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Hard Targets

Hard Targets

Author: Billy

 

Ratings: PG-15

Summary:  The A team become the hunted for sport, but it’s a race against time for a member of the team. 

Warnings/Notes: Mild swearing and usual A Team violence and yes, this fic does contain Amy.

Disclaimer:  I don’t own the A Team and I’ve not made a penny from this, I just do it for the jazz! 

Words: 15,864

 

 

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Part 1

 

It was early morning in LA.  The sun was already shining, sending a red glow across the city.  A balding old man, quite a portly fellow, wearing a tatty brown cardigan over a blue shirt, was pottering about in his warehouse; he was currently bent over a broom sweeping the floor.  The large room contained a couple of chairs and a table to one side and boxes scattered about the room.  There was a door at the back, which led to another room, his office, and beside the main shutters to the warehouse, which once open were large enough for a vehicle to drive in, there was another door, basically the front door to the warehouse.  

 

There was a knock at the door.  The old man stopped what he was doing when he heard the noise that shattered his silence.

 

“Hello, is there anyone there?”  A woman’s voice could be heard from outside, slightly muffled as it called through the shutter. 

 

The old man, opened the front door, to take a look outside.  There was a young woman, wearing a black eye with bruising down the left hand side of her face.  Without the bruising she would be quite pretty, she was blonde, in her mid twenties, wearing a tight pair of blue denim jeans and a red blouse.  She was carrying a large sports bag, which she held awkwardly, as if it was heavy. 

 

“What do you want?” the old man asked grumpily.

 

“Is this unit 17?” She asked in a young, innocent voice.

 

“Yes, it is.” The old man walked back into the warehouse and the young woman hesitantly followed him.

 

“I was told to meet someone here, sir.”

 

“Well there’s no one here missy, except me of course and I don’t recall agreeing to meeting anyone.”

 

The young woman sighed.

 

“But the guy at the Chinese laundry told me to meet someone here.”  She sounded disappointed.  “I’ve traipsed across half of LA this week, from hot dog stands to a laundry shop, I’m starting to think this is a joke.”

 

“What’s in the bag missy?” The old man ignored her complaints.

 

“Oh nothing!”  She grabbed at it protectively and pulled it closer to herself.  “Look, do you mind if I wait?  Just in case someone shows up.  Maybe I’m a little early.”

 

“Wait?”  The old man puffed as he started to lift a heavy box from one side of the room to the table.  He was having difficulty with it. 

 

“Here, let me help you with that!”  And the young woman dropped her bag and helped the old man with the heavy box.  “Gosh, this is heavy, what’s in it?” 

 

“Oh, just bits of old junk.”

 

“So, do you mind if I wait?”

 

“No, no, not if you want to hire the A Team.”  The old man stood up straight and smiled at the young lady.

 

“The A Team?  You know about the A Team?”

 

“Sure do Ma’am,” Hannibal held out his hand to shake the young ladies hand, no longer bending over like an old man.  “My name’s Hannibal Smith!” She still looked at Hannibal strangely, ‘surely this old man can’t be anything to do with the A Team’ she thought as she took his hand and shook it.

 

“Face, BA, Amy, you can come out now!” Hannibal shouted as he started to take off his balding cap and fake grey hair to show his full head of silvery white hair.  He was still grinning.  Face, Amy and BA were waiting behind a door in the back room to the warehouse and gradually filed out of the door.

 

“Alls clear, Hannibal.  She wasn’t followed.” BA confirmed as he came out of the room.  Now that the door was open, another door could be seen in the office, that lead out of the warehouse.  BA had entered in this way, after keeping watch. 

 

“Sorry, ma’am, but we have to be sure you’re not being followed or anything and you’re who you say you are.”  Hannibal had pretty much revealed his true appearance by now and the young woman was now feeling more confident.  “This is Templeton Peck,” Face flashed his smiled; he was wearing his black leather jacket over a blue shirt and denim jeans.  “Amy Allen and BA Baracus.”  Amy smiled at the young woman as BA nodded at her. 

 

“I’m Christina, but call me Tina, OK?” Tina nervously spoke.

 

“Christina, nice name, ” Face flashed his smile again. 

 

Amy rolled her eyes at him from behind his back, ‘he’s at it again,’ she thought to herself.

 

“So, Tina, you’re saying that in your home town, there are some poachers that have been now using humans to hunt for sport?”  Amy was the first to interrogate the young woman.  “This could make a very interesting story.”

 

“Yeah, as I told Mr Lee, my brother and a couple of friends were rounded up from a bar in town and taken out to the woods, by these so called hunters, where they had to run for their lives.  Apparently they’ve got to make it back to the town to survive.”  Tina looked sad, almost about to cry.  “My brother never made it.” 

 

“Bored of hunting game, they’re hunting men for a sport.”  Hannibal summarised to the team.

 

“So how’d you come by that black eye?”  Face was intrigued as he’d been studying her otherwise pretty face.

 

“I had a run in with Charlie Felton, he seems to be the organiser.  Asking what he’d done with my brother.  I threatened to go to the cops, not that I’d have much luck, they’re either all bought or scared of him”.

 

“Yeah, sounds like the usual story,” Face mumbled, aiming his comments more at the team than the young woman.

 

“What about the state police or the FBI?”  Amy questioned.  “Surely they’d be interested in something like this?”

 

“I just don’t have enough evidence, we’ve never found my brother’s body, and his friends are too scared to talk…. And he gave me this as a reminder, so he called it.”  She gently put her hand to her face and winced slightly, it was still sore to touch.  “Look I’ve rustled up as much money as I could, I know it’s not what you asked, but you’ve got to stop these men!”  Tina handed the bag to Hannibal, who handed it to Face to count.   He shook his head at the contents.

 

“Sounds like this guy needs hunting himself!”  BA growled punching his right fist into his left hand.

 

“There’s just under five grand here.”  Face flicked through a wedge of hundred dollar bills.  Hannibal nodded.  Although they’d be practically working for peanuts he didn’t like the idea of this guy, Felton, using men for game. 

 

“How many are there Tina?”  Hannibal asked curiously.  “Of Felton and his men?”

 

“Oh, I’d say there are about six of them, I think.”

 

“I like those odds.”  Hannibal grinned.  His eyes twinkled; he was on the jazz.

 

“Oh Man!”  BA mumbled.

 

“Face, spring Murdock.  Amy, I’m sorry kid, but you’re not coming with us!”

 

“What!”  Amy showed her disappointment, disapproving of Hannibal’s decision.  “Oh come on, this is going to make a great story!” 

 

“Kid, it’s going to be too dangerous.  We’re going hunting.”  Hannibal grinned at that point.  “I don’t think there is gonna be much we’ll need you to do.  I think it’s safer for you and us if you stay here.”

 

“Oh Hannibal!”  She tried to plead but could see it wouldn’t work; she looked at Face and BA for support but could see they were in agreement with Hannibal.   “You’ll give me the story afterwards won’t you?” 

 

“Of course I will kid” Hannibal grinned.  “Look, if you want to be involved, dig up as much information as possible about this guy Felton.  We might find it useful, especially when it comes to handing him over to the cops.”

 

“Oh OK.”  Amy said still disappointed but couldn’t really disobey Hannibal’s orders; it was a condition to her being on the team. “Since returning from Arizona, Decker has been crawling all over me anyway.”

 

“Really?”  Face smiled at her and gave her a mischievous look. “Maybe you should rephrase that?”

 

“Funny, Face!” Amy smiled sarcastically back, “ I suppose, it isn’t as if I haven’t got enough to do at the office already.”  Being on the A Team and holding a full time job at the LA Courier-Express definitely kept Amy busy. 

 

“Promise me, you’ll call me if you run into trouble or anything?”

 

Hannibal didn’t answer he just kind of nodded which didn’t reassure Amy. 

 

“Face?”

 

“Yeah, we promise!”  Face replied giving her a wink but he’d already started to concentrate on Tina.

 

“Tina, you OK getting yourself out of here.”  Hannibal asked.

 

“Yeah, my car is outside.  Look, I’m staying out of town for a bit, until you guys have cleared this up.”

 

Hannibal was slightly puzzled by this but then the more he thought about it, it made sense.  He didn’t even want Amy near these slimeballs, so he could understand Tina not wanting to return home for a while. 

 

“OK, good idea, I totally agree.  We’ll come across these slimeballs easily enough.” Hannibal was already starting to look forward to finding them.  Face handed him a cigar, he bit the end off and put it in his mouth.  Face held out a lighter and lit the end of it as Hannibal puffed away. 

 

“Face, we’ll meet you in an hour with Murdock, lock up will ya?”  Hannibal threw Face a set of keys.  “Amy, we’ll give you a lift back to your office.”

 

Face waved at Hannibal as they walked out of the warehouse and round the corner to where the van was hidden.  Face put his arm around Tina and escorted her to her car.  She didn’t disapprove of his gesture; she actually smiled back at him. 

 

“Maybe after all this is over, you and I could go out for dinner?”  Face flashed her his smile, using his Faceman charm.  “I know this perfect little Italian restaurant.”

 

 

Part 2

 

“Nurse, I’ve come to check on H M Murdock.  Apparently he’s got some kind of flu virus.”

 

“Flu virus?”

 

“Yes, yes, highly contagious strain of it apparently.”  Face was dressed in his white coat, clipboard in hand and flashing his usual charming smile at the young nurse.  Luckily, he always managed to pick a pretty nurse to scam his way through the hospital.

 

“Well, Doctor, he seemed alright this morning, when I gave him his meds.” The nurse replied a little confused.

 

“Well, it also appears quickly.”  Face rapidly responded.  “If I could just take a look at him, it might be that he needs to be quarantined.”  How many times had he used this scam?

 

“Quarantine?”

 

“Yes, yes,” Face said more urgently.  He grabbed a wheelchair that was in the corridor unused and ushered the nurse gradually towards Murdock’s room.  He knew where he was going of course.  “Look, you might need this.” And gave her a white mask to put over her mouth and nose.  The nurse looked at Face rather puzzled. “Highly contagious remember?  Do you want to be off work for weeks?”

 

The nurse quickly put on her mask, as did Face.

 

“Right, I’ll go in.” He mumbled under the mask.  “You wait out here!” 

 

Murdock was as usual sitting playing one of his arcade games. 

 

“Murdock!”  Face rushed over to him.  “You’ve got the flu, highly contagious!”  As he ripped the joystick from his hand and lead him to the wheelchair. 

 

Faceman, I was winning then!”

 

“Come on, we don’t have much time!”  Face was getting a little impatient.

 

Murdock started coughing and spluttering aggressively as Face wheeled him out of the room. 

 

“Yes, yes, definitely a contagious form.  Very serious too.  I’ll have to put him in quarantine.”  He mumbled still under the mask to the nurse.  “If you could just sign this.”  Face handed her a clipboard with some fake release papers on it.  “I’ll get him back to you as soon as he’s free of the virus”.

 

“But surely you need a doctor…” the nurse protested slightly.

 

“Nurse, your signature will be quite adequate, or do you want me to wait in the middle of the corridor for Murdock to contaminate the whole hospital, whilst you go find a busy doctor?” 

 

The nurse didn’t argue as the doctor stood in front of her was making total sense, besides she remembered he had a trusting smile and signed the form.

 

“Thank you, he’ll be back soon, I promise.”  Face smiled, but it was wasted as he still had the mask on.  He wheeled Murdock into the elevator, who was still coughing and sneezing.  The elevator door closed behind them. 

 

“You can knock it off now, Murdock!”

 

 

 

Tina had driven her car to a small diner; she needed some breakfast and lots of hot coffee.  She parked her car and looked at the bag that sat on the passenger seat.  It was a similar bag to the one she’d handed over to the A Team.  Placing the bag on her lap, she looked at its contents, smiling to herself and then zipped the bag back up.  She got out of her car and placed the bag in the trunk. 

 

After making sure the whole car was locked up she walked towards the diner.  There was something she had to do first though, before she could have her breakfast. 

 

There was a payphone just outside the diner that she could use.  Tina dialled the number she had been given and it answered almost immediately.

 

“Felton?” 

 

“Yes.”

 

“It’s Tina.”

 

“Ah, Christina.  Did it go well?” The man had a Texas accent.

 

“Yes, I’ve been on a darn goose chase the whole week.”

 

“I thought as much, they’d want to make sure you were legitimate.  Did they take the bait though?”

 

“Yes, they’ve taken the cash.  They are on their way.  They said something about springing Murdock?”

 

“Good.”  Felton seemed pleased on the other end of the phone.

 

“But the girl, Amy, she’s not going.  Hannibal said it would be too dangerous.”

 

“Well, we’ll have to see about that.  Good job, Christina.  I hope the money I gave you is satisfactory?”

 

“Yes, fine, thank you.”  Tina nervously looked over to where her car was parked.  All of a sudden she didn’t like the idea of being too far away from all that cash, until it was secure in a bank account or something. 

 

“And I’m sorry about your eye.”

 

“You bastard.  Why did you have to hit me?”

 

“Because, it would pull on the old heart strings and make your story more believable sweetheart!”  He put the phone down, before she could say anymore.  He had all the information he required.  He had a smug smile on his face.  

 

Tina put down the handset and looked over to her car again.  She walked into the diner and placed herself by the window, so that she could keep an eye on her car.  Over breakfast she would decide which city to visit first and how she would spend her money.  This was a new start for her.  She’d done what Felton had paid her to do, with the story he’d given her, she’d hired the A Team.

 

 

 

BA and Hannibal had dropped off Amy at her office.  In the van, she’d still tried to persuade Hannibal that she should go on the case but to no avail. 

 

“Amy, what I have in mind, is going to be a military operation.  You’re just not trained for it.  It’ll be too dangerous, for you and the rest of the team.”

 

“OK, OK, I’ll see what I can dig up on Felton for you, instead.”

 

She’d reluctantly agreed, knowing that Hannibal was probably right and headed up to her office to be greeted by a mountain of work.  Maybe she could use this time to catch up with her real job she thought to herself.  She looked at her word-processor, a note was stuck to it, written in Zachary’s handwriting; it read:

 

‘Colonel Decker called again.’

 

She picked up the note and irritably threw it in the bin.  Does he ever give up?

 

Around 10.30am her stomach had started to rumble, with the early start meeting Tina, she’d only managed to drink coffee and her stomach was now telling her it needed something more substantial.  She grabbed her purse and headed out of the office, shouting at Zachary on the way.

 

“Zach, I’m going to get some lunch, take a message if anyone calls!  Except Decker, tell him I’ve left the country!”

 

“OK,” Zachary chuckled at Amy’s comment.

 

“Do you want anything, while I’m down there?”

 

Erm… no, I’m fine, thanks.”

 

Amy headed to her usual coffee shop that was just across the street from the LA Courier-Express building.

 

“Good Morning, Miss Allen, you’re a little early today.”

 

“Yeah, I was up and about early today and haven’t managed to have breakfast yet.  I’ll have my usual please, Tom, oh and a doughnut.” She smiled over to the old guy behind the counter.  “Oh and make the coffee strong, please, I think I could do with the caffeine.”

 

Minutes later, Tom handed her the order and took the cash from her. 

 

“Have a nice day, Miss Allen.”

 

“Thanks, with the workload I have, I’m not sure it’s going to be nice though.”

 

Amy wandered back across the street to her office building, sipping her strong hot coffee.  She was about only a couple of yards from the entrance to the building when a blue sedan pulled up along side her.

 

“Excuse me, lady!”  A voice called out from the car in a Texas accent.  Amy turned and pointed to herself as if to ask ‘are you talking to me?’

 

“Yeah, sorry, could you give me directions?”  The man got out of the back of the car, which Amy thought was a little strange, usually the driver would be asking directions.  “I’m a bit lost.”  The man, rather tall with strawberry blonde hair wearing a cowboy hat, brown checked shirt, sleeveless brown jacket and jeans, was now within feet of her.  Before she realised what was happening, he had a firm grip of one of her arms and a gun digging into her side. 

 

“Get in the car, Miss Allen, and I won’t hurt you.”

 

She was about to throw her coffee with her free arm into his face, but another guy had got out of the car and already had this arm in his grip.  She was forced to drop her coffee and lunch on the pavement, she struggled to break free but the two men were too strong for her, and dragged her into the car quickly so that passer-by’s didn’t really notice the struggle.  Both men sat either side of her.  As soon as they took their seats and shut the doors, the car sped off.  

 

“Who are you?”  Amy asked angrily still struggling in the back of the car, with the two men. 

 

“Charlie Felton.  Pleased to meet you.”  The man with the cowboy hat, who’d originally got out of the car, grinned at her.  “Gosh, you are darn pretty aren’t you?”  Staring into her deep brown eyes, he tried to stroke her hair off her face but she pulled away, shuddering at the thought of his touch.  “How those four boys keep their hands off you, I’ll never know!” He leaned into her neck to try and kiss it; he could smell her sweet perfume. Amy pulled her head away from Felton, knocking into the guy next to her, who also grabbed her and with her right foot she stamped on Felton’s left foot hard with the heel of her boot and simultaneously pushed him away with her hands.

 

“Get off me you pig!”  Amy was scared now, really scared.  What were this man’s intentions?

 

“Ouch!  You bitch!”  And he smacked her across the face with the back of his hand.  Amy put her hand to her face; it was her lip that hurt most but she had a slight feeling she’d be wearing a similar black eye to Tina by the end of the car journey, if this struggle continued.

 

 

 

Part 3

 

“Shut up, fool!”

 

BA had been driving nearly two hours now, sticking to the speed limits of the roads.  The last town they’d past through had been practically half an hour ago.  They were now on a lone stretch of road with woodlands and vast countryside either side of them.  They were pretty much out in the middle of nowhere.  Murdock had been chattering about everything and anything since he’d got in the van and was now starting to test BA’s patience.

 

“Murdock, you might want to cool it for a bit.”  Face intervened.  “Otherwise BA’s going to go past the point of no return.  And I can’t promise I can save you.”

 

“But Faceman, just seeing all these trees again, reminded me of my days as a lumberjack.”

 

“Fool, you ain’t ever been a lumberjack!”

 

“I have!”

 

“And don’t even think about singing!” BA growled just as Murdock opened his mouth to start singing.

 

“Murdock!” Face was also starting to get agitated by the two of them bickering.

 

“Guys, simmer down.”  Hannibal was starting to regret not bringing Amy; she usually kept them under control in the van.  He was trying to think, put his plan right in his head.  He was about to pull out a cigar from his pocket, to help with his planning. 

 

“Ah man! I don’t believe it.  Hannibal, we got trouble.”  BA looked out of his side mirror, a patrol car, and its lights flashing, was pulling them over.  Hannibal looked out of his window and into his side mirror to also see the patrol car behind them. 

 

“OK, everybody relax.  Might be something simple, lets not draw attention to ourselves.  Pull over BA.”  The cigar would have to wait, he thought.

 

Face nervously checked his gun and Murdock slipped his in the back of his pants. 

 

BA pulled the van over onto the shoulder and the patrol car followed in behind.  The police officer got out of his car and walked up to the driver’s window to see BA scowling back at him. 

 

“Sir, can you step out the van, please?” The police officer drew his gun out of its holster, clicking off the safety.  “In fact, all of you, out of the van now!” Back up had arrived for the would be cop, from the woods.  Two more men had emerged armed with automatic rifles but dressed in jeans and checked shirts.  They opened the side door of the van, aiming their weapons at it as they slid it open and Face and Murdock smiled at them holding their hands up.  

 

“Ah, man!”  BA growled.

 

All four members of the team got out of the van with their hands above their heads.  One of the men shot the two front tyres of the van.  BA looked at the man and growled.

 

“You’ll pay for that, sucker!”

 

Whilst two men had their weapons pointing at the team, the man dressed as a cop, searched the team individually clearing them of their own guns, tossing them on the ground, away from the team.  He came to Hannibal last.

 

“Which one of you is Felton?”  Hannibal asked trying to light a cigar, but the cop snatched it from his mouth and threw it on the ground. 

 

“Oh he’s coming!” The guy in the cop outfit replied smugly.  “Oh, looks like that’s him now.”  A blue sedan pulled up into the lay-by, sending dust into the air and three men got out of the vehicle, making it six men in total. 

 

‘At least Tina had told some truth, there was at least six of them,’ Hannibal thought.

 

“Well, well, looks like we’ll be hunting the A Team today boys!”  Felton bellowed joyfully at their catch.  The five other men laughed at his comment. 

 

“Ah, you must be the weasel they call Felton.”  Hannibal slyly remarked back as he scanned the five other men.  They were dressed in similar attire to Felton, checked shirts, jeans and leather boots all except for the man wearing the cop’s uniform.  They were all pretty stocky in build too. 

 

“That’s me, Smith!”  Felton didn’t rise to Hannibal’s comments; he knew he had an ace up his sleeve.  “Hey, but Smith, I thought you didn’t leave a member of your team behind?” 

 

Hannibal opened his mouth and was about to say that he hadn’t in his usual witty context, but was left speechless as he watched Felton fiercely pull Amy out of the car.

 

“Why you, mangy…” Murdock said angrily as Amy was dragged from out of the car.  Face and Murdock both showed anger in their expressions and edged forward.  BA and Hannibal put their arms out to hold them back as Felton’s men raised their weapons towards them.  BA restrained Murdock as Hannibal restrained Face.

 

“If you’ve hurt one hair on her head!” Murdock was fuming.

 

“Why, I wouldn’t dream of hurting a pretty little thing like this.”  Felton had hold of Amy firmly in his right arm and with his other arm swept her short hair off of her neck, bending in to kiss it.  “God damn, how do you boys resist yourselves?”  Amy shuddered at Felton’s touch. 

 

This angered Face and Murdock even more, again BA and Hannibal restrained them although Hannibal was starting to think ‘I’ll be the one needing restraining soon, if this slimeball carries on’.  He didn’t like seeing woman being mistreated at the best of times, especially Amy.

 

“God damn, she’s the sweetest thing!”  Felton said as he undid the top button of her blouse so that he could make her left shoulder bare, sweeping her bra strap off her shoulder as he gently stroked her skin as he did so.  He loved the reaction he could see in the men’s faces before him.  He bent in to kiss her shoulder again. 

 

“Get off me you creep!”  Amy started to fight back.  Another man assisted Felton as he kept Amy’s neck and shoulder bare, another of the men handed Felton something, the guys couldn’t make it out, until they saw him stick the syringe into her shoulder and empty it’s contents. 

 

Amy felt an ice-cold sensation in her shoulder gradually spread down her left arm and across her breast, until it felt normal again.

 

“Simmons, go get the cash out of that van!”  Felton ordered as he threw the emptied syringe under the van and then violently pushed Amy towards the team.  Face and Hannibal caught her as she stumbled into their path. 

 

“You OK kid?” Face had her head in his hands, brushing the hair from her face and then pulled her close to comfort her.  He could see the fear in her face and her slightly swollen lip. 

 

“Yes, yes, I think so.”  She whispered.  She knew she was safer now with the team, comforted by Face’s hold. 

 

“He didn’t…” Face’s mind raced to what else that creep could have done to her. 

 

“No.” She gently pulled away from Face’s embrace so that she could place her bra strap back on her shoulder and do up the top button on her blouse that Felton had undone.  She shuddered again at the thought of the man’s touch.

 

“Yeah it’s here!”  Simmons came out of the van with the bag full of the cash Tina had given them.

 

“Great,” Face mumbled, mainly to himself, as he saw the cash leave the van.  “All this for nothing!”

 

“Just so you know, this is how we tracked you, just to make sure you were on your way.  Got a little device hidden in the bag.”  Simmons gloated as he passed the bag to Felton.

 

“Well, there goes my date with Tina!”  Face mumbled to himself, realising the girl had been all part of the scam. 

 

“Well, boys, you’ve got two hours until your pretty little lady there, starts foaming at the mouth!”  Felton bellowed nastily.  As Felton said his words, Face set the timer on his watch for two hours.  “I got the antidote right here, when you guys want to give in!”  Felton opened up his jacket and inside they could see another syringe in a case sitting in his inside pocket. 

 

“Felton, you want to hope I don’t get the opportunity to take that antidote from you!”  Hannibal threatened.

 

Felton ignored Hannibal’s threats.  He felt the stronger man; he was going to have fun today, hunting the A Team.  All other men they’d hunted had got boring, he’d wanted something more challenging, and what better than a team of trained soldiers.

 

“You got twenty minutes, Smith, head start, then me and my boys here,” Felton pointed to the five other men, “are gonna hunt ourselves the A Team.  Oh and the nearest hospital is in that direction,” Felton pointed into the woods, “about three hours away on foot.”  All of the men laughed viciously at Felton’s words.  “You and your team make it to that hospital, Smith, and you’re safe, you’ve won!”

 

‘Twenty minutes’ Hannibal thought to himself, ‘why do these creeps never learn?’

 

“And if we don’t?” Hannibal asked. 

 

“Well, lets just say, me and my boys here get some target practice.”  Felton grinned smugly, “Oh, don’t worry, I’ll give your sweet little lady there, the antidote first, so she can watch and then me and her are gonna have our own little party!”

 

Amy cringed at that thought and grabbed Murdock’s arm and held it tightly, Murdock responded by putting his arm around her. 

 

“Don’t worry, Sweetheart, that creep is not touching you again!”

 

Hannibal took the lead and started off into the woods.  He’d listened enough to Felton’s words and didn’t care to listen further, he couldn’t afford to lose his cool.

 

Face followed Hannibal and the rest of the team into the woods.  “Damn, I wish I’d put my boots on now!”  He looked down at his black Italian leather shoes.

 

Hannibal, I’m sorry, I did as you said, honest,” Amy had let go of Murdock and caught up with Hannibal.  “They got me outside of my office when I went to get some lunch.”

 

“I know kid, I know.”  Hannibal looked at Amy with concern. 

 

“I’m so annoyed with myself, I’m usually so careful too, watching my back.  Damn!”

 

“It’s okay, kid.”  Hannibal smiled at her and then turned to BA, taking off his white safari jacket. “BA, get me two strong branches so we can make a stretcher.”  BA nodded and ran off to search for Hannibal’s request.  Hannibal then turned to Murdock and Face.  “One of you, lend me your jacket!” 

 

Murdock was the first to respond, instantly taking off his jacket and handing it to Hannibal.  Face, secretly relieved he didn’t have to part with his leather jacket, ran off to assist BA. 

 

“What?”  Amy watched with a puzzled expression on her face, as they all sprung into action.  “Why a stretcher?”

 

“Whatever those guys have injected you with, Kid, we don’t need it spreading around your blood stream faster by you over exerting yourself,” Hannibal said as he zipped up Murdock’s jacket. “So if we carry you, that should keep your heart rate low and stop the blood from taking the poison around your body quicker, hopefully buying us some more time.

 

Knowing that time was of the essence, BA and Face quickly returned with two strong tree limbs long enough to make a stretcher, removing any unnecessary branches on them, leaving two sturdy poles.

 

Hannibal and Face stood beside one another and started to thread a branch each up the inside of Hannibal’s jacket, pushing it all the way through to the sleeves end.   They then repeated the same motion with Murdock’s jacket, at the other end of the strong branches, creating a makeshift stretcher.  Face then decided to lay his jacket over the two jackets in the middle part of the stretcher, to give extra support.

 

“What do you think that creep’s injected me with?” Amy asked as she watched the four men work on their task.

 

“I don’t know, Kid, but we’ll find out soon enough.  They wanted you along so you’d slow us down, and I get the feeling they want to hunt us four.” He gestured to the rest of the team.  “They know you don’t have the training we have. They also now know the direction we need to head too, which also gives them an advantage.”

 

Once satisfied the stretcher was complete, Hannibal gestured for her to lie on it.

 

Hannibal, I can walk for a while, surely?”  Amy complained, reluctant to lie down on the stretcher.  She felt fine and didn’t want to be a burden already to the guys.

 

Hannibal’s voice became stern. “Get on the stretcher, young lady. That’s an order.”

 

“Okay, okay!”  Amy eased herself on the stretcher.  “Will this hold me?”

 

“Of course, you’re not that heavy are you kid?”

 

“Oh I’d say about 134 pounds” Face winked at her. 

 

“131 actually!”  Amy replied sarcastically back at Face. 

 

Hannibal picked up the two front ends, positioning them behind him. BA took the rear, and they started to walk. Hannibal strode as briskly as he could to take up a pace; they couldn’t waste time, they had to get a move on.

 

As Hannibal walked, he ordered.

 

“Murdock, I want you to split off and send our friends on a goose chase.  Face, take the rear and make sure we don’t leave any tracks.  Lets get moving guys, we don’t have much time.”

 

 

 

 

Part 4

 

Over half an hour into walking through the woods, BA and Hannibal put Amy’s stretcher down and looked at her with some concern.  As she sat up, she felt her own head, pinching the bridge of her nose as if to ease the pain.  She had a headache.  Face knelt down beside her and put his hand to her forehead. He could see beads of sweat forming in her hairline.

 

“You’re getting a fever.”  

 

“I feel fine.”  Amy lied, as she didn’t like the worried tone of Face’s voice. She moved her left arm in a circular movement, her shoulder felt stiff and ached. 

 

“May I?” Face swept her blouse gently back to show her left shoulder and he could see a bluish bruise where the poison had been injected.  ‘This was not a good sign’ he thought.

 

Murdock emerged in front of them, sweaty and panting from his fast paced trek. “They should be heading east for a bit Colonel.  They’ll be knocking on Woody Woodpeckers door before they reach us.”  He grinned smugly.

 

“Good work, Captain. Let’s get a move on, we’re moving at a good rate considering,” Hannibal glanced at Amy, “I bet we’ve opened the gap by about ten, fifteen minutes, so hopefully that makes us about half hour in front of them.  But even with their detour, they know which direction we need to head.”  Hannibal looked at Amy again.  You alright, kid?”

 

“I’m fine.” She insisted as she laid herself back down on the stretcher. 

 

Face went to pick up the front end of the stretcher, as he felt it was his turn to relieve Hannibal of the duty, but Murdock intervened, insisting he would do it. 

 

“But Murdock, you’ve probably trekked twice as far as us already, to send them guys on a goose chase, you need a rest.”

 

“Its okay, Faceman, I got Amy!” Murdock insisted and grinned at Amy.  “Me lady, your carriage awaits you!” He said in a British accent bowing at her.

 

Amy just about mustered up a chuckle at Murdock.  BA took the other end insisting to Face that he would continue to carry the stretcher.  All of the men trod carefully but quickly to minimise the tracks they left, keeping their wits about them and their eyes peeled. 

 

Face caught up with Hannibal to discuss Amy’s condition, before he would return to the rear position of the group. 

 

“How’s she doing, Face?”

 

“Well she’s got a temperature and she’s lying about feeling fine.  Her eyes are definitely wincing at the light and I think she could really do with some water.” Face checked his watch again.  It didn’t matter how much he looked at it, the time was running out.

 

“Ok, well we better just keep an eye on her and move as fast as we can.”

 

“I don’t get it Hannibal, why did those bastards have to poison her?”

 

“They knew it would make us mad, Lieutenant, hoping to blur our vision, affect our performance.  Hell, he really doesn’t know us does he?” Hannibal chuckled slightly at that thought, his men were always focused and this would make them even more determined to succeed, but then his expression turned more serious.  “And as I said earlier, they know exactly what direction we’ve got to head in and it will slow us down.  We can’t risk not taking Amy to a hospital!”

 

….  

 

 

“This way!” Simmons beckoned the other men.

 

“Are you sure?” Felton wasn’t convinced in his tracker. 

 

“Yeah, these tracks are fresh.”

 

“It don’t feel like we’re going the right way to me.”  One of the men complained.

 

“Shut your noise, Perry!”  Simmons retorted.

 

The six men walked in single file, following Simmons, their rifles slung over their shoulders.  Watching and listening for any clues of the team they were hunting.  They’d been walking about half an hour now, following the tracks.  They heard a noise; it was a car passing on a road about ten feet away.  They looked through the trees and could see the road. 

 

“God damn you, Simmons!  They can’t have come to the main road!” Felton was furious.

 

“Sir, this is where their tracks lead.” 

 

“Damn they’re good.  They’ve sent us on some damn goose chase!”  Felton realised that this was going to be harder than first imagined.  “Simmons, head back to their van, you never know they maybe stupid enough to return there!”

 

“OK, Felton!” 

 

“The rest of you, let’s head for that damn hospital, it’s the only place they gotta go, otherwise their little lady is dead meat.”

 

 

 

Another twenty minutes had passed; the guys had walked in silence, giving the odd signals to one another. 

 

“Murdock!”  Amy cried.  “BA!  Put me down, I feel sick.” She’d started to feel worse in herself now and had tried to hold in the nausea for as long as she could but now she was afraid that she might be physically sick.  Her mouth had that watery sensation.  She wasn’t sure if it was the travelling on the stretcher or the poison that was making her feel this way, but either way, she felt sick.

 

Murdock and BA instantly put the stretcher down.  Murdock turned round glancing at Amy and then back up at BA.  BA nodded to Murdock as if to confirm that he’d continue walking up with Hannibal.  Murdock looked back at Amy.  Her face was pale and her whole body was starting to look clammy.  As she tried to get off the stretcher and stand up, Amy stumbled, hardly able to stand on her own feet. 

 

Face ran over to assist Murdock, showing an expression equal to Murdock’s of worry, as they helped her to sit on an old tree stump.  She put her head between her legs, hoping this would make herself feel better, but it didn’t.  She wanted to be sick, but she really didn’t want the guys to see her like this.  She hated being this burden they’d been provided with.  As she tried to get up and move away so her back would be to them, she realised she just couldn’t move. 

 

Face seeing that she was trying to stand up, helped her up and brushed her hair out of her face.  He tried to reassure her, as she bent over and emptied the contents of her stomach.  Which was not much, considering she actually hadn’t managed to eat all day. 

 

“Feel any better?” Face stroked her back as she leaned over.  She gently nodded in response.

 

For a brief moment, she felt better, wiping her mouth with the back of her hand, the taste of vomit in her mouth, she screwed up her face in disgust.  As she stood up and faced him, Face could see her eyes were watery and her skin was pale.  She wanted to cry, she wanted to get angry but she just didn’t have the energy.

 

“I really didn’t want you to see that.”

 

“Amy, I’ve seen a lot worse.”  Face winked at her, still holding her to steady her balance.

 

“Hey, want one of these?” Murdock handed her a packet of gum.

 

“Thanks, Murdock, you’re a life saver!” She took a piece of gum and placed it in her mouth and started chewing it.  

 

“No, it’s gum!”  Murdock winked.

 

The peppermint taste gave her some relief of her sickness.  She tried to walk, but lost the strength in her legs, they were numb and she stumbled.  Murdock and Face caught her. 

 

“Sorry” was all she could softly mutter before she fainted, luckily falling into Face and Murdock’s arms.

 

Murdock quickly put his finger in her mouth to remove the gum. 

 

“We don’t want to add choking to our list of worries.” He said to Face as he did so. 

 

Hannibal!”  BA called out excitedly, he had continued walking whilst Face and Murdock had dealt with Amy’s sickness and had come running back to the group.  “Look what I’ve found!  Man, you’re not gonna believe our luck!”

 

Face and Murdock gently placed Amy back on to the stretcher.  Amy was coming in and out of consciousness, moaning slightly as both he and Murdock carried her towards BA calls, following Hannibal. 

 

They came to a clearing; a gravel road that they were pretty certain led off to the main road.  In front of them was a large old barn, which looked untouched and overgrown with ivy and weeds.  Face and Murdock laid the stretcher down on the ground and Face lifted Amy into his arms. 

 

With all of his strength, with help from Murdock and Hannibal, BA opened the barn doors, which hadn’t moved for nearly twenty years.

 

The four of them stood in front of the barn, Face carrying Amy, who remained motionless in his arms, and looked at its contents.  All of them smiled gleefully.

 

“Wow, man, a 1950s Ford F100 pickup!”  BA was in heaven, the smile on his face showed it.

 

Stood in the barn was a large sky blue pickup truck.  It was covered in dust where it hadn’t moved for years. 

 

“Looks like its been here practically twenty years or more!”   Murdock put his finger along the hood to scrap off the dust.  Under that dust they could see there wasn’t an ounce of rust on the bodywork, only the chrome had small rust spots.  Its owner had probably looked after it very well in deed.  

 

All four men entered the barn, admiring the pickup truck.  It was a classic vehicle of its time.   

 

“It’s probably some old man’s, who’s died or something, and the family didn’t know what to do with it, so left it, and it’s been forgotten about.” BA studied the truck with glee, a smile beaming from ear to ear. “Hear about it all the time, man!” 

 

“Big guy!”  Murdock threw BA a set of keys, which he caught.  “They were hanging up over here!”  Murdock grinned at BA.

 

“So, Sergeant, how quick do you think you can get this baby to run?”

 

“I’ll be as fast as I can, Hannibal!”  BA threw a concerned glance over to Face who was now laying Amy on an old bench at the end of the barn. 

 

Face ran back to the stretcher to retrieve his leather jacket and placed it under Amy’s head, softly brushing her hair out of her face.  He’d laid her on her side, just in case she was likely to be sick again.  She was barely conscious, mumbling feverishly.  Face could hear in the background the guys starting to work on the pickup truck. 

 

“Face, I’m sorry.” She whispered painfully.

 

He knelt beside her and gently stroked one of her hands, trying to comfort her.  He looked at his watch; it had been nearly an hour now since she’d been given the injection, could she really last another hour? 

 

Her head ached so badly it hurt to open her eyes, so she kept them closed.  She could feel herself becoming hot and cold, feverish, her whole body shivered suddenly.   

 

“I’m cold,” she whispered again feverishly.  But Face could see sweat still beading around her hairline and on her neck.  “Face, I’m scared.”  She admitted, tightening her grip on his hand for comfort.

 

It’s okay, Amy, we’ve found a truck, we’re gonna get you to a hospital in no time.”  Face tried to reassure her and then he turned his attention to Murdock  Murdock!  Your Jacket!”

 

Murdock removed his jacket from the poles of their makeshift stretcher and came running over with an equally concerned expression to Face’s.  He gently placed his jacket over Amy.  Face moved out of his way but stood by him.

 

“Those slimeballs are going to pay for this,” Murdock half muttered angrily to himself.  Face was concerned by the tone of his friend’s words.  Murdock looked at her pretty face and picked up her hand.

 

“You know, wouldn’t it be good to just kiss her and she awake from this nightmare.”

 

If Amy had the energy, she would have chuckled at Murdock’s sweet gesture, instead she pretended she didn’t hear his kind words, feeling that sleep and lying still felt better to her.  She concentrated on inwardly dealing with her fever and pain.

 

“Murdock, I’m afraid that only happens in fairy tales,” Face said patting him on the back; he could see his friend was anxious.

 

Their attention was soon turned from Amy, as Hannibal had caught sight of his two men standing over her. 

 

“Murdock, Face, come on.  She’ll be all right.  BA needs a hand!  The quicker we bump start this baby, the quicker we’re out of here!”

 

---

 

 

Part 5

 

“I think it’s ready!”  BA slammed down the hood of the pickup truck.

 

“Twenty minutes, Big Guy!  That’s gotta be a record!”

 

“We gotta get it started yet!  That battery will be flat, we’re gonna have to push it.”

 

Whilst BA and Murdock had worked on the truck; Face had helped Hannibal with his bright idea of setting a couple of traps with what they could find in the barn, just in case the barn got paid a little visit by Felton and his men.  Hannibal hoped it might slow them down further.  Once they had finished setting their traps Face and Hannibal turned their attention to assisting BA.

 

Murdock had instinctively grabbed an empty gas can and a bit of hose and gone in a desperate search for some gasoline.  He’d decided to take a gamble and head along the gravel path to confirm that it did lead to the main road.  The gravel road was longer than he anticipated.  His plan was to flag the first car that came along that road if it killed him, praying it wouldn’t be one of Felton’s goons.  He’d been lucky and as he reached the top of the gravel road, puffing and panting, a car was coming along.  He flagged it down, practically standing in its way so it had to stop.  The elderly man and woman in the car, a little surprised to say the least, had been pleased to help. 

 

“You’re lucky son, not many cars travel along this road, this time of day.”  The old man said as he handed Murdock a full gas can, which he had in his trunk.  He believed Murdock’s ‘run out of gas in the middle of nowhere’ speech, and accepted the twenty-dollar bill Murdock insisted he take.  Murdock had sprinted back to the barn, through the woods as it was a shorter distance and hadn’t been gone more than fifteen minutes.

 

Now, the four men struggled to push the heavy vehicle out of the barn.  Face, BA and Hannibal pushed from the hood of the pickup truck.  It took a while to initially rock it off its spot.  BA growled has he squeezed every last ounce of energy inside of him to get the truck to move.  Murdock stood by the driver’s side, with the door open, with one hand on the steering wheel and pushing with the rest of his body on the doorframe.  As the truck began to move, he tried to steer the truck to the right direction they’d need to go, onto the gravel road.  All four of them pushed the heavy pickup truck with all their might.  Sweat starting to bead on their foreheads and making unconscious groans as they exhaled their breath, they pushed the truck with a matter of urgency; this was the only way they were going to get Amy to a hospital quickly.  It had to work.  

 

They eventually got the truck into position on the gravel road.  The all tried to catch their breath again and regain their strength.  

 

Murdock had the key already in the ignition of the pickup and remained by the driver’s side.  Face, BA and Hannibal went round to the back of the truck, ready to push for a final time hoping to get the vehicle started.  It was a gravel road; this wasn’t going to be as easy as a nice smooth paved road surface.  Again the four men used all their strength to get the pickup truck to roll.  Once confident it had enough speed, Murdock jumped into the drivers seat and simultaneously put his foot on the clutch, turned the ignition and placed the vehicle in gear and then slowly released the clutch pedal.  The pickup truck juddered and started to cough and splutter and with a big cloud of black smoke firing out of the exhaust it started.  Murdock gave it more gas to keep in running.  The engine had a clicking, hissing noise that a straight six made, that noise was like music to BA’s ears.  

 

“Well done BA!”  Hannibal patted him on the back.  The three men watched the pickup drive up the gravel road in front of them, each wiping the sweat off their brows. 

 

“Ah, it was nothing.”  BA responded modestly.  He’d worked his socks off to get that pickup going, Amy being at the forefront of his mind.  Luckily, the engine had just needed a bit of a clean up and lubrication.  He’d stripped the plugs and points and given everything he physically could a good dusting down and applied lubrication so that the engine would turn and not seize.

 

Murdock reversed the pick up truck back to the barn, still keeping the engine ticking over.  Face gently picked up Amy and laid her in the bed of the pickup truck and he sat with her, holding her up, her head in his arms.  Murdock jumped out of the drivers seat, allowing BA to take the wheel.  Murdock and Hannibal closed the barn doors behind them. 

 

Murdock then jumped in the back with Face and took one of Amy’s hands.  Face worried a little as he watched Murdock glance at her, muttering to himself.  He was definitely acting with a rage bubbling beneath his surface.  Face knew that this was not a good kind of crazy for Murdock to be experiencing.  BA and Hannibal sat in the front of the truck, BA at the wheel.  They drove up the gravel drive and came to the main road as they thought they would. 

 

“Which way Hannibal?”

 

“Take a left BA!”

 

“But isn’t the hospital probably to the right? And aren’t we going back the way we were coming in?”

 

“Yeah, and if I remember rightly we passed a large town on the way through, which had a hospital too.”

 

“But isn’t that further away?”

 

“Yes it is, but at least its not where our friends think we’ll be heading.  We just gotta move it, BA.”

 

BA pulled out onto the main road, turning left, black smoke puffing from the exhaust as the pickup gradually cleared its engine.  

 

“I’ll push this thing as fast it can go, Hannibal.  But we gotta remember it’s old, sixty’s gonna probably be it’s limit, the thing hasn’t even got 5000 miles on the clock,” BA replied as he looked down to the odometer, “It’ll probably need running in.  Hey, won’t we come across my van?”

 

 “Yeah but we won’t be able to use it, they shot the tyres out, Remember?  But we can make a stop!”  Hannibal grinned. 

 

“Yeah, I remember, those suckers are gonna pay for that!”

 

---

 

 

As they approached BA’s van, which was on the side of the road where they’d left it, Hannibal had decided that Face should drive the pickup, as he and Murdock hid with Amy in the back bed.  BA hid in the passenger seat of the cab.

 

Face drove along side BA’s van and jumped out of the pickup, leaving it still running.  He unlocked the back door to the van and was about to get the weapons out of the back until he heard a voice.

 

“Hold it right there!”  One of Felton’s goons ordered.  He’d been relieving himself behind a tree and had come running out of the woods zipping up his fly, so luckily for the team, hadn’t had a chance to look at the pickup in more detail and now had his rifle in Face’s back.  “Hands in the air and turn around real slow.” 

 

Face did as he was told and smiled at the creep, he recognised that it was the man Felton had called Simmons.  Simmons waved the rifle inches away from Face’s face.  In the mean time, Hannibal had got up from the back of the pickup and had a large stick he’d found, in preparation of this moment and stuck it in the man’s back.  He was taking a gamble, but what the heck he thought.

 

“Move slimeball and my friend will be wearing your guts!  Drop your weapon!” 

 

Luckily for the team, without truly thinking it through, Simmons released the gun with one hand and held it up in the air, no longer putting Face in danger. 

 

Face knew he didn’t have much time, before Simmons would realise Hannibal wasn’t holding a gun and took the opportunity of the element of surprise, grabbed the rifle off of the man and swiftly hit him in the face with the butt of it, knocking him out cold.  He smiled as he watched Simmons drop to the floor.

 

“Nice, Face, Nice!” Hannibal grinned.  “Murdock, give me a hand to tie this jerk up!”  Face threw Hannibal some rope that was handy in the back of the van. Murdock quickly jumped from the back of the pick up to assist Hannibal. 

 

Hannibal and Murdock secured Simmons in the trunk of the blue Sedan, with his hands tied behind his back.  Murdock then searched under their black van, he had watched carefully where Felton had thrown that syringe and he prayed it was still under there. 

 

Face removed their automatic rifles from the lockup in back of the van and placed them in the back of the pickup.

 

“Face, grab the gas can!”  BA shouted, looking down at the fuel gauge as he was back now sitting in the driver’s seat of the pickup, “I think we’re gonna need it!”

 

Face jumped into the van and quickly rummaged in amongst their bags, grabbing anything else he thought they might need including the radios.  He also found what he was looking for, a bottle of water.  ‘Amy may need this’ he thought.  On the way out of the back of the van, he grabbed the gas can as requested by BA.

 

“Lock it up, Face!”

 

“OK BA, OK!” With his hands full, Face threw it all in the back of the pickup and then locked up BA’s van.  It wasn’t worth the argument.

 

Hannibal, I got this, the hospital might need it to find an antidote.”  Murdock waved the syringe that Felton had injected Amy with.

 

“Good thinking, Murdock.”  Hannibal patted Murdock on the back and then turned to Face. “Lieutenant, how much time do we have?”

 

“It’s been just over an hour and a half now, Colonel, since she was injected.  We really need to get a move on.”  Face said as he looked at the timer on his watch.

 

Murdock placed the syringe safely in his jacket, making sure not to prick himself with the needle.  Face jumped back into the back of the pickup, handing a rifle to Hannibal as he did so, so that Hannibal would have something with him as a precaution.  Hannibal went back to sitting with BA in the cab.  Face and Murdock took up their positions in comforting Amy in the back of the pickup as BA hastily pulled away.  Amy still remained motionless and feverish with her eyes firmly closed, her condition seemingly worsening every time they looked at her.

 

“Face, she’s going to be alright isn’t she?”  There was still a worried concerned look in Murdock’s face. 

 

But he didn’t know but tried not to show his concern to Murdock and put a hand on his shoulder in reassurance.

 

 

Part 6

 

The light blue pickup truck pulled into the emergency bay at the hospital, screeching to a halt.

 

“You can’t park there!”

 

“Watch me sucker!” BA gave his fierce look to the orderly.  BA jumped out of the cab showing his full size to the orderly, who was then too afraid to argue. 

 

“We need help!”  Face shouted at the man as he and Murdock gently lifted Amy out of the back of the truck, now totally unconscious. 

 

The orderly grabbed a gurney from inside the hospital entrance and as he did so he shouted for assistance.  He wheeled the gurney as close as he could to Face and Murdock so that they could lay Amy on it. 

 

Doctors and nurses, to the team’s relief, came rushing out of the hospital to Amy’s aid, starting to check all of her vitals.  An oxygen mask was immediately put over her face.   All four men reluctantly moved out of the way from Amy’s side to allow the doctors and nurses to take over.

 

“She’s been poisoned, but we don’t know what with.”  Face said frantically to one of the doctors.

 

“Here, this is the syringe they used.”  Murdock gave it to another doctor who looked like he was in charge.  “You might be able to find the antidote.”

 

“Take this straight to the lab, tell them it’s urgent!”  The doctor ordered a nurse, handing her the syringe.  She rushed off into the hospital.  “Sir, can we have her name, please?”  The doctor turned back to Hannibal.

 

 “Miss Amy Allen.”  Hannibal confirmed.

 

“You’ll look after her!”  Murdock was still worried.  Face put an arm round him, patting his back. 

 

“We’ll do the best we can, sir.  She’s in good hands.”

 

Everything was moving so fast, the hospital staff wheeled her into the hospital and off out of site, all talking to one another about stats, blood pressure, it all sounded quite serious to the guys as they watched her be wheeled away.  Murdock and Face anxiously tried to follow but Hannibal called them back.

 

“Guy’s we gotta move it and find those slimeballs!” 

 

“But what if they work out we’ve brought her here, Hannibal?”  Murdock protested.

 

“Yeah, I don’t like the idea of leaving her here, unprotected.”  Face was in agreement with Murdock.  The pair of them showed their concern in their faces to Hannibal. 

 

“You’re right.  I’ve got a plan” and Hannibal walked into the hospital and up to the reception desk of the ER.  Face, Murdock and BA watched as he talked to the receptionist. 

 

“Man, I hope she’s OK.”  BA started to show his own concern.  He usually kept these feelings locked up inside of him until he could hold it in no longer.  “Those guys are gonna pay.”  He clicked his knuckles angrily.  Face and Murdock looked at BA and then one another, each with a wicked smile.  Felton and his men were going to pay. 

 

Hannibal returned back to the men, with a grin on his face.  He knew they weren’t going to like it.

 

“What?” Face looked worried, seeing the twinkle in his Colonel’s eye.

 

“What’d ya say Hannibal?”  Murdock was also intrigued by Hannibal’s grin.

 

“I told them to get in touch with the military,” the three of them started to protest to Hannibal’s words, but he continued, ”to contact Colonel Decker, and to tell him that the A Team just brought in Amy Allen.”  Hannibal chuckled as he reached for a cigar.  This was definitely a cigar moment, with the look on their faces.

 

“Ah man!” BA shook his head.

 

“Decker!” Face’s eyes widened, with an expression of dread.  “You’re crazy Hannibal!” 

 

“Crazier than Murdock, man!”

 

“Look guys, he’ll be here in a shot.  And besides, we’ll need someone to clean up our mess.”  Hannibal grinned.  He loved the idea of Decker being one step behind him, picking up the scum that Hannibal left behind him.  It kind of had this nice feeling of rubbing salt into a wound.  “Come on, we’ve got slimeballs to hunt.  The tables have turned and they don’t know it yet.”  Hannibal chuckled as he walked around to get back into the cab of the pickup truck.

 

“Yeah, if Decker doesn’t catch up with us first!”  Face complained as he jumped into the back of the pickup truck.

 

“You sure Amy’s gonna be alright, Faceman?”  Murdock asked as he too jumped into the back of the pickup with him, he looked back in the direction of the hospital entrance where he’d seen Amy been wheeled away on the gurney. 

 

“You heard what they said, Murdock, they’ll do the best they can.”  Face tried to reassure his friend, although deep down he too shared his concern.  But she was in the right place now.  

 

“Now, I think we’re gonna need a chopper!  Hannibal said as he got into the cab of the truck.

 

“I ain’t flyin.”

 

“You’re right BA, we need us two on the ground.  Face and Murdock will travel by chopper, you and I will stick to the road.”

 

BA smiled at Hannibal.  For the first time, BA was actually happy with this plan. 

 

 

‘’’

 

Part 7

 

“I need that chopper!  It’s an emergency!”  Face was in the process of scamming the pilot, who was just about to get into the pilot’s prized possession.  “My name is Pete Freeman, I work for a local news company, our chopper’s gone down and I’ve got to get over to a story that’s just broken out, otherwise CNN will get there before me.” 

 

“I don’t care!” The pilot responded angrily.

 

Murdock was already clambering into the cockpit of the helicopter in question, even though the pilot was disagreeing with Face.  He’d tucked a bag in behind him, which contained their ammunition and automatic rifles.

 

“I’m sorry, sir, but this isn’t really my chopper.”  The pilot continued his argument.  “It’s owned privately and my boss is not going to be happy, if I don’t turn up to collect him.  Hell, I could lose my job!”

 

“And I could lose my job, if I don’t borrow this chopper!”  Face still tried to convince the man.

 

Murdock had started to fire up the bird.  Its rotors started to whirl around above Face, making it very windy and very loud.  The pilot did not look pleased at Face; his chopper was being stolen right from under him. 

 

“Look, who’s your boss?”  Face shouted over the noise of the chopper and also trying on his old Faceman charm.

 

“His name is Felton, Mr Charlie Felton, and he’ll kill me!  I’m suppose to be going out to get him now!” The pilot still protested.

 

Face grinned when he heard that name.  

 

“Give him this card,” Face luckily had a card with the appropriate details on it for this particular scam.  “And tell him we’ll be mentioning his kind donation of this chopper in our news report.  Trust me,” Face lied.  “We’ll have it back to you in no time.  He’ll understand.”  Face wasn’t going to take no for an answer, had no guilt now, scamming the chopper from this pilot.  This guy was probably on his way out to give Felton air support in his hunt for the team. 

 

Face clambered into the chopper and as he sat himself in his seat next to Murdock, the helicopter lifted into the sky.  Face put his headset on so that he could communicate to Murdock, whilst Murdock waved at the disgruntled and angry pilot, who was standing on the airfield watching his helicopter be stolen from him.

 

“You are never going to believe who this helicopter belongs to,” Face grinned at Murdock. 

 

“Not Felton?”

 

“You got it in one, Murdock!”

 

“Means they’ll be expecting to see it in the air too.” Murdock smiled smugly back.  “Boy, will they be surprised!”

 

“Hey, but Murdock, lets keep it in one piece while we’re in it, huh?” Face looked a little worried at the twinkle in Murdock’s eye. 

 

“Hey Faceman, this is a perfectly good chopper, there is no reason why it shouldn’t stay in one piece,” Murdock winked.  “Unless we get shot at, of course!”  Murdock grinned at Face who now had a worried expression on his face.  “Let’s go catch us some bad guys!  I’ve got one or two bones to pick with Felton.”

 

Face looked even more concerned at Murdock’s last words.

 

Faceman, maybe you wanna let Hannibal know we’re on our way.”

 

 

***

 

 

“Yeah, we’re gonna pick up Simmons on the way.  I want all those slimeballs together for when we put the lid on this.”

 

Hannibal and BA drove along the same road that they’d driven earlier that morning, in the blue pickup truck. 

 

“I’m starting to get the feeling of deja vu!”  Hannibal grinned, coolly puffing on his cigar. 

 

When they came across their van and the other vehicles, they pulled over and hauled Simmons out of the trunk of the blue sedan.  By the look of him, still tied up but hot and sweaty, he’d been banging on the inside of the trunk hoping to get heard, to no avail.

 

“You’re coming with us sucker!”  BA grabbed the man and threw him roughly into the back of the pickup truck.  Hannibal grinned; he could see fear in the man’s eyes as he sat in the back of the pickup truck with him, with his rifle trained on him. 

 

“We’re gonna have a little hunting party of our own, slimeball.” 

 

BA jumped back into the cab of the pickup truck and carried on in the direction they were heading. 

 

“Face, come in, have you got a location?  We’ve just picked up Simmons.” Hannibal talked into his radio, still with his rifle pointing at Simmons.

 

“Yeah, Colonel, they’re just where we want them.  At the barn.”  Face replied.

 

“Nice.”

 

“We can see you coming along the road, we’ll wait for your arrival until we land this thing.”

 

Hannibal tapped on the window to the cab and shouted as loud as he could so BA could hear him.  “They’re at the barn!  Face and Murdock are gonna follow us by air.” 

 

BA nodded to confirm he understood. 

 

Murdock and Face followed the blue pickup truck by air, but Murdock brought the chopper in low, so it went along the wide main road to be hidden by the tall trees of the wood.  The road was quiet and didn’t give too many problems to the chopper with on coming vehicles. 

 

Eventually the pickup truck and helicopter came to the opening of the gravel road on their right.  Murdock had worked out that this would be wide enough for them to land the chopper in safely.  BA pulled the pickup truck in first.  Luckily, the gravel road was long enough that Felton and his men wouldn’t realise they had arrived. 

 

When the truck came to stop, Hannibal gagged Simmons, so that he couldn’t make a noise and made sure his bindings were secure, so that he could not escape the pickup truck. 

 

Hannibal grinned at Simmons, “I don’t want you taking a walk, slimeball!“  Hannibal then jumped out of the back of the pickup truck.

 

At the same time, BA jumped out of the drivers seat, automatic rifle in hand and Hannibal signalled for BA to take cover in the woods.  Hannibal’s plan was that they were going to go in from roughly four angles and surround these guys. 

 

Murdock quickly landed the chopper; he took the keys from it, as he didn’t want anyone stealing his already stolen helicopter.  ‘It could be a useful means of escape for either party’, he thought to himself. 

 

With the blades of the chopper whirling above them, starting to slow, Face and Murdock both jumped out and did as Hannibal silently instructed.  All four of them took cover behind the trees, their automatic rifles to hand and they sneaked up on foot towards the barn.  The A Team were going to do their own bit of hunting.

 

 

“Damn it, where’d that chopper go?”  Felton had been anxiously searching the skies again, in search of his chopper; he’d briefly spotted it.   He was getting frustrated that he hadn’t caught up with the team yet; he should have nailed them by now.  Coming across this barn had meant they were totally off course for the hospital, he smiled at that thought, ‘they’ll be begging for that antidote by now’. 

 

Felton could still hear the chopper, so it was close by.  He hoped that Simmons had been able to make contact with it, ‘maybe the chopper was picking him up first’, Felton thought to himself.   

 

As Felton searched the sky, his four men approached the barn.  Two of the men opened the barn doors as the two other men walked in, their rifles ready in their hands for anything unexpected. 

 

“Sir, I think they were in side the barn at some point.”  One of the men called out, just about to enter the barn, looking at the evidence in the barn.  “And it looks like there may have been a vehicle or something in here.”

 

Felton’s smug smile fell from his face at that point and watched as the man who’d called out entered the barn.  As the man entered, he tripped on a wire he hadn’t seen and a large heavy barrel headed towards him knocking him off his feet.  He cried in pain as it had hit him right in the gut, winding him. 

 

“Perry!”  Felton shook his head as he watched one of his men fall to the ground. “Be more careful you fool!”

 

The other man, who’d also entered the barn had turned to watch Perry be knocked off his feet by the large barrel, but continued to walk backwards, also tripping another wire.  Before he knew what had hit him, a large oil can, full of dirty black oil came rushing towards him with such force he didn’t have time to get out of the way and was hit square in the face, pouring oil all over him. 

 

“Those bastards!”  The man cursed. 

 

“You alright, Jack?”  Perry asked still winded from his own incident.

 

The two other men that had opened the barn doors chuckled loudly at Jack and Perry’s misfortunes.

 

“You think it’s funny do you?”  A voice shouted from the woods.  “Drop your weapons and put your hands up!  You’re surrounded.” Hannibal ordered sternly.

 

All five men looked around them, unable to see anyone.  Hannibal let off a round of gunfire by their feet. 

 

“Next time, it’ll be you!  I said drop your weapons!” 

 

The four men did as they were told, but Felton refused.  Murdock decided to send a warning shot of a line of bullets in front of Felton’s feet.  Felton also dropped his weapon and put his hands up. 

 

“All of you, come out, in front of the barn!” 

 

The five men, including the two men dazed in the barn, did as they were told and walked out in front of the barn a good ten feet with their hands in the air.  All four members of the A Team walked out from the cover of the woods in different directions, with their automatic rifles pointing at Felton and his men, covering every angle.  Felton and his men were surrounded. 

 

“Face, tie these bozos up!” Hannibal ordered. 

 

Face slung his rifle over his shoulder and grabbed a rope from inside the barn.  Knowing that both traps had been set off, he was able to walk in confidently, not having to search for the wires he’d set earlier.  He grabbed some rope that was hung up on a rusty old hook on the inside of the barn and then approach the five men. 

 

“Where’s your pretty little lady?”  Felton asked arrogantly.  “You sure you don’t need this.”  Felton pointed to the antidote that was still inside his jacket. 

 

All four members of the team were suddenly angered by the arrogance of his comments, reminding them that Amy was seriously ill in hospital but it angered Murdock the most, who was closest to Felton.  Murdock lost his concentration momentarily.  He dropped his rifle slightly so it was no longer a threat and stepped towards Felton, mumbling threats.  Felton seeing Murdock off guard took a gamble and this opportunity to make a run for it, pushing Murdock out of the way as he did so.  Murdock quickly came back to his senses, realising his mistake and could have quite easily shot him, but he wasn’t a murderer.  Instead he was going to take great pleasure in beating the crap out of him and so ran after him. 

 

With the distraction, the other four men took their opportunity.  Face got punched first and fell to the ground.  Hannibal and BA ran after the four escaping men.  Face gathered his senses and was back on his feet, chasing one of the men down.  When he was at a confident distance he launched himself at the man and landed on his back, pushing him to the ground.  He angrily turned the man over and punched him hard, until he was out cold. 

 

“That’s for the one to my eye!”

 

Murdock caught up with Felton as he was the faster runner and was determined not to let this creep escape.  He too cut off Felton by anticipating his route and launched himself at the man, knocking Felton off his feet. 

 

“This is for Amy!”  Murdock punched Felton hard in the face, but Felton, maybe not as tall as Murdock was stockier and therefore strong, got to his feet and rushed at Murdock.  Throwing punches at each other, Murdock got one in the gut.  He was briefly winded but the anger inside of him, fed his adrenalin that kept him going. 

 

“How is that pretty little lady?”  Felton jibed as he took a swing at Murdock. 

 

“Why you ugly mudsucker!” Murdock bit at Felton’s taunt and angrily punched back. 

 

BA easily knocked out his first man with one punch, and chased down the second.  This man was taller than BA and quite stocky, BA was going to have his work cut out.  BA also remembered this man was the one who’d shot out his tyres on his van, because he was still dressed in a cops uniform.  He was going to keep his promise; this man was going to pay!

 

Hannibal stood throwing punches at his man, Perry, the two of them at equal odds, until Face turned up, smiling, with a large piece of wood he’d grabbed from the barn and wacked the man hard around the back, knocking him off his feet.  Hannibal smiled at Face with gratitude and pounced on the man, quickly turning him over and knocked him out cold with one punch.  Hannibal then dragged Perry back to where he’d wanted them originally.  Face and BA dragged their men making a pile of four men, all moaning and groaning in pain as they came to.  BA began to tie them up as Face spied Murdock still grappling with Felton.  Face shot a concerned glance at Hannibal who gave an anxious look back to him, as if to say deal with it Lieutenant.  Face ran over to Murdock with urgency in his pace. 

 

Murdock had Felton lying on the ground; he was kneeling over him, punching him in the face and shouting at the man.

 

“If she’s not pulled through this!”  With every sentence Murdock punched him in the face.  “I’ll swear I’ll come back and poison you myself!” Punch.

 

“If she’s suffered any pain!” Face grabbed Murdock’s hand, as he was about to give another blow to Felton’s already bloody face. 

 

Felton gasped through a broken bloody nose, pleading to Face, “Get this guy off me, he’s nuts!” 

 

“Murdock, Murdock!”  Face had to shout to get through to him, pulling him off Felton.  “You’ve beaten him.  Leave it.  Come on.  I think he’s got the message.”  And he pulled him off of Felton and patted him on the back.  “Amy’s going to be OK.  I’m sure of it.”

 

Face walked Murdock away from Felton. 

 

“I hope so Faceman, I hope so!” the anger in Murdock’s eyes still showing.

 

Face turned towards Felton with an equal threatening look.  “He’ll pay Murdock, if she isn’t, I promise you that much.” 

 

Felton lay motionless on the ground, groaning in pain.  Hannibal came along and roughly pulled him to his feet and walked him to his other men; all of them were already tied. 

 

BA had gone back to the pickup truck up the gravel road and fetched Simmons out of the back of the pickup.  BA grabbed him by his collar.  “You’re coming with me sucker!” 

 

Simmons walked wearily to the barn.  BA was behind him, pointing a rifle in his back and shoving him occasionally to make him walk slightly faster.  Once they got back to the barn, BA slung him too with the other men. 

 

All of the men were tied together, just inside the barn.  BA, Face and Murdock had their weapons trained on the men.  They were not going to move this time.  Hannibal had been able to write a brief note, painted with some oil and a large piece of cardboard from an old box in the barn:

 

“These men poisoned Miss Allen, are known murderers in these parts, hunting men for sport.  Send them to jail.”

 

Hannibal chuckled as he placed the note in front of Felton and his men.  He took out a cigar from his pocket; Face was quick to supply a light for it, also grinning quite smugly at Felton and his men.  

 

“Felton, I hope you’ve learnt from this.  Never pick a fight with the A Team.  We’re harder targets than you think!”  Hannibal grinned victoriously and turned to his three team mates, “I love it when a plan comes together!” 

 

As all four men walked away from the barn, back towards the pickup truck and chopper, they could hear sirens in the distance. 

 

“Decker?” Face worried. 

 

“Nice.  Look at that for timing!”

 

Er, Hannibal, how we going to get out of here?”

 

“The chopper of course!”

 

“I ain’t flying!”

 

“Of course not BA, you get the pickup!”  As Hannibal said his words, Face passed Hannibal the large piece of wood that he had used earlier on one of the men and Hannibal hit BA over the back of the head, knocking him out cold. 

 

Hannibal, couldn’t you have done that a bit closer to the chopper?”  Face groaned as he and Murdock caught BA, before he hit the ground.

 

 

….

 

 

Part 8

 

“All I was trying to say was, they’re not looking for me!”

 

“Murdock, be quiet will ya!”  Face went to put his hand over Murdock’s mouth to shut him up but didn’t have to, Murdock gestured with his own, zipping up his mouth.  “That was close!  MPs are crawling all over this place, thanks to Hannibal!” 

 

Face and Murdock were in a cleaning closet.  ‘It certainly smelt like one,’ thought Face.  There were various cleaning instruments; mops, buckets and brooms within it and on the shelves were various large plastic bottles containing bleaches and disinfectants.  It had been the first door Face had tried which looked safe to enter, to escape two MPs walking down the corridor.  Face wanted to get out this closet as quickly as possible; he was concerned that the smell would linger on him, giving a whole new meaning to “Eau de Toilet”.

 

Face held a large bouquet of various pink flowers, which he was trying desperately not to crush.  He passed them to Murdock and then peered through the very slight gap he’d made by holding the door ajar.  He watched the two MPs they had hidden from.  They were still standing in the corridor chatting to a nurse.  Eventually, to Face’s delight, they moved on, away from the closet.

 

“Is it clear yet?” Murdock whispered after unzipping his mouth.

 

“Yes, yes, they’ve moved on now.”   

 

Face took the flowers back from Murdock and then they both reappeared from the closet into the main corridor of the hospital.  A nurse gave them an odd look as she past them. 

 

“I told you that wasn’t radiology!”  Face said sarcastically to Murdock and then smiled at the nurse.

 

Face then decided to use his charm further to find out exactly where Amy was situated within the small hospital; he went to the reception desk just along the corridor. 

 

“Excuse me, which room is Miss Amy Allen in?”  He flashed his believable smile unable to hide the impressive bunch of pink flowers he was holding.

 

“Aren’t they pretty?” The nurse said and then looked at the board behind her.  She then looked back to the direction of the handsome man in front of her.  “Oh, she’s just along the corridor, we’ve put her in room 121.”  The nurse pointed in the direction they should take and then back to Murdock and Face.

 

Face smiled again nervously checking there were no MPs around, “Thank you.”  Face winked at the nurse.

 

The nurse was just about to call out to them something about visitors, but Face and Murdock had already left the reception desk and were walking along the corridor.  They hurried as inconspicuously as possible to the room they’d been directed to.  To their relief there hadn’t been any MPs parading the corridors. They looked through the small diamond shaped window in the door, to check the room was Amy’s.  They were a little shaken at the sight they saw.

 

Amy lay in a hospital gown in the bed, with her eyes closed and a mask over her pale face.  Both arms were by her side, out of the covers.  There was a drip connected to her left arm feeding her fluids and a monitor beeped next to her, monitoring her heart rate.  There was also a catheter bag hung below her bed.  Murdock and Face both shared a similar expression of concern on their faces.  How sick was she?

 

They both checked there were no MPs lurking around and then quickly entered the room.

 

“I don’t think I hit that slimeball hard enough!” Murdock said under his breath angrily and looked down at his bruised knuckles. 

 

Face tapped him reassuringly on his shoulder, he too felt like he wanted to go back and hit Felton.

 

A pretty young nurse entered Amy’s room to make her routine check and saw the two men standing just inside her door.  “Don’t panic, she’s fine.  She’s just sleeping at the moment.”  The nurse reassured the two worried faces in front of her. “ ButEr, I’m sorry, only close family are really allowed to be in here.  Are you family?” 

 

“Yes, we’re her older brothers.”  Face chipped in quickly, flashing his smile again.  

 

“Oh, how sweet, two older brothers.  I always wanted an older brother to protect me.” The nurse looked at Murdock and Face and was impressed with what she saw.  “So, which one of you is the eldest then?” She flirted slightly.

 

“He is!”  They both said in unison and pointed at one another. 

 

The nurse giggled, shaking her head slightly.  Face gave Murdock a disapproving stare, but Murdock just grinned back at him. 

 

Face and Murdock still looked worried at the state of Amy in the bed.  Murdock went to stand by her left side and took her hand into his and Face placed the flowers on the end of Amy’s bed and stood on the opposite side, taking the other hand gently into both of his.  The nurse seeing both their worried expressions tried to reassure them again.

 

“Don’t worry, she’s just sleeping.  We’re just getting some fluids into her.” The nurse pointed to the saline that hung beside Amy and was connected to her via her left hand.  The nurse then started to take her temperature and blood pressure and record them on the board at the end of the bed, but continued to talk.  “The oxygen is to just aid recovery.  She’s exhausted.  Her body has gone through quite an ordeal; but she’s a heck of a fighter.  She’s just very weary, that’s all.”

 

“That’s our Amy!  A true soldier!”  Murdock replied to the nurse.  “Did you know what the poison was?”

 

“Ah, yes, the gentlemen that brought her in provided a syringe.”  The nurse said unaware that Face and Murdock were the same men; they decided to keep it that way.  “That was very useful.  It contained poison from a snake, oh I can’t remember now what snake the lab said, and I have enough to think about.”  The nurse smiled at the two men.  “But apparently one bite from that snake would, well, yes cause harm, but over a longer period of time, you usually can have anything up to 4 to 20 hours to act on a snake bite, therefore giving you more time to get an antidote and it be less dangerous.”

 

“So how much did Amy have?” Murdock asked with concern. 

 

“Our patient, here, had a dose equivalent to about 3-4 snake bites, we think, which proved slightly more dangerous, hence her symptoms exhibited that more quickly.  It also didn’t help that it was administered in her shoulder.  A snake usually bites the leg or arm, and therefore you have more chance of containing or slowing down the poison.  The guys that brought her here, got her here in the nick of time.  Her body was just starting to shut down.”  The nurse shook her head in disgust, “Who would do such a thing? Huh?” 

 

“Don’t worry, those creeps are going to jail for a very long time!” Face confirmed with his smile, trying now to reassure the nurse.

 

“Look, let me take those from you and find a vase,” the nurse took the bouquet of flowers from the bed where Face had placed them, “and I’ll leave you two, to sit with your sister.”  She winked and left the room.

 

Face and Murdock looked at Amy silently for a moment, both in their own thoughts.

 

“Gees, those bastards, Face!” Murdock briefly got angry but then simmered down. “She could have died!”

 

“I know, I know, lets not dwell on it too much, huh?”

 

Murdock pondered again for a while.

 

“Now, this could be where a kiss would wake her,” Murdock leant forward, removed the oxygen mask from her face and placed his lips softly on hers.  Face was a little taken back by Murdock’s sudden gesture.

 

“Murdock!” Face whispered nervously. “You know, if I tried anything like that, Hannibal would have me…” Face quickly remembered where he was and whose bed he was standing beside.  “Well, you know what he’d do to me!”

 

Murdock grinned at Face and then they both watched Amy, as gradually she opened her eyes.    

 

Amy could hear voices, recognisable voices.  As she breathed there was cool air entering her lungs, fresh, clean, pure air, making it easy for her to breathe, it felt effortless.  Her eyes remained closed.  Her body ached.  She was tired and had no energy to move.  She felt something be removed from her face, that cool fresh comforting air removed, and gentle pressure to her lips.  Again those voices, she gradually opened her eyes to look at a slightly nervous but smiling handsome face before her.

 

“Face.” She gently whispered and smiled, so pleased to see him.  She felt her left hand squeeze; she turned in the direction.  Another friendly face, grinning at her,  Murdock.”  Her eyes felt heavy, she blinked to try and keep them open and wake herself up. 

 

“See, what did I tell ya, Faceman?” Murdock was pleased with himself. 

 

“Hey you, you gave us quite a scare,” Face spoke gently, stroking her hand that he held.   

 

Where’s BA and Hannibal?”  Amy whispered, she wasn’t surprised to not see them there, as she knew BA had his own way of showing he cared for her, and Hannibal didn’t usually give much away in ways of showing affection but then she worried, maybe something did go wrong.  “They’re OK aren’t they?”  She looked at both Face and Murdock worriedly. 

 

“They’re fine, they just couldn’t come.”  Face reassured her. “They gotta sort out the van and er… well it’s a bit dangerous for us all to be together right now.” 

 

Amy’s face turned back to a worried expression on Face’s last comment. 

 

Its Ok, kid, Hannibal just had the bright idea of getting the hospital to call Decker, to protect you here.”  Face added sarcastically, equally agitated by Hannibal’s crazy plan.

 

“Decker!”  Amy tried to sit up.

 

“Hey, hey, don’t worry you can pretend to be asleep or something, sweetheart,” Murdock placed a hand on her shoulder and winked.

 

“What if he catches me when I am not, though?  Huh?  What do I tell him, Face?” She turned to Face. 

 

“The truth!”  Face smiled.  “Tell him the truth, you were kidnapped by Felton and his men, who, for some crazy idea, thought you were part of the A Team.  They poisoned you and all you know is the three of us, you presume to be the A Team, brought you to the hospital.” He winked. 

 

Murdock looked glumly at the words “the three of us” and fidgeted slightly disapprovingly.

 

“Murdock!  You know she can’t mention you?”

 

“Yeah, hun.  It’s for your own safety too.” Amy squeezed Murdock’s hand that was still holding hers. 

 

Amy grumbled, “Decker’s been constantly hounding me at work.  This is all I need.” 

 

“You’ll think of something, kid.”

 

“Did you get them?”  Amy asked, she raised her hand to Face’s eye, which was showing some slight bruising; she’d also noticed that both Murdock and Face’s hands, especially Murdock’s were bruised. 

 

“Yeah, we got them.  Don’t you worry about that, ” Face smiled back at her.  “Anyway, Amy, we better get out of here, before you know who turns up.  We just wanted to check that you were okay.”

 

Without hesitation, Murdock leaned forward and kissed Amy on her forehead.  Which reminded her of something.

 

“Did one of you…?”  Amy hesitated. “Oh, never mind.”  She probably imagined it.

 

“We’ll hook up back in LA, chica,” and Murdock winked at her.

 

Face hesitated initially but like Murdock he too kissed her on her forehead and gently stroked her hair.  He was pleased she was safe.  He still held her hand and squeezed it. 

 

“I think it’s gonna be too dangerous for us to come back to get you, so yeah, we’ll catch up in a few days.”  Face smiled at her.  “You get some rest now.”

 

Both men left Amy’s bedside and walked towards the door.  As they walked out of the room, Murdock turned and waved in his usual way, eyes wide and grinning, which made Amy chuckle.  Face grabbed him by the collar of his jacket, the door closed behind them and they hurried out of the hospital unnoticed. 

 

Amy was about to close her eyes but the nurse returned with her large bouquet of flowers. 

 

“Aren’t they beautiful?  These are what your brothers brought in to cheer you up.  Aren’t you lucky to have such wonderful brothers?”

 

“Brothers?” Amy initially confused by the nurses comments soon realised who she was talking about, “Oh yeah, my brothers!”

 

The array of pink flowers were beautiful and in abundance.  Amy smiled; Face must have chosen them, with a little help from Murdock.

 

“Nurse, I think I’m going to get some rest.” 

 

The nurse came over and put the mask back over Amy’s face. 

 

“I don’t blame you, and this will help relax you.”

 

Amy closed her eyes, breathing the cool pure air again and the nurse checked her over, taking her blood pressure and her temperature before leaving her to sleep.

 

“Any sign of the A Team, Captain Crane?”

 

Amy could hear the distinct, gruff voice of Decker as he was walked along the corridor outside her room.  She kept her eyes closed.

 

“No Sir.”

 

“OK, keep me updated.  I’m sure they’ll want to check on Miss Allen.”

 

Amy heard him enter the room but still kept her eyes shut.  ‘Please go away’ she thought.  Another nurse had entered the room with Decker.

 

“She’s sleeping at the moment, sir, but she’s OK.  The guys that brought her in, got her here just in time.”

 

“It’s OK, nurse.  I’ll wait.”  Amy could hear a seat being dragged to the side of her bed.  If she could have rolled her eyes she would have done, ‘doesn’t he ever give up?’

 

Amy heard another voice; someone else must have entered the room.

 

“Sir, a black van matching the description of the A Team’s, just been spotted, sir!”

 

“OK, get the unit ready to move out.  I’ll pay Miss Allen a visit later.”

 

Amy thought to herself, ‘well I could at least give the guys a half hour head start’ and started to wake.

 

“Hold it Lieutenant, I think she’s waking.  I want to hear what Miss Allen’s got to say.”

 

Amy removed the mask from her face.  “Colonel Decker?” Amy asked sleepily and innocently.

 

“Miss Allen, how are you feeling? I’ve been informed the A Team may have saved your life.”

 

“The A Team?”

 

 

[END]

 


Hard Targets by Billy

 

 


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