Between Waking and Sleeping
Summary: Someone is very interested in the reward for the A-Team. . . and will do anything to get it.
Warnings: Drugs. Some violence.
Half past eleven. In the center of town a man with red, short hair and a long black coat was making a phone call in the call box. The lamp-post vaguely lighted the surrounding. The entire street was quiet. The wind played his game of blowing leaves over the asphalt.
"How big is the reward, Mike?" A voice sounded at the other side of the line.
"I will tell you when we get together."
"And when is that?"
"Same as always?"
"Yes. I already figured out how to pull the job."
"Good. See you there."
*Click.* The man hung up the phone and smiled. He got out of the call box and looked around nervously. Then he quickly walked into an alley. . . into the darkness . .
"Shut up, fool!" BA shouted.
"What did he do this time, BA?" Hannibal sighed as he got in the van. He had just made a phone call. Everything was ok with the whales. Nobody was going to have a whale-steak for dinner. The mission had been succesful. He gave a thumbs-up sign to Face.
"BA is upset because Murdock asked him to give Billy a belly-rub. And Murdock is upset because BA refused." Face replied for the two fighting men.
"What's wrong with a belly-rub? Every dog needs that once in a while!"
Murdock replied indignant while ducking for cover in the back of the van.
"Hannibal! Make him stop!" BA growled.
"Don't worry, BA. We have to get Murdock back to the VA anyway."
"Do I have to go? It's boring over there!" Murdock whined.
"Sorry, Captain. We have to make you appear miraculously again." Hannibal smiled.
"Here. You can borrow my lockpicks. You should be able to get in with this."
Face handed Murdock the little box.
"Thanks. This should help me get inside. I think they already locked the doors by now."
After a half an hour drive BA stopped the van a few blocks away from the VA.
"You'll have to walk the rest, Captain. We can't risk being spotted." Hannibal said.
"Bye crazy fool."
"I'll call you in a few days, Murdock."
"Good night, Captain."
The van drove off. *Off to a beautiful sunset...* Murdock thought. *Well, a sunset anyway.*
The clouds were pulling together.
"Better hurry." He said to himself.
At first he didn't succeed, but then he managed to lockpick the door. He sneeked through the hallway to his room. He looked around if nobody saw him and then pulled a tiny little string that was coming from under the door. A key was attached to it.
*Great idea, Face. Best one ever.* Murdock smiled. He went into his room.
The van stopped at a little apartment Face 'hired'.
BA sat down in the couch, tired of the long drive.
"Too bad Murdock can't always be with us." Face sighed.
"We can't risk his freedom." Hannibal replied.
"Yeah. And besides, the crazy fool belongs in the VA." Ba said while zapping with the remote control.
"BA, get your feet of the table will ya. This apartment needs to be in perfect shape when we move out again. Hannibal! look out for the vase!" Face jumped towards the vase and cought it a few inches above the floor.
"Woops! Sorry Face." Hannibal said while looking at his Lieutanant balancing uneasy with the vase in his hands.
"It's okay Hannibal. Just don't tear down the entire place, will ya?"
Murdock stood on the edge of a building.
It was so tall he was looking at the clouds from above.
He knew this dream.
It had been a while since he had this dream, but he still knew it, like he knew life.
This dream WAS life. You can't get through life without taking some risks, some chances.
He turned around and slowly walked away from the edge.
Suddenly he stopped and turned around again.
He took a short look at the sky above him.
He looked in front of him again and started running.
When he reached the edge. . he jumped.
He felt nothing beneath his feet.
Yet he didn't fall.
He was flying. . He knew this feeling.
A feeling of life. HIS life . .
He knew it from both this farmiliar dream as he knew it from flying in an aeroplane or helicopter.
Flying. That was HIS life.
A song came up in his mind.
He sang along with it with a loud voice.
"I wanna fly like an eagle to the sea. I wanna fly like an eagle let my spirit carry me."
Suddenly he saw the ground beneath him again.
It was closing in on him.
He was falling!
He felt pain as he was approaching the soil.
This was not his dream!
With a shock he woke up. He felt really sick and had a major headache. He stumbled to the bathroom. He also felt dizzy. It took him great effort to reach the bathroom. He waved his arms around him to find things he could grab hold on. He felt strange. He was looking at everything from a distance. The world was both close as far away. He tried to focus, but he didn't succeed. Like he was trying to grab a cloud. Finally he reached the bathroom. Just in time. He threw up.
"I feel very sick." Murdock moaned while a nurse examined him the next morning.
"Shouldn't have gone jaunting." She grinned. But then she turned serious again.
"Any other strange feelings what so ever? Anything that could give me a clue? It might be just a cold, but it could also be worse."
"I threw up last night. And I had a headache."
"Well, I think some aspirin will do you good." the nurse concluded while she went to get some. "Here." She handed him a small box with some aspirin. "If it isn't over in a few days, come back and I will give you something stronger."
"Thanks." Murdock mumbled. Then he stumbled back to his room.
"They are a strong team. That's what makes them so vulnerable. We have to get to one of them. If we take him down, we take the team down."
"I just called Murdock. Everything's okay. He just sounded a bit tired." Face told the others.
"He'll be fine. We did got him back in the middle of the night. Did you also tell him about that little store I purchased?" Hannibal asked.
"Yeah. But he didn't really respond. He seemed a little. . absent-minded."
"The fool is always absent-minded!! BA responded.
Face only smiled vaguely.
"Did he at least understand that we're going to live near the centre of town?" Hannibal informed.
"Yeah. He told me he wrote it down."
"Okay then. I am going to get my stuff together." Hannibal suited the action to the word and went to his room. Face still wasn't comforted.
"Maybe he's sick." He tried to comfort himself. He probably thought saying it out loud would help.
"Don't worry, Face. We're only 20 minutes away from the sucker." BA smiled. "I'll go visit him tomorrow."
"Aw, Come on, Face. He's a big man. He can take care of himself. Besides, we got him back at the VA yesterday. Kinda silly to go and visit him now already." BA said.
"Maybe you're right."
"Ofcourse I'm right! And if he's sick, they've got doctors and nurses there too, don't they?"
"Yeah." That comforted Face. Murdock would be just fine.
When they arrived at the small shop they decided to take a look inside first. Hannibal pulled out the keys while walking towards the front door of the shop. There was a very big staircase built in a half circle around the front door so it could be reached from any angle. A small covering was built above the door that could give shelter to someone waiting in front of it. With big red and blue letters a large plate above the covering indicated: S U P E R M A R K E T
"Looks pretty nice huh?" Hannibal smiled. "We have a legal job now."
"Hannibal, where did you get the money to buy this?" Face informed.
"A Swiss account with account number 90479-347895." Hannibal smiled.
BA started to laugh. But Face couldn't laugh that much. He faced Hannibal with a deadly look.
"You're not the only one with special abilities." Hannibal smiled. " It only took the president of the United States." Hannibal quickly opened the door and ran inside. The bell that was attached to the door ringed a lot at first, but then it fell down.
"This will be my room." Face stepped into a huge room and put down his suitcase.
"And why is that then?" Hannibal asked.
"It was my money," Face gave Hannibal an angry look again. "so I will stay in the largest room."
"Very well, Lieutanant."
They unpacked their stuff and Hannibal started to make phonecalls to get the Supermarket filled with products. Face started to clean up the store. And BA found out one of the fridges didn't work, so he immediately started working on it.
Murdock got himself a glass of water and an aspirine before he went to bed. He let the glass of water on his nightstand. *Just in case I need another aspirine tonight.*
He stood on the edge of a building.
It was so tall he was looking at the clouds from above.
He knew this dream.
He knew it like life.
*My dream. I don't want to dream this dream. Not now. What if it will go wrong again?*
Suddenly he was looking at his dream from a distance.
He saw himself standing on the building.
He saw himself.
Running towards the edge.
Falling . . .
All of a sudden he woke up again.
He prepared himself to get up and walk to the bathroom again, but he didn't feel sick this time.
*Guess the aspirin worked. I'll get myself another one. Maybe I'm coming down with a cold.*
He sat up on his bed and tried to get up to walk to the nightstand, but as he got up straight he lost his balance. He fell on his knees. He looked at the room spinning before his eyes. He was feeling extremely dizzy. And he had a strange feeling in his head. He felt a distance between him and the world again, but the feeling was stronger than last time. He finally succeeded to crawl back in bed.
Outside, covered by darkness, someone ran away in silence.
"The nurse told me you were here yesterday morning. Still feeling sick?"
The doctor said as Murdock came walking into his office. Murdock just nodded yes.
"What's the matter? Did you throw up again?"
"No. I woke up last night after having about the same dream as the night before.
And I felt dizzy again."
"Dreams eh? I think I am going to call doctor Richter for an appointment. I think this might be psychosomatic."
"What?" Murdock blinked.
"Psychosomatic. When something is troubling the mind, it can affect the body. Psycho-somatic."
Murdock nodded he understood the explanation.
"I will call doctor Richter for an appointment, ok?"
The doctor picked up the phone and dialed a number.
Murdock watched him talking to Richter.
"Mr Murdock wants to make an appointment. . .Yes. . . Yes. . . I think that's okay. . . I will tell him right now. . . Yes, I'll tell him. Wait a minute."
The doctor turned to Murdock.
"You can come tonight at six o' clock, is that ok?"
"Doctor Richter? . . . Yes, it's okay . .yes. . . Goodbye doctor."
"Don't forget your appointment, because the next available day is next week. You can go now."
"Thanks, doc." Murdock said.
"Don't mention it." The doctor smiled.
"That will be fifteen dollars and twenty three cents." Face sat behind the counter of the shop. Hannibal and BA were putting some products on the shelves. Hannibal walked towards Face. "Could you announce our customers we're closing up for lunch?" He asked.
"Okay." Face picked up the phone and dialed one-two-three. His voice sounded all through the store. """Attention Ladies and Gentlemen. Our store is closing for the afternoon in a few minutes. We will be closed from eleven o' clock until one o' clock. In a few minutes our counter will be closed. Thank you.""" Some people came walking towards the counter and Face started calculating the amount due.
"Thank you for shopping at our supermarket." Hannibal said.
"Don't you stand there. Help packing." Face ordered him.
Hannibal got some boxes and helped a customer packing.
"Excuse me, sir. Could you deliver this at my house?"
"Ofcourse we could. We deliver half an hour after closing time. That'll be around five o' clock. Is that okay?"
"Yes, that will be fine. Thank you."
"Could I have your address please?"
After Face wrote down the address, he helped some other customers. And after that they ate their lunch.
"I'll call Murdock today. To see if he's doing better."
Face decided. "Maybe we can get him over here next week. He can help us with the store. Even though the regular customers still do their shoppings here, we could also use some new ones."
"Okay, we could use the help. But the phonecall will have to wait until tonight. A new shipment of products is coming in around two o' clock. We have to fill the shelves, help customers and after closing time we still have some deliveries to do." Hannibal replied. " By the way, how's our profit coming?"
"I guess we'll earn back the invested money. . MY money in about two weeks. The products sell well. I can't figure out why the previous owners sold it to you so easily, Hannibal."
"I didn't exactly meet them. I did hear it were two elderly brothers who were running the store."
"Maybe they wanted some rest." BA suggested.
"I guess. A shop is a big responsibility. I don't think we will, and can, keep this shop for long. We can't stay in one place for too long." Face replied.
"And If the profit gets big, we can donate some money. We don't need that much money."
"I agree with you Hannibal. Now let's end this debate. We have to get to work again." As if it wanted to underline Face's words, the clock stroke one, followed by a little song.
"Aw man, I am going to change that tune." BA picked the clock from the wall. "A christmas song in the middle of july, you've gotta be kidding me."
Face smiled. "There's nobody you can blame. Unless you want to get the previous owners back. They bought it. Now let's get to work."
"Hi, Murdock! How are you doing?" Someone approached him in the hallway. Someone he used to talk to during lunch: Carl.
"I'm fine, thanks."
"Good to hear. You really looked dreadful yesterday. Maybe you picked up a cold while you were away. God punishes immediately." Carl lauged.
"Well, It wasn't the first and definately not the last time I got outta here." Murdock went along with the joke. "Besides, If He's supposed to punish immediately, he has a lot of catching up to do."
"""Attention Ladies and Gentlemen. We are going to close in a few minutes. Thank you for doing your shoppings here. We will be doing our deliveries in half an hour. We offer this service for free. We hope to see you again."""
BA was getting the van to park it out front of the store. Hannibal was getting the deliveries from the warehouse and Face was closing up the shop itself. Suddenly Hannibal and Face heard BA. "Hey! Get away from here you!"
Face and Hannibal came running to the front of the shop. They saw some kids and some teenagers sitting on the staircase. Hannibal closely observed him. "They look stoned." he whispered. "They are." Face replied. "They don't care about anything anymore. And that's exactly how they look. There's nobody home." The kids and teenagers slowly stood up. They stumbled away from the staircase and disappeared around the corner.
"Good thing they're gone." BA growled. "Stupid junkies."
"Did you notice most of them were just children?" Face asked shocked.
"They were awfully young." Hannibal nodded. "And they were stoned." He repeated.
"Yeah. But dealers don't care. They just want to make money. Come on, let's start delivering."
"Hi, Mudock. Face here." Face sounded cheeful. He was happy to talk to his friend again.
"Hey Faceman!! How's everything there? How is everything going with the shop?"
"Great. I think we'll earn the invested money back in about two weeks. But how are you? You didn't sound that well last time I called."
"I know. I didn't feel that well. And I had a nightmare. The doctor thinks it's psychosomatic."
"That's not so good. It's very hard to find the cause. Especially with you." Face laughed.
"You know what psychosomatic means? I had to ask the doctor."
"Yep. If something bothers you, your body can get sick. Just take it easy and try to talk about it with Richter. I'll visit you in a few days ok? I can't talk much longer. We are starting the deliveries"
"Bye Murdock. See you in a few days." Face hung up the phone. It was good to hear everything was allright.
"So, Murdock. What's bothering you?"
That's why Murdock liked Richter. He was honest and straight-to-the-point.
Murdock sat down in a chair.
"I don't know. That's the problem, I guess.The doc thought it was psychosomatic. Something is wrong and I don't know what. "
"Let's start with one thing at a time." Richter calmed him down. "How do you feel right now?"
"Right now I feel okay." Murdock stopped talking, wondering what else he could say. "But this night and a night ago I didn't."
"Can you describe what happened?" Richter took a small notebook from his desk.
"Well, " Murdock paused "a night ago I woke up after having a dream and I. . ."
"A dream?" Richter interrupted him. "Tell me about it."
"It's an old dream. It's been a while ago since I had it. But the last two nights I woke up after dreaming a part of it."
"A part of it?"
"Yes. It was different from the dream I used to have."
"Tell me your dream."
"The usual dream or the other one?"
"The other one first. Then tell me what should have happened."
"Well, I'm on top of a building.
It's so high I can see the clouds from above.
I turn around and walk away from the edge.
Then I stop.
I turn around and run towards the edge. . and I jump.
I don't fall.
I am flying.
But suddenly I do start falling.
I see the ground approaching.
I feel pain.
I fall faster and faster and then. . I wake up."
"What should have happened?"
"I shouldn't have fallen, that's what! That never happened before. Why now?!?!" Murdock got upset.
"How did you feel when you woke up?" Richter continued asking questions.
"The first night I felt sick and dizzy. I finally got to the bathroom and threw up.
And the second night I woke up feeling really drowsy. But I didn't throw up.
So I wanted to get another aspirin. But I fell on my knees trying to get up. So I crawled back in bed."
"What time was it when you woke up?"
"I don't know. I didn't exactly think of looking at my alarm clock. I guess it was about midnight. Both times."
"And how did you feel in the morning?"
"I felt okay. I didn't feel dizzy or drowsy."
Richter stopped making notes.
"I will try to find out what might be the problem. I will let you know when I have found something. But it could also be just a cold or something like that. When there's something else, just let me know. ok?"
"Now, just try not to worry. Goodnight Murdock."
"Goodnight." Murdock walked out of Richter's office. Talking about what happened did make him feel relieved. But it also brought up more questions.
Why now? Why did his dream change?
"I think we can start giving him more. These were just tiny doses."
"I agree. Heroin can be accepted by the body very quickly. He won't immediately be addicted, but 'after more intensive use the phisical dependance grows'. Read that once. I think it will take a few days. Then we can confront him with it."
Someone else joined the conversation.
"I have been keeping an eye on him. He went to that doctor Richter today. I heard them talking as I was in the waiting room. Last night he didn't throw up. He only felt 'drowsy', as he described it. We can raise the dose." "Good work, Carl. I have been busy keeping clients away from the team. They won't have any reasons to visit him. Except for Peck. He calls quite often. He might become a problem."
"No he won't. If he is in our way, we can drug him too. We might not be able to visit him every night, but if necessary we can get to him too."
He was falling. He felt some pain. But less than last nights.
*Where is the rest of my dream?*
His question was left unanswered. He woke up again.
He lay on his back and opened his eyes.
He felt relaxed.
He stared at the ceiling.
He felt. . untroubled.
Away from his problems.
This felt like flying.
This felt nice.
He was feeling all fuzzy inside.
He lost sense of time, sense of feelings.
Sense of pretty much everything.
Nothing bothered him anymore.
Some hours later he woke up. He felt sick. Even worse this time. He hurried to the bathroom. Just in time. He threw up.
"How are you feeling?" Richter sat down on Murdock's bed.
"Sick. I am sweaty and I have a runny nose."
"Cramp in the stomach." He gasped out.
"I think we'd better send you to the VHD."
"That's in the new wing. We are going to call it the VA Hospital Department: VHD."
Murdock nodded and then gasped.
"Cramp again?" Richter didn't wait for an answer. He walked out of Murdock's room and came back with a nurse and a hospital bed. They carefully helped him on the bed and drove him to the new wing.
"This could be a problem. He's in the new wing now. How are we going to give the stuff to him now?"
"You forgot about Sam."
"Sam? Oh, Samantha. And you forgot she doesn't work for us anymore."
"She does a lot for money. She can give Murdock the stuff in broad daylight.
And we will do it at night."
"I think that will work. But he will find out eventually. We have to think of that as well."
"So? By the time he finds out what's going on, his body will be screaming for the stuff. The withdrawal symptoms will kill him. He's already showing some. And besides, he'll probably miss the feeling, the rush."
"You know an awful lot about this stuff."
"I used to be a dealer. I saw some people die from withdrawal symptoms."
"Murdock!" Face ran towards him.
"How are you doing?"
Murdock smiled. "Do you have to ask?" *gasp*
"What's wrong? Murdock? Nurse!!"
"Cramp." Murdock replied.
"What's wrong Mr?" A young nurse came walking towards Face and Murdock.
"No. . I'm fine, Samantha. Just the cramps again." Murdock replied.
The nurse walked away again.
"Why didn't you call me? If I had known you were sick, I'd have come straight away."
"The cramps only started this morning. I did feel a little sick two days ago, but yesterday I felt okay."
Face looked at Murdock worried.
"I'll be fine Faceman. I'll be back on my feet tomorrow, I promise."
"I am coming to check on you tomorrow to see if you're right. ok?"
"Ok. You have to go now. Visiting hour is over."
Face didn't see the painful expression on Murdock's face.
"Hey Face! How's Murdock doing?" Hannibal asked cheerfully. He was busy painting a logo on the plate above the covering of the door. But then he noticed Face's sad look.
"Not so good Hannibal. He's in the Hospital Department in the new wing."
"Why's that?" Hannibal came down from the ladder.
"He felt sick this morning. And he has cramps in his stomach."
"That's not so good."
"We'll visit him soon, okay?"
Face didn't anwswer. He went into the shop. He almost bumped into BA.
"Hey! Watch where you're going!"
"Sorry BA." Face walked to his room.
BA looked at Face worried. He went to Hannibal.
"What's wrong with him?"
Hannibal looked down from the ladder he had just gone up again. "Murdock's sick."
"Yeah. Cramps in the stomach. I told Face we'll visit Murdock soon."
"Okay. I'm going to clean up the van now. I even found vegetables in the drivers-seat."
Hannibal seemed amused.
"What's funny about that? Sitting on lettuce isn't that comfortable."
Hannibal tried not to come down of the ladder the uneasy way while he was laughing at the thought of BA sitting on lettuce. BA quickly grabbed the ladder.
"I don't mind you laughing, but don't fall on top of me."
"What? A member of the A-Team?"
"Keep your voice down!" Someone at the other side of the line hissed.
"Yes, he's a member of the A-Team."
"That can't be . . ."
"He is. Why do you think he escapes from the VA so often? Look, I have no time to explain everything. I have a job for you."
"You forgot I don't work for you anymore." came the angry reply.
"You will if you hear the reward for capturing them. There's big bucks in it for you. Not the usual we payed you. We'll triple it when our plan works.
Besides, you still owe me one."
*sigh* "What do you want me to do?"
"That's the spirit, Sam! You still know where Jimmy hangs out?"
"The heroin dealer? Oh, I get the idea. Do I have to pay for the stuff myself or?"
"No, he's in on the plan. You can get the stuff from him for free. Just don't fail."
"No." Samantha hung up the phone. She sighed. *No matter how many times you say you're out, they always pull you back in.* She took her coat off the hatstand, got in her car and drove away.
Murdock lay on the hospital bed. He was breathing hard.
"Still in pain?" Samantha came walking towards him.
"I can give you something that will decrease the pain. If you want that."
"Yes. Please." Murdock said uneasy. "I think it's getting worse."
"Okay. Wait a minute." She walked away. A few seconds later she came back.
"This might hurt a bit." Samantha looked for the spot on his arm that was soft. They had been shooting him there. *I'd better stick to that spot.* She gave him the injection.
"When it starts to work, you might feel a bit drowsy."
"Hey Murdock! . . . Murdock? . . . Murdock!"
Murdock was looking where the sound was coming from. *Hey! That's Face!* He suddenly realized.
"Murdock? Are you feeling okay?"
*Face just asked me something. What did he ask me?*
"Murdock? Why aren't you responding? Murdock!"
"Hi." He finally responded.
Samantha came walking towards Face. "Go easy on the interrogation." She smiled. "I gave him something to lessen the pain. But it also slows him down a bit."
"I can see that." Face laughed. He started to wave his hand in front of Murdock. Murdock's eyes were about 2 inches behind on his hand. Face couldn't help it. It was such a dumb sight. He started to laugh.
"You're laughing." Murdock slowly said.
"That's because you look silly. I don't think I am going to get one sensable word out of you. I'll come back tomorrow. Maybe I can get Hannibal and BA to come along."
Face waited a few minutes. "Okay." Murdock said.
Face walked away, still laughing.
Murdock stared at the ceiling enjoying the fuzzy feeling. This felt nice. He smiled. Someone came walking towards him. It was Samantha. "Hi." He said. "How are you feeling?" she asked him.
"It might wear off in about half an hour. I am going to check on some other patients now."
The pain came back. Murdock lay all curled up on the bed.
"I see it's worn off." Samantha came walking towards him. "If it's necessary I can give you an injection again. But that will be no sooner than three o' clock."
Face came walking into the shop laughing.
"What's so funny?" BA asked him.
"Well, actually it isn't nice to laugh at someone." Face managed to say. "But it was so funny. The nurse gave Murdock something to easen the pain. But he also got slower." Face was having tears in his eyes from laughing. "I waved my hand like this, see?" Face waved his hand. "And Murdock tried to follow my hand but his eyes were a few inches behind on my hand. You should have seen it."
Hannibal came walking towards Face. "Are you feeling alright, Lieutanant?"
"I'm fine." Face said. He had stopped laughing. "I'm laughing about Murdock."
Face told Hannibal the whole story.
"That sounds funny." Hannibal said.
"It is." Face replied. "I promised Murdock you two will come along with me tomorrow. Is that okay?"
"If you promised him, we'll come along."
"You have to make sure they don't come. Peck already saw Murdock once. He might get suspicious when Murdock's drugged all the time."
"Leave everything to us. They won't come tomorrow. I'll make some phonecalls. They'll be occupied for a while."
"Josh? I want you to do something for me tomorrow."
"Get all the customers out of the shop. Now!" BA came running towards Hannibal.
"Fire! Go! Get everybody out of the shop!"
Hannibal ran towards Face. "Tell everybody to leave the shop!"
"There's fire. Get all the customers out of here!" Hannibal grabbed a fire extinguisher off the wall and ran towards BA who also had one in his hands.
In the meanwhile Face's voice sounded through the shop. """Attention Ladies and Gentlemen. Please leave your shoppings behind and go to the exit. Please stay calm and walk towards the exit."""
After that he quickly dialed 9-1-1
""" Hannibal! The phone's dead!"""
"The storehouse is completely burned out. I just checked it out." BA told Face.
Hannibal was talking to some officers. He pointed to BA. "He discovered the fire."
The officers came walking to BA. "Could you tell us what happened?"
"Well, I was checking the supplies when I smelled smoke. And smoke usually means fire. So I walked towards the back of the storehouse to check it out and I saw fire." BA simply explained.
"What did you do?"
"I ran to the shop to make sure the customers got outta there. Then I tried to put out the fire together with Hannibal, but it didn't work. The fire was spreading real fast.
"What caused the fire?"
Face interrupted BA who was about to give an answer. "The phone was dead. I think someone started the fire."
One of the officers wrote it down.
"We have to get things going again. We don't have a storehouse, but at least we've got the shop."
"Maybe we can create a little storehouse if we divide the shop in two parts." Face suggested.
"That might work. I can make a screen to separate the two parts." BA replied. "And we have to get new products as quick as possible."
Face took a little notebook and wrote down some numbers. "I think we're going to lose a lot of money on this. It will take a while before we get some profit out from the shop."
Hannibal looked at his watch. "It's six o' clock now. First, let's have dinner."
"Six o' clock? I completely forgot about Murdock!" Face shook up.
"You can call him soon. He'll be fine. We will visit him tomorrow. Promised. Let's eat."
Murdock screamed of pain. It was the middle of the night and the drug wore off. He had been given several injections against the pain today. And yesterday as well. But now the last one was losing its effect. Suddenly he heard someone coming his way.
It was a man. He was walking towards Murdock.
"I am from the night shift. You have to be more quiet."
"Pain. Need another injection." Murdock moaned.
The man gave Murdock the injection.
As Murdock dozed off the strange man drove his bed away.
"What!?!" Face yelled.
"I'm sorry sir. He's no longer here. I think he's escaped again. If you give us your phone-number we will call you as soon as we know something."
"Y-Yes. Thank you."
Hannibal came walking into the kitchen. He saw Face's expression. Face just hung up the phone and sank into a chair.
"What's wrong?" Hannibal asked.
"Murdock. He's gone."
"What do you mean gone?"
"Who's gone?" BA came walking into the kitchen too.
"Murdock. He isn't at the VA." Face replied.
"What? Why would he leave the VA?"
"That's what worries me. Especially since he's sick. He hasn't got any reason to leave there. Hannibal, we have to find him."
"Take it easy, kid. Maybe he's coming to see us. He's always alone at the VA, you know."
"We can't just sit here and wait. Something's wrong."
"What makes you think that?" BA asked Face.
"I am the one who's been visiting him. He's sick, Hannibal. We have to find him."
"Take it easy, Lieutanant. Even if something's wrong, we don't know where to start looking."
"Richter. And the other doctors. And the nurse. We can ask them about Murdock. They have to know something."
"Alright. We'll ask them. But you have to realize they might be as clueless as we are. Don't start exspecting something."
"I only saw him once this week." Richter said.
"Do you have any idea where he might have gone?" Face asked again.
"No. He came to me because he didn't feel so well. I suspected it might be psychosomatic."
"Psycho-what?" Hannibal and BA asked.
"Psychosomatic." Face said. "When something is bothering you, it can affect your body.
Did he say anything that could give us a clue?"
"No. He only sounded tired."
Face sighed deeply. "Thanks anyway. Do you know where nurse Samantha is?"
"I think she's in the new Hospital Department in the new wing."
"Oh, there's also a guy named Carl missing. Maybe there's a connection."
"Maybe. We'll keep an eye out for him."
The three men left Richter's office.
"Why did you ask for this Samantha?" Hannibal asked.
"She took care of Murdock. She might know something."
As they walked through the hallway, they almost bumped into a young woman running in the other direction, towards the exit.
"That's her!" Face yelled. He turned around and immediately sprinted after her. Hannibal and BA looked at eachother. Hannibal shrugged his shoulders and they both ran after Face and the young lady.
"Samantha!" Face saw her running towards the parking lot. *Why is she running?* Face pulled his gun. He ran into the parking lot and saw her getting into her car. He ran towards the car, opened the door. "Stop it right there lady!" He aimed his gun at. . a chair.
Then he felt a pain in his neck. And everything turned black. A man came walking from behind the car.
"Well done, Sam. Now get the hell out of here before those other two arrive."
"What about Peck?"
"I'll take care of Peck. Go!! I'll see you at the cafe."
She hit the gas and drove away.
"There she is!"
Hannibal didn't have the time to reply. He pulled his gun and started firing at the car.
Too late. The car was out of range.
"Shit." Hannibal cursed a few times. He didn't pay attention to another car coming out of the parking lot.
Samantha parked her car on the parking place of a small cafe. From the other direction another car approached. She got out of her car and walked towards it. A man got out.
"What do we do with Peck, Mike? Why did you take him along?"
"He saw you. He knows you're involved. Help me get him out of the car. By the way, nice hit."
She helped Mike getting Face out of the car. Together they lifted him from the ground. They walked around the cafe and entered through the backdoor.
"We got Murdock some company." Mike laughed as he and Samantha walked into the basement of the cafe. "Josh, you get back into the cafe. We still have some customers. Tell them we're closing early."
Face opened his eyes. He blinked a few times. His eyes first had to get used to the low light.
"Back amongst the living, eh?" Mike asked him.
"Face?" He heard Murdock's worried voice.
He saw Murdock curled up next to him on the floor.
"Murdock." Face tried to sit up straight against the wall.
The men in the room left. They locked the door. Face turned his head to Murdock.
"Murdock? How are you feeling?" He said.
Murdock didn't reply.
"Murdock? What's going on?"
"Face. . ."
"What's next, Mike?"
"We'll send the other two a message soon."
"What about Peck? He might cause trouble."
"Three against one? I don't think so. . ."
Hannibal cursed under his breath. So did BA.
"We have to do something."
"Like what? We can't help them now, Hannibal. We don't know where they are."
"We HAVE to get Face and Murdock back!"
Face looked at his friend. Murdock had gone through a lot lately. But why hadn't Murdock told him what happened earlier? Because he didn't know what was going on either, that's why.
*Heroin is dangerous stuff. They're turning Murdock into an addict. And if this goes on much longer he'll be one . . . without wanting it.*
Face suddenly heard something. Someone was coming.
*I'll make them pay for what they did to you, my friend.*
Face got up. He quickly started looking for something he could use as weapon.
He decided to use one of the chairs in the room. *Better than nothing.* He heard someone unlocking the door. Face took his position behind it. The door handle went down and the door opened. A man came walking inside.
Face quickly knocked him down. But before he lifted the chair again, someone else pointed a gun at him. "Don't even try it." Face put the chair down and walked back to Murdock. He sat down on the floor. *At least I got one of them real hard.*
"Carl! Wake up." Mike sat down next to the guy Face just knocked down. He was regaining consiousness already.
"Carl?" Murdock shook up.
Mike helped him getting up. "Are you alright?"
"Yeah. I'm fine."
Carl looked at Murdock.
"Hi Murdock." Murdock recognized the face. It WAS Carl.
Josh came walking in. He walked towards Murdock who was still having cramp in his stomach. He was going to give him a shot.
"NO!" Face shouted. "I won't let you."
Josh stood still in front of Face. "You're not worth that much dead. But by now the withdrawal symptoms can kill him. Choose."
Face looked Josh in the eyes. He knew he was right. It could kill him. What to do? He looked around at Murdock. He could see the sweat on his forehead.
Face stepped aside. Josh kneeled down near Murdock. He gave him the shot.
When he came walking back he gave Face a look of complete satisfaction. That was more than Face could handle. He jumped on top of Josh. Beating him, kicking him. Even biting him. The door opened and Mike came running in. He had heard the noise. "Josh!" He quickly grabbed Face by the neck and, with some help of Josh, threw him against the wall. He handed his gun to Josh.
"Don't leave him out of your sight." Face sat against the wall. He was so angry he wouldn't even care if 'Josh' fired the gun. Mike came back in. It wasn't hard to guess what they were up to. Carl came in as well. Face got up. Josh came closer to him. "Sit down."
Face didn't reply. It would break the spell that was now driving him on. Mike and Carl also approached him. Carl jumped towards Face and grabbed his arms. He was trying to get Face on the ground. Josh gave his gun to Mike and helped Carl. Even though Face was prepared to fight, he didn't stand a chance against two men. He did his very best. He tried to kick them off him, but one of them grabbed his leg so he fell backwards against the same wall he had met before. Soon they got him on the ground. Face saw Mike coming as well. Mike grabbed his arm and tucked up his sleeve. Face was still struggling to free himself, but then he felt a slight pain in his arm and he lost consiousness.
"And the lights go out." Mike laughed. "That should keep him quiet for a while. I'll go get a bucket. They usually throw up the first time."
After a few hours Face opened his eyes again. He felt drowsy.
"Face?" He heard Murdock's voice. He turned his head to face Murdock.
"Face? Can you hear me?"
"I hear you, Murdock." Face pulled himself up to sit against the wall.
"How are you feeling?" Murdock looked at Face worried.
"I'll live. Thanks."
"At least you didn't throw up. I did first time." Murdock gave Face a vague smile.
Face didn't reply. He fixed his eyes upon the wall and sighed deeply.
"So did I."
"Now, we've got Peck and Murdock. That leaves Baracus and Smith. I think we could use some backup now. Peck played our game nicely, but Baracus and Smith know we're coming for them."
"I know some more 'friends'. I think I know just the way. . "
"You used to be a drug-dealer, you know some friends. Are there more things you haven't told us, Carl?"
"Nope. That about covers it." Carl smiled.
He was already getting used to the feeling again. But he still felt drowsy. He was staring at the wall.
"Face?" It was Murdock.
"Mmmh? I-I'm okay." Face tried to focus on Murdock's eyes.
"Face. . . what did you mean with 'so did I' ?" Murdock waited a while for an answer, but he didn't get one. Face looked at the wall again. He had heard the question. But the answer. . He had never told anyone the answer.
Nobody ever asked. So he kept all his secret's a secret. His past was also very hard to talk about. But he was back. Back into a dream. To dream this dream again. That thought had never before left Face's closed mind. For after coming back , that dream would quickly disappear and make place for reality. And the urge to return to it would be almost irresistable.
"Five." He said. He turned to face Murdock again.
Murdock watched him closely. "Five?"
"I was about five years old. Then I came in the orphanage. What did I do before that?"
Murdock didn't say anything. He didn't have the answer. Only Face had it.
"I lived on the streets." Face closed his eyes for a moment.
"I was young, hungry. Alone." Again Face paused.
"Some older kids came to me. They told me they had something that would make me feel better."
Suddenly Murdock realized: Heroin. He waited for Face to tell more. But Face didn't say anything anymore. He was watching his memories. He saw a little kid. A boy . . . A boy with blond hair and beautiful blue eyes. They showed hunger, lonelyness, cold. And then he saw. . . nothing.
He shook up from the sound of someone unlocking the door. It was a man. It was. . .Face.
"Hello, Lieutenant Templeton Peck." He didn't sound like Face. But he looked like Face.
He waited a while. "Aren't you going to say anything?" He stepped forward.
"What do I. . . " Face stopped in the middle of his sentence. He realized what he did. "Shit!"
"Thank you." Now the voice sounded almost exactly like Face's. The man walked back to the door.
"Wait! Come back!" Face tried to get up. He had to lean against the wall.
But the door closed and was locked. Only silence left behind. Face sat down again. He made a fist.
"We have to get out of here. Hannibal and BA are next."
"Don't try it, Face. You don't stand a chance. They'll heavily sedate you if you do. It's no use."
"I don't care. I have to warn them. I'll come back for you soon. Just don't try to stop me."
"Nothing. Her file is missing." Hannibal had gone to the VA to find out something about Samantha.
"What's next?" BA looked up from the hood of the van.
"We have to wait. I don't know anything else we can. . . Face!!"
BA quickly shut the hood of the van and ran after Hannibal. He just disappeared around the corner.
BA turned around the corner and saw . . . Hannibal laying on the ground.
"Reach for the sky." He heard Face's voice and turned around.
It was Face, but he was pointing a gun at him.
He picked a mobile phone out of his pocket and dialed a number.
"I've got them. All we've got to do now is make some phonecalls to collect the money."
"Money? Face, what the hell are you doing?!?"
"Capturing the A-Team."
"Dammit! Now we have to go after Peck again. We need lots of help now." Mike locked the basement.
"There's a couple of things he might do. He'll probably try to get out of town."
"I know some more people who can help." Carl offered.
"More? I thought that Peck look-a-like, Mr. what's-his-name, was about it."
"His name is Dirk. And he knows people in the mafia. They can help us by blocking some roads. We have to leave some roads open, because we don't want the gouvernment on our back."
"I don't think they'll do it for free, do you? We'll have to split the reward in even more pieces. . ."
"They won't ask that much, I think. The A-Team once rounded up one of their organizations."
"I think we're getting somewhere here. Start making some phonecalls."
*I have to get out of town. I have to get help.* Face drove on the highway towards the edge of town.
*Shit! Roadblock.* He slowed down and stopped in front of some men. He coughed a bit and pulled his cap down a bit. "Excuse me."
One of the men came walking towards him. "Yes?"
"Err.. How do I drive to Langley? I was supposed to go this way."
"You have to turn around and take the exit towards Washington. The first exit you see takes you to Langley."
"Thank you." Face turned around and drove for the exit to Washington.
Hannibal opened his eyes. He saw BA sitting next to someone curled up in a corner of the room. He looked worried. He got up. And then he saw who BA was sitting next to. It was Murdock. "Murdock! Am I glad to see y. . " BA shook his head. "Hannibal. . We're in big trouble."
*There she is!* Face carefully walked over the marketplace. He couldn't risk being seen. He walked towards a young woman and pushed a note in her hands. Then he turned around and he quickly walked away.
Amy turned around. Someone had pushed a note in her hands. She unfolded it.
"Contact Maggie and Tawnia. In six hours in front of the cinema. Hurry. TAT." TAT. . . The A-Team. "They're in trouble." She turned around and ran towards her car.
*In what mess did you get yourselves in this time?*
"What?!" Hannibal looked confused. He felt so many emotions, he couldn't express it.
"All we can do is hoping Face doesn't get caught."
"Hello? Maggie, is that you?"
"Amy? Let me guess . . "
"I got a note. I don't know what's going on, but I think they're in serious trouble this time."
"I'm on my way."
"Meet me in front of the cinema in Langley in about six hours. I'm going to call Tawnia."
In the shadow of an alley across the street someone waited patiently. It was a man. He had red hair and wore a leather jacket. The lights of the cinema flashed, indicating the upcoming movies. A car stopped on one of the parking places. A young woman got out and walked towards the front of the cinema. A few minutes later another woman joined her. The man waited a little longer. Finally a third lady arrived. The man sighed deeply. He took a few steps towards the cinema. They should be able to see him. He brought his fingers to his lips and whistled.
Amy, Maggie and Tawnia shook up. Someone had whistled. They looked around to see where the sound came from. Across the street, in one of the alleys, they saw someone hidden in the shadow, waving at them. "We have to be careful." Maggie warned. "If it isn't one of the guys, we're in no end of a mess. I'll go first." Maggie crossed the street and disappeared in the alley. A few seconds later she beckoned Amy and Tawnia to come. They quickly crossed the street and followed Maggie in the alley.
Amy saw a man standing against the wall. He wore a leather jacket and had red hairs.
"Face! What did you do to your hair!?!
NOT TBC. . . writers block.