. But since it ended so well, he couldn’t really say anything about it.”

“I’m not even sure how it all worked out,” Rick admitted. Michael had been vague in the paperwork, and Rick had been too tired to do anything but provide his initials and send the report off.

“Well,” she said. “What I was going to say was that we got so involved in that last mission that I never got to tell you what I found out.”

Rick felt himself brighten. “The file,” he remembered. “Could you identify the fourth operative?”

She had an apologetic look on her face. “I was able to confirm that he was the fourth member of the ODS about three years ago. But everything else in the file was classified.”

Rick’s brow darkened. “You couldn’t even get a name?”

She shrugged. “His file is still active in some way,” she said. “If he’s still involved in sensitive missions, then his real identity is going to be need to know.”

“So that’s it?” Rick asked, incredulous. All his poking and prodding, and he was being stopped by red tape.

“Sorry,” she said, reaching out to squeeze his arm. “You could just ask them about it.”

Rick grunted. “You just got done overseeing a mission with the ODS,” he reminded her. “Do you think they’re just going to tell me about the mystery man whose file is sealed?”

She winced. “Yeah, I guess not,” she said. Then, she hesitated. “I still don’t totally get why this matters so much to you. They trust you, you know.”

“I do know,” Rick said. “And I don’t know, I trust them.”

“Then who cares?” she pressed. “This is the CIA. After a few years, we all have skeletons in our closets.”

Rick sighed, trying to verbalize it. He wasn’t sure he totally understood it. But the glaring absence, the missing piece – it bothered him. For all this team was, it wasn’t all it should be, and Rick was becoming keenly aware that the most crucial element was missing. Rick was being shoehorned into a void he could never possibly fill, and if he was ever going to figure that out, he had to know who left it – and why.

Then he’d understand why Michael was a heartless, paranoid bastard. Then he’d know why Casey was practically an automaton. Then he’d know why Carson drank his way through every mission.

And then Rick would understand the poetry in the drawer. He’d understand.

“It’s not about the skeletons,” Rick told her. “It’s about the team now. We cut that mission too close in the field.”

“That was bad luck.”

“Maybe,” Rick conceded. “But it was also just the way things are for the ODS. And if I’m going to keep putting my life and my career on the line, I need to know why.”

She was quiet for a moment, eyebrows knit together. Finally she nodded. “Okay, then,” she said. “If there’s anything I can do…”

His expression softened. “Hey, you’ve been great,” he said. “Really, I owe you for looking.”

Her eyes twinkled. “Well, Operative Martinez. I might know a few ways you can make it up to me.”

Rick grinned back. “I look forward to it.”

“Oh,” she said, starting to saunter away. “You should.”


Rick stopped by his office before taking off, checking to see if he had any new emails before turning off his computer for the night. The other chairs were empty, and he hesitated. Sighing, he opened the drawer, pulling up the drop bottom.

It was getting to be a habit, an obsessive compulsive comfort mechanism. Looking at the items helped him think; it helped calmed him down. When everything else was a question mark, these were concrete pieces of evidence, tangible answers to questions he couldn’t quite fathom yet.

Rick couldn’t figure out his team, but he was figuring out more about this man. True, Rick didn’t know his name, but that didn’t totally matter. He knew the man was a slob – the pages were stained and crumbled. He also clearly liked coffee, if the brown rings smeared onto some of the items was any indication. He had an affinity for melodrama – hell, he probably read Shakespeare if the predictable rhyme structure of the poetry was any indication.

The British thing still didn’t make much sense – how did a Brit get on with the CIA – though it would probably explain his tendency toward poetry. Poetry and verse weren’t as marginalized overseas.

Looking over the flattened pages, he thought about the man in the photo. His smiles; his eyes. His day-old stubble.

He hides his name and face;
they wait for him, should he return,
but in some distant place
they’re truths no one may ever learn.
His purpose he conceals,
a smile and nod his one disguise.
He holds to his ideals
in spite of all the acts and lies.

Acts and lies, just like any spy. They wait for him, should he return…return to where? Back to the ODS? Or maybe back home to England?

Rick wondered briefly if maybe he was a double agent, somehow implanted in the CIA by MI6. That fit with the concealed purpose. But the rest – the respect of the ODS, the willingness to be a star on the wall – those weren’t the words of a traitor.

They were the words of a hero.

The kind of spy Rick longed to be.

Which made the question even more pressing: what had happened? And why had it presumably changed the ODS so much?

Questions. Always questions.

Frustrated, Rick put the poem back and resealed the fake bottom.

After all these questions, he was more than ready for answers.


It was Rick’s idea.

“You want to sell false hope to a dying man?” Michael asked, brow wrinkled.

Rick shrugged, a little sheepish. “It would be the easiest way to gain access to him and put the pieces in place,” he said. “Everything we’ve got on this guy says he’s desperate.”

“Essentially, you want to take advantage of him when he’s at his weakest,” Casey concluded.

Rick shifted, guilty. “That’s bad, isn’t it?”

“No,” Casey said. “It’s genius.”

“It’s our best chance to make sure that when he dies, the next in line is his good son – not the maniacal would-be dictator with plans to rule with an iron fist,” Michael agreed.

Rick hesitated, looking from one teammate to the next. “So…?”

Carson sighed, sitting up. “So, kid,” he said. “Looks like you’re a heartless bastard just like the rest of us.” He offered a grim smile. “Welcome to the club.”


This mission had its ups and downs.

Up: he got to see Adele in an amazing dress.

Down: he had to watch her flirt with a dictator’s son.

Up: Michael and Carson got in undercover with no problem.

Down: The body Rick and Casey helped prepared to set up the other son sunk – taking the mission with it.

Up: they found a replacement.

Down: it was a pretty crappy job.

Up: they got the job done. The father died, the son with military goals was disinherited and the younger one took over with the intent to lead fairly.

Down: their success was entirely an accident. The tipoff documents meant to implicate the bad son had actually implicated the good one, but somehow that had worked out because that was the way things were with the ODS.

And after all this time, Rick just had to accept it.


The ODS received a commendation for their work. It should have been a heady thing, meeting the vice president and receiving applause from his coworkers. Even a message from the president himself.

But back in the office, Rick had trouble being happy. This was what he’d wanted – the career, the honors, the purpose – and yet, it was nothing he’d expected. He’d gone from the mole to the new guy, the protected kid to the trusted teammate. He was one of them. And yet, he wasn’t.

He never would be.

He couldn’t change his team. Maybe he couldn’t even figure them out. Maybe he just had to take the ups with the downs and accept it all. Maybe it was okay this way. Maybe he didn’t need answers. Maybe he was looking for skeletons in a closet he had no right to shake. Maybe it was all in his head – maybe it was nothing.

Michael and Casey and Carson – they liked him. They looked after him. They included him – most of the time. Maybe that was what mattered.

After all, Rick helped change a country by lying to a despot. He helped bring a man to power who wanted to sleep around and get drunk. None of these things were perfect, and yet here he was, lauded and praised and honored. Being a spy wasn’t about perfection; it was about being good enough.

Rick had to think what he had here with the ODS was good enough.

Lingering at his desk, he read the poetry again.

Brave companions
lead the charge;
never flinching
from their part

Brave companions – the ODS was that, even when they didn’t want to be. Lead the charge – the ODS was set on doing the right thing, even when it wasn’t in their orders. Never flinching – maybe not never, but most of the time. Enough of the time.

Their part.

Rick had a part in this.

It wasn’t what he expected, and he didn’t totally understand, but maybe it was good enough.

Putting the poem away, he removed the magnet, putting it back in the drawer above it. No more questions – because there weren’t any answers.

And it was time for Rick to really accept that – once and for all.



Posted by: fabi (tearful_eye)
Posted at: October 15th, 2012 12:42 pm (UTC)

ohhh, i'm loving this story. especially now that rick's finding out all those things about the mysterious fourth man ... happy sigh. i'm very much looking forward to the next part!

Posted by: do i dare or do i dare? (faye_dartmouth)
Posted at: October 16th, 2012 07:43 pm (UTC)
billy knows

I'm really glad you're reading -- and enjoying it!

Thanks :)

Posted by: sophie_deangirl (sophie_deangirl)
Posted at: October 17th, 2012 07:05 pm (UTC)
Billy's "ghost"

I LOVE this chapter because Billy's "ghost", his presence is so PALPABLE and Rick feels his influence in the way that he did on the show, but here, it's the poems and other evidences that Rick is uncovering that is also exerting that same powerful influence.

There were TONS of fave parts, but this, as Billy once said about Shakespeare's words, "cuts right to the heart of things" in this chapter:

They were the words of a hero.

The kind of spy Rick longed to be.

-- THUD!!!!!!!!!

Another fave moment:

At his desk, alone that night, Rick pulled out the poetry. He thought about the man in the photo, the sparkle in his eyes and the trim of his suit. Mentally, he recreated it, seeing the holster on the opposite hip.

A leftie.

The strong block print with the leftward slant.

Coincidence, maybe.

The ticket stubs were from three years ago. The photo had had no date, but the timing made sense. The poetry clearly described the ODS and that had been the most recent picture.

And the poetry – somehow it fit.

The silent horn, it blows;
a clarion call to unseen war.
The shadowed soldier knows
it’s time to head for distant shore.

It was probably stupid – he was probably over thinking it – but he couldn’t shake it. Just like he could shake the words in verse or the look in the man’s eyes.

A shadowed warrior. The ghost haunting his desk.

The missing link.

The soul of the ODS.

Rick didn’t know who the man was or why he’d left, but he was pretty sure that when he walked away, he took the best parts of Michael, Casey and Carson with him.

A clarion call to unseen war? A distant shore?

Wherever the man was, Rick didn’t know whether to resent him or thank him.

Maybe both.

Inexplicably, he wanted to find out.

Putting the poetry away, he promised himself he would.

--just WOW...

Posted by: do i dare or do i dare? (faye_dartmouth)
Posted at: October 20th, 2012 03:09 am (UTC)
Re: Billy's "ghost"
billy likes

I knew if I was going to have Billy be missing, I couldn't have him completely gone from the fic. The desk connection thing evolved to fix that. So I'm glad it worked :)


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