Misunderstandings

Ellie overhears a conversation between Casey and the general.

Rated Mature

English –

Romance/Angst –

Casey/Alex C., Ellie B. –

Chapters: 5 –

Words: 8,047 

Updated: Oct 6, 2010 –

Published: Mar 14, 2010

 

Misunderstandings

The Present………………

“Ellie! Please, wait I can explain.” Casey ran after her. “Ellie!”

But it was too late. She was already in her apartment with the door shut and he was sure barricaded. Casey hurried back into the room, stopping only to grab his shoes.

“Colonel, this briefing isn’t over.” General Beckman sounded as perturbed as she looked.

“With all due respect general, it’s over for me. I have to see Ellie and explain. She’s upset and I need to make sure she’s ok.” Without waiting for a reply, Casey reached over and turned off the monitor.

He secured the weapons he had been concealing when the General interrupted him with one of her surprise briefings. He had been in his bedroom getting ready to lock them up when the General had appeared on his bedroom monitor. If he had just moved downstairs to take the call, then none of this would have happened. Making his way to the front door he set the alarms and prepared himself for the confrontation ahead. How was he going to explain this to her and make her understand. He knew what she was thinking and he knew that he had to get to her quick.

Running across the courtyard, he made his way to her door and knocked. “Ellie, let me in. We need to talk.”

“I have nothing to say to you.” The reply was so quiet he almost couldn’t hear it. He could tell she was crying and it was breaking his heart that he was responsible.

“Ellie, please. You don’t understand. I know what you heard, but if you’ll just let me explain, I promise you it will be alright.” He sounded desperate. Maybe because he was. If pleading wasn’t going to work, then he would do what he did best. Take the situation in hand. “If you don’t open the door, I’m going to bust it down.”

“You wouldn’t dare.” She replied.

“I would. Because you see I’m desperate and a desperate man will do about anything to get what he wants.” Casey explained.

“Give me a few minutes. I want to wash my face and pull myself together. Can you do that for me? She asked.

“Five minutes Ellie. Not a minute more. If this door isn’t open in five, then I’m going to open it myself.” He answered.

As he stood in the courtyard, he thought back to how what was supposed to be a nice quiet evening had turned into the mess he was now trying to straighten out…………………………..

Earlier………………………..

Ellie gave herself one final look in the mirror. She hoped John liked her new dress. They were going out to dinner to celebrate the six month dating anniversary. He had told her he would pick her up at seven, but she was in a hurry to see him and his reaction to the dress. It was blue and short and had a plunging neckline. Deciding she couldn’t wait any longer, she grabbed her purse and keys and locked her door. Making her way across the courtyard to John’s apartment she knocked. When he didn’t answer she used the key he given her and made her way inside. Closing the door behind her she heard voices coming from the bedroom. It sounded like he was talking to a woman on a speaker phone. Making her way down the hall, the voices became clearer and she could make out what they were saying.

“I must admit Colonel, that when you first told me you were going to date Chuck’s sister I had my reservations. But since it’s allowed you to get closer to him without compromising your cover I see that I was wrong.”

“Thank you General.” Casey couldn’t be smug even though he wanted to. “Dating Ellie has enabled me to not only spend more time with Chuck, but get a handle on other areas of his life that might affect his work as the intersect.” He couldn’t let the General know that he was dating Ellie for a hell of a lot more reasons than that. Number one being that he was head over heels in love with her. The General could never find out.

“Well, just don’t blow it Colonel. Use Chuck’s sister however you need to to keep the mission on track. And I hope for your sake she never finds out that you’ve been using her to further your cover. A woman that finds out she’s being used, is never a good thing.” Just as the general finished speaking, Casey heard a gasp from the doorway. Spinning around he caught a glimpse of blue as it made its way down the hallway.

“Holy shit.” He thought to himself. “Ellie had come into the apartment and heard his conversation with the general. “Damn it.” He hadn’t had the silent alarms on because he had been recalibrating them and had yet to finish. This wasn’t good. She was thinking that he was only seeing her to use her, when nothing could be further from the truth.

Present Day…………………..

Casey came out of his day dream just as his watch signaled her five minutes were up. Just as he started to kick the door open he heard tires screeching out of the tenant’s parking lot. He got to the street just in time to see Ellie’s BMW disappear down the street.

“Damn it!” He exclaimed as he realized she had tricked him. Running back to the apartment he found the window to her bedroom was open. She had climbed out. Climbing in through the same window, Casey found her closet and dresser drawers open. Moving to the closet he saw that her suitcase was missing. She wasn’t planning on coming back any time soon. “Double damn it!” He exclaimed as he put his fist through the wall.

Reaching into his pocket he took out his cell phone and punched a number. He was not looking forward to this, but he needed help. The phone rang twice and then answered. “Get your ass home now Bartowski. We’ve got a situation.” Without waiting for a reply, he hung up and sat down on Ellie’s bed. Remembering the first time he was in her room where she knew about it………………………..

Five Months Before……………………….

Thanks to those of you who have reviewed. Keep them coming……………

Five Months Before……………………….

Casey was enjoying a rare day off. He had gotten up early, ran some errands and then came home in hopes of just relaxing. As he rounded the corner into the courtyard, he saw Ellie sitting by the fountain. She had on her scrubs and was playing with the water oblivious to everything and everyone around her. He could tell by the look on her face that she was upset. Something had happened and he wanted to know whom or what was responsible. Wait a minute, he thought to himself. Where the hell did that thought come from? He tried to tell himself that it was because she was Chuck’s sister and if she were upset, then Chuck was upset. The two seemed to be intertwined when it came to their emotions. And if Chuck were upset, he couldn’t flash. So, yeah that was it. That was why he cared that Ellie was upset. Not because she was one of the nicest, sweetest, most beautiful women he had ever met. So, now that he was back on track, he made his way over to her.

“Hi Ellie.” He tried to sound casual.

“Hi Casey.” She smiled up at him. “Not working today?”

“Uh no. Day off. Just ran some errands and came home. What about you? You going to work or coming home?” He asked already knowing the answer. He knew her work schedule sometimes better than she did.

“Coming home. I worked last night.” Again her hand played with the water.

“Are you alright? Did something happen?” He tried to not notice the way her hand flowed over the water and the thought of what said hand would feel like running over his arms.

“Not really. Just wondering when everyone is going to stop worrying about me. Ever since I called things off with Devon, everyone seems to think that I’m in need of comfort, or someone to talk to about it. People check on me all day. Chuck, Sarah, people from work. Even Morgan.” She smiles at that. “Everyone but you.”

Uh oh. He wasn’t sure if that was a good or bad thing. He hadn’t mentioned the breakup to her because one, he wasn’t really good at those types of conversations and two, he was afraid that now she was single he would do something crazy like ask her out. Damn it. Again with those thoughts. When the hell did he start thinking of Ellie that way? He noticed she was staring at him waiting on a response.

“Well, you didn’t seem to be too upset by it and I figured you would be overwhelmed with people asking you about it. I just thought I would let you deal with it.” There, this conversation stuff wasn’t so hard. He might get used to it yet.

“Thank you. That’s exactly what I need.” She smiled at him again and he resisted the urge to pump his fist into the air. He had given her what no one else had been able to. She stood up, reached up on her toes and kissed his check. “I really appreciate your understanding.” Casey couldn’t believe that she had kissed him. Wow, this woman was really getting to him. All he could think about was putting her over his shoulder, carrying her into his apartment, and showing her exactly what she did need. “I’ll talk to you later. I’m going to be grilling steaks tonight. Would you like to come over?” She asked.

“Sure. What time?”

“Seven?”

“I’ll see you then. Do you need me to bring anything?”

“Dessert?”

“You got it. I’ll you at seven.” He made his way to his apartment trying to ignore the fact that his smile for once wasn’t forced.

Going into her apartment Ellie allowed her thoughts to drift to Casey. Which she found that she had been doing a lot of lately. He had snuck up on her and she wondered why she had never noticed him before now. Even though she had been with Devon, she should have seen the way it always seemed to be Casey that came to her rescue when something broke, or Casey that was willing to listen to her. After the breakup, she had started to notice other things, like his arms. Those were some nice arms. And the way he exuded sexy without knowing it. Casey was definitely a hot, sexy man and she was determined to get to know him better. She would start tonight at dinner.

Casey rang Ellie’s bell promptly at seven and when she opened the door, she rang his bell. She was wearing tight jeans and a pink tank top. Her feet were bare and her toes polished the same shade as her top. He was finding it very difficult to keep a grip on the pie in his hands. Because his hands had a mind of their own and were wanting to drop the pie, and replace it with Ellie.

“Casey? Is everything ok?”

Great she was expecting him to be able to form a sentence. “Yeah. You look great.”

Again, he was rewarded with one of her smiles. “Thank you. Is that Key Lime pie?”

“Is that alright?”

“I love Key Lime pie. How did you know?”

“Lucky guess.” Thank God, she would never know that he knew everything about her from what kind of pie she liked to what shade of foundation she used. Protecting her brother was paying off. All the intell he had collected over time had included personal details about Ellie as well. Somehow though he figured he better be glad she would never know about his intel.

“Well come in. I have the steaks started. It’s just going to be you and me. Chuck and Sarah decided to go out. I hope that’s ok.”

OK? He was making a mental note to be a little nice to Walker and Bartowski for giving him this chance to be alone with her. “Sure no complaints here. More pie for us.”

They worked together to finish the meal falling into easy conversation. “I defiantly think “First Blood” is a must see action adventure. I mean come on, Stallone sewing up his arm? Does a man get any more macho than that?” She turned to take the food to the table.

Casey just stood there contemplating how soon he could cut himself and show her his sewing techniques. Any woman who would watch movies like that let alone admit to loving them, was a keeper. Making his way into the dining room he sat the glasses down and proceeded to open the wine.

“You don’t seem like the kind of lady who would like those kinds of movies.” He poured the wine and handed her a glass.

“Well, I had to keep up with Chuck. He was into all that stuff and I would watch with him and Morgan. I just kind of go into them. I developed quite a fondness for men in camo.” She replied and Casey wondered how long it would take him to get back to his apartment and suit up.

“Everything taste ok?”

“Delicious.” He shoved another fork full of food into his mouth to keep from saying something stupid, like how about we have desert in the bedroom?

After dinner they sat on the couch talking some more. Casey was amazed at how easy it was to talk to Ellie. He could be himself, or as much of his real self as he could be, with her. He didn’t have to be the hard talking, tuff acting colonel with her. He found that she was interested in what he had to say and he found himself hanging on every word that came out of her pretty little mouth.

Finally when it was time to go, she walked him to the door. “I had a great time Casey. Thank you for coming over.”

“Same here Ellie. Thanks for inviting me. We need to do it again.”

“Anytime.” She raised up on her tip toes and kissed his check. “Good night.”

“Good night. Make sure you lock up when I leave.”

“Yes sir.” She replied with a mock salute.

Casey waited until he heard the locks turn and went back to his apartment. He decided to review some new intel that had just come in that day to try and get his mind off of just how much he wanted to go back over and make Ellie Bartowski his.

Ellie cleaned up and was preparing to go to bed when she heard a noise coming from her bedroom. She thought she might have been imagining it when she heard it again. Someone was in there. She opened the door and ran over to Casey’s. Knocking on his door and glancing back at her apartment she called out. “Casey! Casey! Are you in there?”

Suddenly the door opened and she was pulled into the safety of his apartment. “Ellie, what’s wrong?”

“There’s someone in my bedroom. I was about to get ready for bed, when I heard something. I thought maybe I was imagining it, but then I heard it again. I got out and came here.”

“Good girl. Now stay here I’m going to go check it out.” He couldn’t grab a weapon from his arsenal without her seeing him. He would have to go in unarmed.

“Casey, please be careful.”

“I will. Lock the door behind me and don’t open it until you hear me tell you it’s safe.”

“I promise.”

Casey made his way over to her apartment. Making his way down the hall, he could feel the hair stand up on the back of his neck. Someone was in her room. Coming to her doorway he quietly toed the door open. He could make out a figure dressed in black going through her closet. Casey readied himself for battle………………

Casey flipped on the light and the intruder immediately turned, dropping the items in his hands.

“Hey asshole, those don’t belong to you.” Casey moved into the room.

“This doesn’t concern you!” The intruder said defiantly.

“Well you see, that’s where you’re wrong. The lady whose stuff you are pilfering through is a close personal friend of mine. So, are we going to do this the easy way or the hard way?” Casey replied, reading the intruder’s body language for the answer, in case the guy couldn’t tell he was no match for a trained government agent.

“You don’t scare me.” He charged at Casey, trying to throw him off balance.

“I love it when they pick the hard way.” Casey blocked his attack and followed through with a hit to the stomach. The intruder doubled over and tried to ram his head into Casey’s stomach. Casey blocked his head and immediately took his fists and pounded the guy in the back taking him down. Placing his foot on his back he pulled out his cell phone. Sarah immediately picked up.

“Walker, I just intercepted an intruder in Ellie’s bedroom. I need time to figure out if it’s a random B&E or if he’s connected to our mission. Can you send me two of our guys over as cops?”

“You got it. Is Ellie okay?” Sarah asked.

“Yeah. She’s safe in my place.”

“Good. Unit is on its way.”

“Thanks. I’ll check in later.” Casey disconnected the call and yanked the perp up. “Who are you? And what are you doing here?”

“Go to hell.” The guy struggled to get away. A quick upper cut to the chin and the guy was out cold.

Dragging the guy out into the hallway he met the officers Sarah had sent. Nodding to two of them Casey handed the guy over. “Take this guy, Agent Walker will meet you at Castle. Leave him for me. I want to do the interrogation personally.”

The two nodded and left. Casey turned to the other two. “I need to go get the lady who lives here. She’s currently at my place. Just ask her the standard questions and take a statement.”

Casey made his way back to his apartment. Knocking on the door he called out. “Ellie, it’s Casey. You can open the door now.” He heard the locks turn and when the door opened he smiled. She had left the chain on as a precaution. Once she verified that it was indeed Casey, she pulled the chain free and opened the door. “Good thinking. Double checking.” He closed the door behind him.

“Thanks. Is everything ok? Who was he? What did he want?” She was standing with her arms crossed like she was trying to hold herself.

“Yes, everything is ok.” Casey tried to calm her. “I need you to come back your place and give the officers a statement.”

“I don’t want to see him,” she said with a shaky voice.

“You don’t have to. They’ve already taken him into custody. The only people there are the police officers.” Casey assured her. “Besides, I’ll be right there with you.”

“Okay. Thanks. Let’s get this over with.” She took a deep breath and led him out the door.

After the officers left, Ellie stood looking with trepidation down the hall towards her bedroom door.

“Are you ok?” Casey asked.

“I don’t want to be alone tonight. Will you stay with me?” She asked, looking away from the hallway and directly into his eyes.

“Wouldn’t you rather Chuck stayed?” He wasn’t sure him staying the night was a good idea. Especially with the thoughts that had been going through his head lately.

“No offense to my brother, but he could sleep through a nuclear attack.” Then she added softly. “I’d feel safer with you.”

She looked at him with those eyes and he knew he couldn’t turn her down, no matter how hard it would be for him.

“Of course I’ll stay. I just need to go to my place and get some stuff.” At her look of panic of being left alone even for a few minutes, he added, “You can come with me.”

She relaxed again. “Okay. I really appreciate this, Casey. I’m sorry I’m such a wimp.”

“Hey don’t talk about yourself that way. I think you’re really brave.”

“You do?”

“Definitely. I mean come on, you raised Chuck and probably Morgan for the most part.” He was rewarded with a smile.

“You’re right, I am a very brave woman.” She laughed.

“Told you.” She followed him to his apartment.

Once there he left her in the living room, while he went into the bedroom to pack a bag. Looking around the room she noticed how neat, organized and clean everything was. She was just approaching the bookcase when she heard him come back into the room.

“That was fast,” she said turning towards him.

“Well, I travel light,” he joked. “Ready?”

“Sure.” She smiled and headed towards the door.

Once inside her apartment, Casey set his stuff down on the couch. I’ll get you a pillow and blanket,” she said as she made her way down the hallway. Knowing he was right behind her gave her a sense of calm. She opened the hall closet and pulled down the items. Neither one was prepared for the spark of electric that passed between them when their hands touched. They stood there for a moment just looking at each other. Finally John broke the stare and pulled the items the rest of the way out of Ellie’s arms. Turning, he made his way back the couch.

“Well, make yourself at home,” Ellie said from behind him.

“I will, thanks.” He proceeded to make up the bed, needing to keep himself busy so that he didn’t turn around and have her in his arms so fast she wouldn’t remember getting there.

“Have a good night. I’ll see you in the morning,” she said to his back.

“Yeah, you too,” Casey replied.

Ellie couldn’t make herself walk down the hallway.

“I won’t let anyone near you. You’re safe,” Casey said from behind her. He had turned and made his way up to her without her even hearing him.

“I know. I just hate that he was in here touching my things,” she replied.

“At least we got him.” He knew one thing, tomorrow this guy was paying for putting her through this.

“Night, Casey,” Ellie said and moved toward her bedroom.

Once the door was shut, Casey finished making the couch up. Once that was done, he picked up his bag and went to the bathroom to change for the night.

Later on the couch, he found his mind wandering down the hall to where she slept. He already knew what she looked like when she slept from the hours of surveillance footage he had watched. He wanted to the vision live and up close. Wanted to open her door, crawl into her bed, hold her, and if she woke up, make love to her.

He had just drifted off to sleep, thinking of her, when her scream pierced the silence and his body was brought to full alert.

“CASEY!”

Casey burst into the bedroom and saw that no one was there. Ellie had screamed in her sleep and was thrashing about in the bed. Moving quickly to the side of the bed, Casey reached out and touched her shoulder, not wanting to startle her awake.

“Ellie? Ellie. Wake up.” Casey shook her should a little harder.

Ellie jerked awake, and seeing Casey threw herself into his body. Casey’s arms instinctively wrapped around her, holding her as tight as he could without hurting her.

“Oh God Casey. It was so real. He was here, trying to take me away with him.” She closed her eyes at the thought.

“Shhh. It’s ok. It was just a dream.” He took one hand and stroked her hair, soothing her.

“Please don’t leave me.” She begged.

“I won’t, I’ll just be in the other room.” He started to move.

Grabbing his arm, “No, please stay in here with me. I won’t be able to go back to sleep without you here.”

Good God, did she know what she was asking of him? It had been hard enough to sleep in the next room and control the urge to make love to her. But, to ask him to sleep in the same bed without touching her was more than any man could promise.

“Ellie, I’m not sure that is a good idea.” He stood up, needing to put some distance between them

“It’s ok. I know you want me Casey.” She stated boldly rendering him speechless for a moment. “I’m not wrong, am I?”

“No. You’re not wrong. I do want you. But what I want, and what I can have are two different things.” He answered.

“Why can’t you have me? What’s stopping you?” She got out of bed and came to stand in front of him.

Well, let’s see. There’s the fact that I’ve lying to you about who and what I am. Oh and the biggest reason, that being with me would put you in danger. But I can’t tell you any of that, so I’ll do what I’ve been doing all along, lie and hope to God you never find out. Casey thought. “I’m not good enough for you Ellie.”

“What are you talking about?” She moved closer.

“I work at the Buy More Ellie, selling appliances. You’re a respected doctor, just starting out your career. How would it look to your colleges at the hospital if you went from dating a fellow doctor to dating a guy working on commission?” He tried to step away from her.

“John Casey! I cannot believe you are standing there telling me that you actually think I would care what you do for a living.” She was getting angry.

Good maybe she would get angry enough to let this go and he could escape this moment and things could go back to the way there were.

“I do not base my feelings or friendship on what a person does for a career. I base it on what kind of person they are inside where it counts. And you John Casey, inside are the best. I want you and you want me. Nothing else matters.” She moves closer, and touches her hand to his chest. “I’m standing here, barely clothed, next to a bed, telling you that you can have me. That I want you. You can make love to me all night long, for just tonight or however long you want to. So, Casey, what’s it going to be?”

It took Casey all of two seconds to have her naked and pinned beneath him on the bed. It took one second of looking in her eyes afterwards, to know that tonight would never be enough.

The Present…………………

Casey was jolted from his thoughts by the sound of Chuck coming into the room. As expected Sarah was with him.

“Casey what’s going on? Is it Ellie?” Chuck had been scared ever since Casey’s call. He had hung up and ran to get Sarah to go with him. Ellie had to be ok, nothing bad could ever happen to Ellie.

“”Calm down, Bartowski.” Casey was not looking forward to dealing with the nerd’s emotions on top of everything else. He only hoped Walker could keep Chuck calm. He needed intel from the kid, and he needed it yesterday. “Ellie came into my apartment while I was talking to Beckman. She surprised me.”

“You shot her, didn’t you? You shot my sister.” Chuck accused, sounding angrier than they had ever heard him. He was beyond freaked out and was seriously on the verge of going over the edge. “Is she dead, well of course she’s dead, you don’t shoot to wound do you?” Chuck never saw the slap coming until Casey’s hand made contact with his cheek.

“No, I didn’t shoot her. Now calm down and stop acting like a girl.” He nodded toward Sarah, “No offense.” Moving his eyes back to Chuck he continued. “I’m not that trigger-happy. Beckman was telling me that dating Ellie as part of my cover was working out better than she thought it would. Ellie overheard.”

“Oh no.” Sarah replied. “What happened?”

“Exactly what you think. She ran away from me into her apartment. I tried to get her to open the door and let me explain, but she tricked me.” Casey still couldn’t believe she got the upper hand on him. “Said she need time to pull herself together, so I gave her five minutes and told her I would break the door down at five minutes and one second if she didn’t open it herself. She used the time to sneak out of her window. She packed a bag and took off.”

Chuck didn’t know what to feel. He was relieved that Ellie wasn’t physically hurt, but upset that she was emotionally hurt. It did give him some sort of secret pleasure that the good Colonel had been one upped by his big sister.

“We have to find her. She’s upset and in no condition to drive. Not to mention, she’s off the grid and we have no way to protect her.” Sarah’s mind was working through all the details of what needed to happen next. She was as worried about Ellie as Casey and Chuck. She could only imagine what the other woman was thinking. She knew how Casey felt about Ellie. They had had a long talk one night during a stakeout. Both confessing their feelings for the Bartowski siblings.

“Chuck, I need you to think. Where would she go?” Casey asked.

“I don’t know. We don’t have any family she could go to.” Chuck replied, trying to think if Ellie had ever mentioned anywhere she went when she needed to get away.

“I just got a hit on her ATM card.” Sarah checked the message. As soon as Casey had told them what was going on, she had put the trace out. It would return any use of Ellie’s credit cards or check card. She had also put out a trace on her car. “She used the card at the ATM down the street. She withdrew her daily limit of a thousand dollars.”

“Damn.” Casey swore.

“What?” Chuck didn’t see the problem.

“Chuck, she has cash. She’s now really off the grid. We can’t trace her purchases to pin point her location. She can make that money go for several days. All we have now is her car. If she stays on main roads we should be able to get pictures from the traffic cameras to track her.” Sarah explained.

“She won’t stay on them.” Casey couldn’t believe what was formulating in his mind.

“How do you know that?” Chuck was confused.

“Because she’s using our movie game against me.” Casey couldn’t believe he was going to have to admit to Walker and Bartowski the private conversations he had with Ellie. But, he needed their help. “We trade off watching movies. One night we’ll watch one of her chick flicks”, he snarled at the thought of them, “then we’ll watch one of my action adventure movies. After my movies she always has a ton of questions about why did they do this, how did they do that, could it really be done. So, I answer them, in generalities of course. In one of the movies, they find the guy by tracing his card. And like an idiot, I had to tell her that if the guy was smart, he would have gotten cash up front. So, she knew exactly what to do.”

Sarah suddenly had a thought. “What else Casey? You’re holding back. We need to know everything if it’s going to help us find her.”

“We have this game plan, I guess you would call it, that if one of us would disappear, how we would find each other. But, it’s a stupid game. She couldn’t pull it off.” Casey was beyond embarrassed to have them find out.

“Well, you didn’t expect her to double cross you and sneak out the window either did you?” Chuck regretted the words as soon as he saw the look on Casey’s face.

“Chuck’s right. She’s testing you.” Sarah explained. “You two had this whole game plan and so far she’s done the first thing. She doesn’t expect you to come after her. She thinks you never cared and will be glad she’s gone. She isn’t a spy so she doesn’t know how to really do any of this, other than what you’ve talked about. She’ll do everything step by step, because she’s a woman, and deep down she wants you to come after her. She doesn’t think you will, but in heart she wants you to.”

“Well, then she’s going to get exactly what she wants. I’m not going to leave her alone, out there somewhere thinking that I used her.” Casey was more than ready for this game. Ellie was not going to alone for long.

“OK, so what do we do?” Chuck just wanted to find Ellie and talk to her. She knew something was going on with him. He just didn’t know if she thought he had been lying to her too. He had to find her and explain.

“We, don’t do anything. I’m going to go and get my woman.” Casey charged out of the room.

“Should he really go alone?” Chuck asked Sarah.

“He’ll be fine. Besides do you really want to be there when they make up?” Sarah waited for him to understand what she was talking about.

“Uh, no. That would be no. Definitely, no. But I’m not so sure Casey realizes how bad Ellie’s hurting right now. I know my sister. She’s not going to get over this easy. She’s been lied to, left and hurt her entire life by people she loves. She’s not really going to believe anything John tells her at first. He’s really going to have to work to gain her trust back.”

While Chuck and Sarah debated the chances of Ellie and Casey staying together, Ellie was driving as fast as she could to get away from Casey. After driving for a couple of hours, she drove up to the cabin and parked. She had borrowed her friend Lynda’s car, because she needed to get away from Casey to think. If she thought Casey the Buy More guy could probably have found her, she knew Casey, the whatever-he-was, could find her. Getting out of the car, she grabbed suitcase and made her way up the stairs. Finding the key exactly where Lynda said it would be, she let herself in.

The cabin had a large living room, separated from the kitchen by a large counter. Lynda had also loaned Ellie the cabin. Her family had owned it for years, and luckily this weekend none of her family were using it. When Ellie had explained to her she needed to get away, Lynda hadn’t asked questions, just offered to trade Ellie cars and told her to the use the cabin for as long as she needed.

Ellie had then tracked her boss down and told her she finally needed the time off that she had kept offering her. Dr. Kirby had assumed it was to deal with Devon and their breakup. Ellie didn’t care what she thought.

Ellie walked down the hall to the master bedroom and put her clothes away. Grabbing the latest Erin Young novel she had purchased from the hospital gift shop, she made her way to the sofa and plopped down. She would read to keep her mind from thinking about Casey. She knew she needed to think about it, but she couldn’t do it right now.

While Ellie was losing herself in her book, Casey was making his way to the hospital parking lot. Pulling into the lot Casey spotted Ellie’s BMW in her parking space at the hospital. He knew it wouldn’t be this easy. She wasn’t at work. A call to the desk of the ER had confirmed that Dr. Bartowski was off for an unspecified amount of time. Her car being here meant that she had traded with someone currently on duty. He also knew that whoever it was wouldn’t be forthcoming with any information.

He was frustrated, angry and worried. This wasn’t just a normal fight between a couple. This was a fight between a couple where one of them was a spy and the other could be used at any time against him. He needed to find her, not only to make her understand that he wasn’t using her, but to make sure she was safe. Shaking his head, he drove off and headed back to his apartment. He was going to need intel.

Back at his apartment, Casey went over the names of all of Ellie’s friends that he had heard her mention. Narrowing the list, he found three of them were on duty that day and could have traded Ellie cars. Calling up the names of the three, he quickly eliminated two of them. Not only would Ellie need a car, she would need some place to go, where she didn’t need a lot of money. Two of the three were from out of town and wouldn’t offer much in options for Ellie to leave town. The third was born and raised in LA: Lynda Macy.

“Let’s see what the NSA has on you, doctor.” Ten minutes later, Casey sat back and smiled. Shutting down the computer equipment, he quickly packed a bag and called Walker.

“Found her,” He simply stated.

“Good. Where?” Sarah replied.

“She’s at a cabin in Big Bear. I’m leaving now. Not sure when I’ll be able to check in. You got things here?”

“Yeah, I’ll keep Chuck with me, and busy so he doesn’t freak out.”

“Thanks, Walker.”

“You’re welcome. Oh and Casey?”

“Yeah?”

“Good luck. You’re going to need it.”

Casey turned the vic out of the parking lot wondering what he was going to say or do to get Ellie back. He debated what to do and say the entire trip, finally reaching the cabin. He parked the suburban a short distance away, and made his way through the trees to the cabin.

His first task was to check for all exits. No way was Ellie going to pull the same stunt on him again. There was one front door and another at the back of the cabin. Casey knew how this was going down. He would knock at the front door, she would run to the back door and try to get away. Classic move. He made his way around to the front door.

It was pure luck that Ellie had been peeking out the bathroom window when she spotted Casey coming through the trees. He had checked the front and back of the cabin, looking for exits she was sure. Now he was coming around to the front. He was going to knock on the door and expect her to bolt for the back door. Well, he was in for a surprise.

Sure enough, a knock sounded at the front door. She could almost hear his footsteps as he made what he thought was a stealth retreat to the back door. Giving him time to get around to the back door, Ellie made her way quietly to the front door and carefully opened it. Peaking out and not seeing John anywhere around she made her way down the steps and into the yard. As soon as her feet touched ground, she bolted. She had made it several feet when her foot caught on a limb and she fell. Without thinking, she cried out and tried to brace herself for the fall.

John stood at the back door, wondering why Ellie hadn’t bolted. As he contemplated the various scenarios, he heard Ellie cry out from the front of the house. He was on the move before her cry stopped.

Running around the side of the house preparing to do battle with whoever or whatever had caused her to cry out in pain. He saw her ahead of him, she appeared to be alone and had obviously fallen. As she got back up off the ground, she turned and saw him looking at her. She hesitated and then took off again. Shaking his head at her decision to still try to outrun him, John took off after her. Seeing that he had caught up with her, Ellie stopped, keeping her back to him.

“Ellie, I can explain.” Casey gently grabbed her arm to keep her from running.

“I don’t want to hear it.” She tried to jerk out of his grip.

Casey grabbed her other arm, turned her back to him and pinned her in his arms. “Well tough, because you are going to listen. I can’t just let you keep thinking what I know you’re thinking.”

“And exactly what would that be? Is this another thing about you that I don’t know? You’re a mind reader?” She hated herself for how she felt with his arms around her. Her body was betraying her and nothing her mind said would make it see that it shouldn’t love being there.

“No. But I don’t have to be. You’re thinking that I used you to be close to Chuck and our mission. That I never cared. That you were nothing to me but a tool.” He tightened his grip, wanting to get her as close to him as he could. Because he knew there was a good chance he might never have her there again.

“Well, look at that, you can read minds.” She struggled more. “Why can’t you leave me alone now? This should be a relief to you.”

“What the hell are you talking about?” he growled, sounding a little angrier than he intended. Anger at himself, never at her.

“I know now. So you don’t have to pretend to care about me for your cover.”

In one quick movement he had her turned and facing him. “That was never what this was about. Never. I do care about you. You have meant more to me than anyone else ever has. Tell me how I can prove it to you. I’ll do it, say it, whatever it takes. But the one thing I won’t do is give up. I won’t let you go, Ellie.”

“You don’t get it, do you? You’re good. I’ll give you that. You want me to tell you what to say or do and you’ll do it? Like I would believe it. I know now what a good actor you are Casey, God knows you had me fooled for a long time.” When she looked him in the eye and said, “I will never believe another word that comes out of your mouth again.”, he knew that he had lost her.

“I’m not going away, Ellie. Even if I could, I wouldn’t. So don’t think this is over. It’s not, not by a long shot. I’m going to get you back.” The certainty in voice caused Ellie to shiver.

“You’re awfully sure of yourself aren’t you?” She retorted, trying to sound unimpressed.

Closing more space between them, he leaned down and whispered in her ear, “Yes. Because I love you, and I know you love me. You’re mine Ellie. I always keep what’s mine.”

“Please, go.” she said, taking a few steps back to put distance between them again.

“Not going to happen. It’s gotten dark out there. We’ll stay here tonight and make our way home in the morning.” She noticed how he said ‘we’ and ‘home’ like it was a normal thing for him to say. Like it was real, instead of some make believe life that he was living in order to do his job.

Knowing she couldn’t win this round, she threw up her hands.

“Fine, whatever. Just stay away from me.” She made her way over to the kitchen and began to look for something to fix for dinner.

She pulled out the ingredients she had brought to make her chili recipe. It was supposed to make enough to feed her for the few days that she was staying. She might as well go ahead and make it.

“I’m making chili. You can take it or leave it.” She told him without looking up from the vegetables she was chopping.

“Chili sounds good. Can I do anything to help?” He started to walk towards the kitchen.

When she put her hand out, he stopped. “No. I’ve got it. Just stay out of here. If you want to be useful, you could bring in some wood and make a fire. I assume they teach you people how to build fires.” He didn’t miss the sarcastic tone she used on the words you people.

“Yeah, I know how to build a fire. Do you have a flash light?”

“There’s one in my bag in the bedroom,” She replied without really thinking that she had just given him permission to go into her bedroom and through her things.

John went into the bedroom and looked at the bags on the bed. Ruling out her makeup case, he went towards the larger of the two bags. He reached his hand down into the side pocket and pulled out the flashlight along with several letters that immediately scattered themselves all over the floor. Bending down to pick them up, he noticed they were addressed to Ellie. As he tried to put them back into some reasonable order, one of them fell open.

Ellie had just finished sautéing the vegetables, when John came storming back into the room. Seeing what he held in his hand, her face immediately paled.

“Damn it, Ellie!” he demanded. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

 

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