Bodie/DoylePosted to Discovered in a Live Journal - for the Discovered in a Bleak Midwinter challenge.
The sun was a round ball behind the veil of clouds that covered the city. It didn’t give much light and definitely no heat. It was rayless, like he was the moment. Bodie snorted as he raced down the stairs to the Capri. He was definitely missing the heat in this bleak midwinter, both types – ray and Ray.
Doyle had been undercover, which was torture enough when they were separated for any length of time, but he had just missed his last two check-ins, which was beyond what the Geneva Convention allowed for worried partners – way beyond the bounds of allowable torture. Fortunately for Cowley though, he decided to send Bodie to investigate the whereabouts of his errant partner – announcing this just in time to stop Bodie exploding in his office.
Leaving rubber behind, the Capri slewed out of the car park and headed for the pub that Doyle was using as his regular as a dock worker. Fortunately, it was one that Bodie was already known in, having laid the groundwork for himself in the past few weeks. That rayless sun haunted him as he drove, leaving him driving through gloom and drizzle. His imagination ran with the image, taking him on a journey to a rayless future. He pushed the car harder, willing it to get him there sooner, faster, before……….
He clamped hard on that thought at the same time he clamped on the brakes. It would do no-one any good if he screamed up to the pub and then raced in like a madman. Cool, keep it cool. Exactly as he told his partner to be. Except that boat sailed a long time ago. He wasn’t cool when it came to his partner and hadn’t been for a long time. The sun may be rayless, but he wasn’t going to be – he needed that sun, that ray, that sunshine….
It was a different man who walked into the pub. A casual onlooker would look up and then go back to their beer, but someone who knew what to look for would see past the ease and find a man on a mission. Bodie was good at casual, but he was far from it. Every sense was open to finding out something about his partner. If it was just a glitch in the reporting schedule, he knew Doyle would kill him if he blew the op by coming in heavy-handed.
He soon found out it was more than a glitch. The pub gossip, a weasely little man with nothing better to do with his time than drink too much and talk even more, fairly jumped him when he walked in the door.
“Have you ‘eard?” he gushed over Bodie, who faltered as a gust of alcohol-drowned breath blasted him. A deep breath over his shoulder gave Bodie a chance to recapture his balance and some slightly fresher air, in preparation to elbowing past the man and to a free table he sighted at the back of the bar. Before he could move though, the drunk continued.
“Dat guy you talked to – the one wif da hair” he slurred all over Bodie, “he’s a cop!” This last part was said with a stagger as the drunk leaned in to speak confidentially, only to find that Bodie had stepped back. Bodie was secretly stunned, but kept his cool and asked indifferently “So I guess he got what he deserved then”, dreading the answer he was sure would follow.
The drunk shrugged, again knocking himself off balance, before recovering and continuing. “Dunno. But I ‘ear that he’s not well and not long for this …..” he replied with a sweeping arm that managed to knock the beer out of another patron’s hands. Said patron was not happy and grabbed the drunk, beginning an all-in brawl which Bodie ignored, whilst pondering the truth of what was shared.
He knew the truth when he heard it, even when it came from a drunk, so the problem was what to do next? Whatever it was, he had to do it soon, or his world would be rayless for good – nice weather or not.
With the pub in uproar, it was easy enough for Bodie to sidle out surreptitiously and race back to his car, where he checked in with HQ. A few minutes later and with a suspected location for the gang that Doyle had infiltrated clearly in mind, the car screeched out onto the road, in a desperate race against the clock.
Reason won over as he approached the grungy warehouse. Going in all guns blazing could get his partner killed, if he wasn’t already…… Bodie quickly clamped down on that thought …. no way he was ready to consider that, no way at all. Parking the Capri a few buildings away, he stealthily made his way to the best vantage to view the target building. Making a fast assessment of the entrances and vantage points, he pinpointed the best entry point and made it there quickly, quietly and unobserved.
The empty space where glass had once been, gave both a good insight into the building and no barrier to a fast and quiet entry. Seeing only boxes piled high just inside, he quickly gained entry and using this screen, moved along silently to a point where he could clearly see the rest of the warehouse.
When he first saw a body on the ground, he had to stifle the impulse to run over and check. Further visual scans into the gloomy interior resulted in the discovery of more unmoving bodies – three, four, five and no other sign of movement.
Deciding it was worth the risk, Bodie stepped out onto the warehouse floor proper, whilst also drawing his gun and was just able to recognise that none of the bodies were his partner when a voice came out of the silence. “About…… bloody……. time…….”
On the first intake of breath, Bodie had turned to face the other end of the boxes, with his tringer finger tensed to shoot. There, sprawled on the floor with his back slumped against said boxes was his Sunshine. Simultaneously, the sun broke through the gloom and shone a light on the warehouse floor, which gave Bodie a clearer picture of the situation, even as he re-holstered his gun.
Doyle looked terrible. He had been badly beaten, looked exhausted and was holding himself carefully. Breathing was an effort for him and Bodie quickly recognised that his ribs were dodgy, but Doyle’s injuries appeared more uncomfortable than a threat to life. After quickly checking the five bodies sprawled around the warehouse and discovering they were no threat, he moved to his partner’s side, whilst checking in and calling for an ambulance. He shook his head in disbelief as he moved – battered and bloody, but his sunshine still took out five men!
A broad grin crossed his face as he crouched beside his partner, and ran a finger gently down the side of his face. “What’s all this then?, he said with a cheeky lilt, “here I am missing you and you’re off having fun with other men.”
Doyle took a careful breath, not moving too much, but managed to gasp out “What … do … you…. Expect? …. You…. weren’t….. here ….. to …… party….. with.” A cough then caught him by surprise and he rolled onto the floor in agony, Bodie’s grin disappearing in the wake of his partner’s pain. A soothing arm stroking down his back helped Doyle to move past the pain, as their backup and the ambulance arrived.
Bodie stood up to give the ambulance crew room to move, but did not get far as Doyle grabbed his arm. “Don’t go” he gasped. “Not going anywhere” Bodie replied fiercely. The ambulance crew quickly assessed Doyle’s injuries and prepared to take to him to hospital. As Cowley arrived on scene and demanded a report, Bodie quickly brought him up to speed, never letting go of his partner’s hand, as they walked to the ambulance.
Once safely ensconced in the back with his partner and on their way to hospital, he was surprised to hear the ambulance man say “Nice to see the sun out, after all that gloom.” “Yes”, Bodie replied, with his eyes never leaving his lightly dozing partner, “but even without, I have all the sunshine I’ll ever need.”