Chapter Forty-Three

"Men," gripes Felicia to Lucy as Kevin and Mac talk about Tom's possible involvement in whatever is going on. "This is incredible! Neither of them believes me that Ryan is still alive."

Lucy is hesitant, but, she's seen enough lately to make her question almost anything. Still carrying around memories of her recent trip, she says, "Okay, Felicia, I believe you. There-I know that's weird, but it's gotten to where weird isn't so weird anymore. I mean, just because everybody thinks someone is dead doesn't necessarily make it so. And, if that person is believed to be dead, then he or she has an advantage if he or she wants to do something covert, or even become someone else."

Felicia is listening, sorting through Lucy's reasoning.

"After all," Lucy continues, "If being alive is inconvenient, you can pretend to die so that people who are looking for you stop."

"Exactly," Felicia says, "I think."

Lucy, warming to her topic, continues, "There are things going on that may well be linked to this-of course, we don't know that but-I have it!"


"We'll investigate this together."


"You are a PI, aren't you?"

"Of course. But you?"

"I'm a psychic," Lucy smiles, "Which makes us an unbeatable team. I 'see', and you 'seek'."

Felicia is skeptical, but realizes that Mac and Kevin don't believe her. "Okay, Lucy, let's give it a shot!" Hmmmmm

He's been thinking, waiting, wondering when he'd do it. But, there was something troubling him, something wrong here. Just go in and do the job, he tells himself, but as yet, he can't. It wasn't like Tom had done anything really wrong-circumstances beyond his control had intervened making him a liability, by 'their' standards. 'They' give the orders, and if something goes awry, somebody else dies. Never them. Their hands never got dirty, they enjoyed positions of prestige and power.

Life wasn't fair, Ryan decides, and for the first time, we see his face. His eyes are troubled, but still shine with a slightly insane glow. No, not much about life was fair, or he wouldn't be where he was, functioning more as a weapon than the highly trained saver of life he should still have been. He'd long since lost count of the number of people he'd killed, and he supposed that he'd kill more before much longer.

Yes, he was a weapon, but not a mindless, conscienceless one. He still thought about what he did, occasionally enjoyed it, but always there was a painful emptiness within. Nothing he'd ever done seemed to fill that black void, and he doubted that anything would.

Unfortunately, there was little left for him to do. He'd never be an accepted member of society again, even though he knew that there were plenty of people there whose souls were as black as his own. Life wasn't fair-he'd known that on some level since childhood, and all that was left to him was survival.

Ryan glanced up at the darkened windows of Kathryn Bell's apartment, thinking of Tom and his enjoyment of life's physical pleasure. Ryan crouches down. There's no rush. Might as well give the poor jerk a few last moments before he discovered how really little he counted in the grand scheme of things. It was a shame-Tom didn't really deserve to die, but there was a plus, here. He was with a blonde woman. Not Felicia, but still blonde. And that meant so much to a man like him.

There was also the continuing game with Mac Scorpio, if he ever realized that there was a game afoot. Ryan paused, realizing that Mac probably thought that he was tracking Kevin. "Maybe he thinks that Kevin is really me. Maybe he thinks that Kevin died in the fire and all this time I've been masquerading as him. Or, maybe he is beginning to wonder if I really did die."

Ryan reaches into his pocket and touches Carly's locket. "Time for a little red herring," he chuckles. "Tom, old buddy, your death won't be wasted. I'll make it count. I know how much you hated your old man, and wanted to destroy his legacy. I'll never forget those hours in Africa when we talked about how we both felt like outsiders all our lives. Sorry it's got to end like this, but that's life, and life isn't fair."

With that, he smiles and heads up the stairs to Kat's darkened rooms. Hmmmm

"Uncle Mac," Robin says carefully, "I need to talk with you." Mac has just arrived back at his place where he's expected to find Kat and finds Robin instead.

"Then talk," he says. He's still digesting the things he'd learned this evening, and it hasn't occurred to him to wonder what she's doing home.

"I asked Jason to talk with you. Has he?"

"I haven't talked with Jason for several days," Mac says. "Why should he talk with me?"

"This isn't going to be easy," Robin says. "And it's a betrayal of him, but I think that you should know that Jason slept with Carly, and that there is the possibility that her baby is his. I'm telling you that because there is a killer out there, and you need to rule Jason out as a suspect so that you can get on with the investigation."

She pauses, and explains. "I couldn't live with myself if somebody else got killed when something I knew might have enabled you to catch the killer sooner instead of looking in the wrong places."

Mac nods. "I understand, Robin. Between the two of us, I don't believe for a moment that Jason killed Carly, or Gina, even though he knew both of them. Lots of people knew both of them. As for sleeping with Carly-I think that we need to have him tested. Does he have an alibi for that night?"

"No," Robin admits. "But I know him."

"Tell him to come on in and we'll keep this as quiet as possible," Mac tells her. Hmmmmmm

Stay tuned!! Will Felicia and Lucy make a great team?? Will Lucy be able to home in on Ryan's negative vibes?? And, speaking of negative vibes, what is about to happen in Kat's apartment? (I mean, involving Ryan?) Will Mac go over to her place to make up for missing their date?? Might this get a tad messy?? And, now that Robin's spilled the beans to Mac, will Jason be angry with her?? Hmmmmmmmmm