The Angel Of Death


azrael_icon.gif cassidy2_icon.gif coren2_icon.gif elisabeth_icon.gif lola_icon.gif

Scene Title The Angel Of Death
Synopsis Coren, Liz, and Lola go for a face-off against Azrael in a fight to save Cassidy's soul.
Date September 10, 2009

Oak Forest, Illinois

12 Hours Ago

When Coren received the call from Liz that the FBI in Chicago had found his car near the Midlothian Reservoir in Illinois, his heart skipped a beat. It was five o'clock in the morning. With great trepidation, he called the JFK International a booked three seats on a flight to Chicago, and then called the number Lola left for him to reach her. "Airport, two hours." Even though it would be three.

9 Hours Ago

Detectives Elisabeth Harrison and Coren Shelby board a flight with the eccentric Marie Sophia Clemens at JFK International to Chicago O'Hare International. Needless to say, Coren is jittery the entire flight, and it feels like days rather than the few hours it actually is.

6 Hours Ago

"At three o'clock this morning, central time, my nineteen eighty-three Chevrolet Malibu coupe was discovered roughly thirteen miles from Oak Forest. This is the man spotted at the service station three miles away," Coren says, gesturing to the sketch rendition of Azrael from within the Chicago field office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. "This man is extremely dangerous, and nobody should hesitate to shoot him. What we know is this: He's highly intelligent, obsessive, and sadistic. He will kill you if you get in his way and he will not hesitate. To the best of our knowledge, he's been active for the past ten years, particularly concentrated around now and ten years ago. His victims look to have killed themselves, usually in bloody fashion. This man is evolved, ladies and gentlemen. He can possess you and make you kill yourself. And he won't hesitate, which is why you must not.

"Clemens has point on this one. She won't miss. If anyone else gets a clear shot of his head, though, don't hesitate to put a bullet in it. Now comes the complicated part. My partner has an empathic ability that has bonded us mentally and emotionally. That same ability has affected Detective Harrison, though to a thankfully lesser extent. We know for a fact that Cassidy O'Shea has been tortured, and we may become incapacitated or in need of sedation. Do not let this get in the way of doing your jobs.

"The link … O'Shea and I share allows me to pinpoint her, my best guess being within a radius of roughly twenty, maybe twenty-five miles. We are under the assumption that Azrael is holding Cassidy within some sort of wooden structure, probably a cabin or a workshop in an area surrounded by greenery. As such, our first search priority are all of the forested areas between the Palisades and the Lansing Woods Forest Preserve. As Azrael has a particular history with the Oak Forest area, I have suggested that the forests directly surrounding that area be searched first. It's a small area, ladies and gentlemen. Once I get a read on O'Shea's location, we triangulate an approximate position and send in teams. I don't know if Azrael can abuse her ability to find out we're coming, and I don't intend to stay within range of her long enough to find out until we are in position.

"We will be cooperating with the Oak Forest Police Department and the Illinois State Police Tactical Response Team, along with paramedics from both Chicago and Oak Forest. The first person to get a bead on Azrael is to take him out. Give him any notice beforehand and he may well take you over, and that is something we cannot afford."

1 Hour Ago

It's three o'clock in the afternoon central time as Coren sits in the passenger seat alongside Liz, with Lola in the back seat, on one of the roads outside the woody areas of Illinois, near the Oak Forest area. It didn't take them long to determine Cassidy was there. Oak Forest is close enough to Chicago that as soon as they passed the airport he felt her. Only she was asleep. He hadn't counted on that, but made his own contingency plan. Plain old triangulation. If he finds three to five points at which she's no longer there, save for that vague feeling that she's still alive, they should be able to determine a position.

He's mostly reclined in his seat, Lola in the back with the rifle lent to them by the state police tactical response team after giving her a brief run-down on how to operate it. Hands clenched into fists, he waits with bated breath for that fuzzy feeling of her sleeping to fade into the silence that means he's no longer in range.

Lola Mayeux, A.K.A. Marie Sophia Clemens is asleep, rifle curled in her lap. It's loaded, but the safety is on. Safety off, remove the cover … pretty simple stuff, really. Most people might not be asleep when they're going to kill someone. Most people might be worried, anticipated, freaking out. Lola's insides are doing sumersaults, it's true. But how can one be fully focues if one has not had her rest? Besides, all this travel is dull. And Coren made her get up early.

She snores. And drools. What a little angel. But as the car hits a bump along the little journey, it rouses her with a start. "Where's my milk!" She demands, sounding lost and confused.

The addition of a shooter to the team was more than a little unexpected, and Elisabeth pulled Coren aside at the airport to object vociferously to the addition of this unknown, uncredentialed person on an official police investigation. The brass at the PD were willing to let both Coren and Liz go because in theory they are here as consultants and in Coren's case a human dowsing rod. "What the fuck are you thinking, bringing in someone JACK recommended? Are you insane?? I want her alive as much as you do — and I want to cover your ass as hard as you've covered mine. But there's going to be serious heat on this with the brass!" She is incensed. "It's one thing to cover for each other when we're working off the books — but this is as far from *off* the books as you can get, and they're going to ask. If you'd given me a couple days' notice that you intended this, I might have been able to get her some almost-real credentials, but Coren…. there's not a goddamn thing I can do here!" She does have a couple strings she can pull sometimes, but … not with no warning! "I'll keep my mouth shut on this — it's on you to do the talking. So far as I'm concerned, I assumed she was on loan from SWAT or something; I never asked. It's the only cover I can give you," she offers regretfully.

By the time they get to Illinois, though, she's all about the here and now. No point in bitching when you've got nothing better to go on. And if the woman can take the shot… more power to her. Mostly she's just along for the ride until they get there.

"Stop here," Coren says. "Pull over." He pulls out his map and the pen he's been poking holes through it with for a while and looks it over, taking a peek around to figure out where the are. The little GPS on the car's dash helps him match up with the paper map and he pokes the fourth hole. Then he stops ignoring the childish antics from the back seat. There's some rummaging from down hear his feet and a plastic bottle is tossed into the back seat. "All we have is Powerade." Not quite true. They'd had some Red Bull and a few other energy drinks at one point. Coren hasn't slept since the sixth, and even he is starting to wear down from it. Of course, all of the caffeine hasn't helped his jittering at all, though that hasn't stopped him from packing his back-up weapon. His service weapon is strapped to his desk like he was.

Coren pulls the map up to use the afternoon sun to shine through the holes through it. He squints at the lines, trying to see a finite centre-point. "We need a fifth point," he says, his tone echoing the frustration he knows Liz feels as well. How can't she? He follows one of the roads with his fingers. "Take the next left." Because he really wants to be driving around for another hour.

Lola lets out a soft 'oof' as the drink catches her lap. "What?" She asks, blinking, rubbing her eyes. She doesn't seem to know what's going on - apparently the milk was something left over from part of her dream. She sets the drink aside and scoots to the center seat. A hand on the back of each seat allows her to slide forward, peering at each of them over the console separator.

"So are we there yet, er not? We've been drivin' around forever, feels like. Didn' even think Illinois was this big." She dropped out, don't be hatin. "An' where's this Jack guy, ain' he supposed to be with us?"

Driving around for hours in Illinois is not something she was expecting to do either, but Elisabeth is willing to do what it takes to locate the redheaded detective she calls friend. "Not that I was aware," the blonde cop says in a cool tone as she slants a questioning glance at Coren. Was that part of the plan that Liz was left out of as well? She puts the car into gear and heads for the next empty area on the map that Coren thinks will help narrow it down. But she suggests — "Get out your pen and start crossing those lines. Get even a smaller area of intersection, it might be far more useful than driving a fucking 100-mile around circle to work with. Four points should be plenty. You only really need three — if they're the right three — to triangulate a position."

Coren eyes Lola through the rearview mirror, "How old are you?" As it happens, he does in fact start playing connect the dots. It's just that the dots connect together and leave a five mile wide gap. "That's precisely the problem — they're not the right three. These roads aren't very convenient. Ten more minutes of driving and we should have the point that goes through the previous two. We wasted time trying the first three." He wasted time. He was driving for the first two. "And no, Mortimer isn't meeting us here, unless he planned ahead and drove here. He has a warrant on his ass. No bloody way he'd get through airport security, and I only bought three tickets."

"It's rude ta ask a lady her age, ya know," Lola points out very matter-of-factly to the man in the front seat. She looks at Liz, almost as if seeking someone to back her up on this, and nods sagely. Well it's very rude! "What's he got a warrant fer? Is it fer slicin' off some fellah's skull an then sittin' him up in front of a mirror an then crackin' his skull cap to prove he'd never put the fellah's head back on?" What? "It's just…somethin' he said when we met. He's a real creeper, ain' he?"

Elisabeth rubs her forehead and reaches for her bottle of water. Pulling a small bottle out of her pocket, she pops a pill and shoves the bottle back into her pocket while she swallows it with a gulp of water — having Lola behind her AT ALL is making the raging anxiety worse, and now the woman's talking about Mortimer Jack as a 'creeper'. Her stress levels are off the chart. She drives along for the next few minutes looking for the next spot on the map. "Tell me when," is all she says.

"It doesn't matter, now stay quiet," Coren says. He's already seen Liz have one panic attack, he'd rather not witness another while she's at the wheel of the car he's in. "When." It's more or less made as a joke, but it doesn't turn out that way. He feels something, though he's not entirely sure what it is. It feels distant, foggy. Then there's that pull. "Turn this car around and floor it. She's awake."

"Ya kin tell when she's awake? Bluughh!" It sounds like Lola is drowning. Like she's being sucked underwater just for a second. But no, that's just the sound she makes when Liz suddenly spins the car, and Lola ends up flying backwards, slamming hard against the back seat and catching the butt of her rifle on her nose. "Ouch!" But at least it keeps Lola busy enough to be quiet for a few minutes

Elisabeth swings the car around immediately on orders and says tersely, "If that fucking rifle discharges in this car, I will not be held accountable for the fact that you will likely not get out of the car alive." Why the woman has insisted on driving with the gun on her lap anyway — and with no seatbelt!! — Elisabeth is strained beyond belief to figure out. She follows Coren's directions anytime he sees fit to tell her to change course now. She can't feel Cassidy from here, her link is just not that strong. But the closer they get, the worse it will get. "Radio it in, Shelby." Bring in the backup, she means.

Which of course he's not quite doing yet as he's fiddling with the map on the dash. Coren marks with the pencil the direction he felt the pull in. It's a good enough point, intersects on two other lines, giving them at most, a square mile of woods to cover. Since she's awake, it will just be a matter of wading through the emotions he suspects will be pouring into him through that link. He pulls up the radio, "This is Shelby. Converge all units west of grid seven."


Four o'clock local time. The state police tactical response team van and several Oak Forest police cruisers are huddled together with Federal black SUVs between two ambulances. Coren, Elisabeth, and Lola are amidst several FBI agents, all of them vested and with radios.

"Our best guess is that it's the Winchester cabin. It's a cabin and old carpenter's workshop. The Winchesters have been dead for years, though, their son owns the property now and he hasn't been back here for a couple of years." The Interim Police Chief, Terence Sanders, is amidst the main group. "It's about a mile and a half from this road here," he says, indicating the place on the map. "I'd say it's about a half-hour hike from here. No access by road, though. They liked it good and quiet."

"Right," Coren says. He's very concerned. Elisabeth can probably feel it too. Cassidy's not quite there. She's awake, and they're only about a mile and a half away, and yet there's only this vague jumble of emotions coming for her. Once the police chief has walked off to brief some of his men, Coren places his hands on the hood of the chief's cruiser, fighting back tears. "I think she's in shock, Liz." He wipes at an eye. "Make sure the paramedics have everything ready." By everything, he means sedation for all three of them.

Elisabeth looks at Coren and tells the man, "I think you should stay here. Cassidy might give away your presence, but I can cover the entire phalanx of people doubletiming it down this road in silence and he'll never hear us coming. Hell, I can cover the fucking SUVs going in, if you want them."

Lola goes over the rifle again. It's getting close. She's becoming a bit more serious - a bit, anyway - with the thought that soon she might be killing someone. The rifle is strapped over her back, given a few taps. Don't worry gun, it'll be over soon. Somehow, she can't believe she's here. She can't believe just by saying 'I can help' she'd be with the cops, ready to shoot. She's wearing boots, black pants, and a brown jacket. Rockin' the neutrals.

"She might be right, ya know," Lola adds onto Elisabeth's idea. "I mean, I know ya prolly don' wanna cause yer in love with this girl an all, but ya said this guy'd make me kill myself if he sees me. I'd rather he not see me, or sense me or smell me, or however this whole thing works."

The chief turns away from his men when he hears Elisabeth's officer. "It's a bumpy drive, path hasn't been used in years, but if you can guarantee we go quiet, I say we go with everything we've got. Just gotta make sure headlights off; it'll be pretty dim in the clearing." He casts a bit of a look at Coren when Lola mentions how he's in love with the victim, but he doesn't say a word about it. "You do whatever it is you do." There's one last look at Coren, "And you might want to consider her offer. I don't like the idea of losing any of my men to some evolved nutjob because you got too close."

Coren looks somewhat surprised at Elisabeth's officer, considering just the other day he was saying to Liz how she didn't have to come. Now she's telling him he shouldn't. That almost hurts, until the chief says his bit. Then he comes to a realization. "With all due respect sir, I don't think Cassidy's there enough to let him know. She should have been aware we were here when she first woke up, but it's been nearly forty minutes and she's still not exactly there." When he says the last bit, it's with a bit of confusion, because he can't explain what it feels like. He should be close enough to hear her thoughts and yet there's nothing there. There are only foggy images bleeding through when he closes his eyes. If he didn't know any better, he'd think she were perfectly calm. "I'll stay back until he's been taken out. I'll even stay out of the convoy and walk, but I'll be damned if I'm not there when you find her."

Elisabeth's cool blue eyes on Coren never waver. Then she looks toward the chief. "I'm an audiokinetic, chief." She walks over to the map to check the topography. She points to where the driveway comes off the road. "Almost the entire mile and a half here is sheltered — you can't see the cabin until the last quarter mile?" she asks to verify, showing him the satellite photo. "I can cover two SUVs with a squad on foot in front or behind if you want them there — or one SUV and the ambulance. So long as everyone stays with in the borders, so to speak, of my range, nothing can get out, soundwise. They could be howling at the moon inside, and that fucker isn't going to hear shit." She points to a spot. "Once you hit here, and judging from where the sun is, your SWAT guys will be shadows in the dark under the trees. I can encase the cabin itself so that they don't have to worry about how far they spread out. And when we're ready to rock and roll, we can hit all doors and windows at once." She considers. "And I may be able to distract him, as well. If O'Shea's out of it enough that she's not sensing us get close, she's out of it enough that a little barfing is the least of her worries." She looks at the chief. "One of the side effects of a certain range of my talents includes basically incapacitating a human body. Give me about 15 seconds of sustained use and he'll be a puddle of goo on the floor projectile vomiting." She shrugs a bit. "You tell me how you can best use me and I'm yours as you see fit, sir."

Lola follows Liz - because there's a map over there. "What about me?" She finally asks, not looking at all like she belongs in this little bad. She stands on her toes to peer at the map, even though it isn't above her anything. She's just rocking a bit on her feet, a sign of the jitters, but nothing concerning. "Like I said, ya kin put me anywhere, so long as I'm in shootin' range. If there's a clear shot, I kin kill 'im, I just…I gotta know where ta be, ya know? Can' just be runnin' around. I especially don' wanna get myself seen."

"You can kinda see it the last quarter, but it's not until you get to the last, say three hundred yards, that you can actually see it proper. We're lucky that the cabin faces east, you only have the one little window in the workshop to worry about, so he shouldn't be able to see us coming. But if it's as bad as he said," the Chief remarks, indicating Coren, "We should probably bring in the ambulance with us, and all four medics." He gives a nod to the paramedics who begin making preparations, and his face goes rather sour at this whole puddle of goo business. "That's not something I wanted to know," he says, before addressing Lola, "You missy, are a little bit too eager. You might wanna calm a tad down. Take a breath, maybe. If you don't wanna be seen, keep yourself to the back with tactical officers."

The puddle of goo comment seems to make Coren look a little peaky, himself. He moves to pull Elisabeth aside to talk to her in private. "Do you really think that's going to work? We don't have a negator here, I think our best bet is to put a bullet in his head, I just don't see how we're going to get him out into a place we can pick him off, unless we can sneak around to the front of the cabin and catch him through a window." At this point, he's mostly just slowly moving into a panic, whether from inaction or fear of what he's going to find when he sees Cassidy.

Elisabeth merely nods to the chief, watches the squads load up, checks her own gear one last time, and heads for the SUV. When Coren pulls her aside, Elisabeth meets his expression with a neutral one of her own. "Frankly, Coren…. I don't think anything we do is going to work. But on the flight in, I put in a call to Quantico to the man who taught me. I laid out the entire situation to him including the Evo aspects, and he doesn't see any other way to go in except this one. Negotiating with Azrael is just flat not going to work, unless you know something I don't. He's got nothing to lose and killing her in front of you would just make him giggle a little more. The one thing I'm concerned about — and have been concerned about all along — is the idea that killing whatever body he's in at this moment may do exactly nothing. Ferrell and I hashed out every possible scenario… and I'm going to be straight with you. There isn't a single one that we could come up with that in any way remotely ended well." Her expression is sad, but she's firm on this. The only other possibility, which she does NOT mention to him, is the idea of letting him go up there alone in the hopes of luring Azrael outside — a dicey proposition at best. "If we can get into position quickly enough — and that's what these guys are trained to do — maybe you'll be able to lure him outside where your shooter can get a good bead. Maybe not. There's just no predicting him at this point, Coren. He could pop out of there and possess one of us, one of the other cops…. there are myriad possible scenarios here. It's a clusterfuck start to finish."

Lola remains with the cop in the meantime, standing over the map. "Shoot, I ain' overly eager," she drawls, frowning a bit. This man is not liked, nor cared for, nor respected at this point. They told her she was going to shoot! So where does she shoot? "If there ain' but one window how'm I supposed ta see him ta shoot him if he ain' standin' in front a that window is all I'm askin…." She's not a cop. She doesn't understand their procedure, anything like that. In her mind, she just needs a place to be to shoot.

And the chief checks his gear. Lola's remark draws from him a curious gaze. She doesn't sound like a sharpshooter on loan to him. She sounds like his granddaughter. As he's going to get everything moving, he calls out, "Shelby, your sharpshooter is wondering how she's gonna see her target." And then he gets into the SUV that's going to lead the ambulance through the forest path to the cabin.

"Fuck." It's the first word that comes to Coren's lips. It's the first bitter dose of reality that's been slapped in his face today. "Well I could have told you there's no negotiating with the son of bitch, that much has been obvious but…" That's so weird. No, he couldn't possibly have seen that. He shakes his head. "We should get going, and talk en route." He opens a door to the SUV to let Elisabeth in while peering inside at the lack of space. Tactical officers have already lined up behind the SUV and at the side of the ambulance. "Clemens," he says, looking at Lola, "You stay right behind us. I'll set you up for the kill." One way or the other. Because the idea of him running straight up to the door and knocking on it has come to him, too. Once inside the SUV, he continues talking. "I don't know how this is going to end Liz. But I love her. And I'm not going to lose her." The idea of losing his job because of the whole scenario means nothing to him.

Elisabeth shakes her head and says, "You get in. I'll ride the board." She wants and needs to be out on the running board to be able to make sure she's covering them. She all but shoves him in and holds on tight, pounding on the roof to get the driver moving. It's going to be a bumpy ride in spite of the slowness. "Actually, Clemens, take the roof of the car," she suggests. It's a place with hold bars and it's a good shot for a lay-flat sniper shot when they're still. She listens to Coren through the window, MOST of her focus on keeping the internal sounds internal while allowing herself to listen ahead. She won't be able to sharpen her own hearing enough until she gets within a quarter mile, she figures, to hear what's going on inside the cabin. "As if I didn't already know that," she comments absently in a dry tone. "If she's awake, you focus on what she's feeling. What she's doing. What she's broadcasting. I need to know as much in advance as possible if she senses us and loses it."

Love is a weird thing. Lola's not really into it. "Roof?!" She grumbles, shaking her head as she turns, hoisting herself up with ease onto the top of the SVU. "I hate you all," she grumbles, sticking her tongue out at the Chief from earlier. Hey, to Lola 'how am I going to get a shot' is a really good question! She lays the rifle underneath her so she won't have to move much - but still strapped to her - and holds onto the bars. "Fuckers." But she's ready to go.

Coren gives Liz a look through the tinted window of the SUV. "You and the whole department. Guess the— " Quite literally all of the blood rushes out of his face. "Drive…" He licks his lips, taking a deep breath in. "Drive faster," he says to the driver. If there were the room, he'd be forcing his own foot on the pedal, but he's stuck in the back feeling… no, not just feeling anymore. He unbuckles his seatbelt and clambers over the other officer in the back. Nobody's on the running board on that side when he dives out of the vehicle to vomit at the side of the forest road. As the ambulance moves past him, he waves an arm at the SUV and the paramedics and shouts at them to "GO!"

The glance Liz gives him holds sorrow. "When we get her back," she whispers to him softly, "you make sure you tell her. Everyone else knew already." Everyone but Cassidy herself, who struggled so hard with the question of why he didn't seem to feel anything. When he throws himself out of the car, Elisabeth's eyes snap forward and she calls up to Lola, "You get ready to take that fucking shot." She holds on TIGHT as the driver speeds up and she calls out to the chief, "Sir… the scene is yours, but… what do you think about ramming the cabin?" The SUV itself could potentially be a distraction. But she's leaving the tactical calls to the man in charge — she's been in enough SWAT extractions to be well-versed in their thought processes, but she's NOT a SWAT member.

Lola definatly does not want Liz to ram that cabin. Chances of her still being attached and able to take a shot may be slim to none. She doesn't have a seatbelt up here! But Lola doesn't know what's going on in Liz' brain. Instead, she presses her feet under the bars to hold her body steady while she unclips the rifle from herself, still holding it steady with her hands and her body. "Couldn' miss a freaking rock on this road, could you!" She shouts accusingly down at the driver. But she continues to get ready. The scope is prepared. Everything's ready, she just has to flip the safety off. She'll do that as soon as she can see the cabin.

"I'm not entirely sure I wanna go ramming this here SUV into that log cabin. The workshop'd be your best bet if we want to get this ve-hicle back out of here intact." The log cabin appears in the clearing as they turn the bend. "Gotta bail if that's the case." He's about to tell everyone to get out when he sees it, though. The workshop has a large wooden door on the side. It's open and with something vaguely fleshlike, visible on the door. "Binoculars." He looks through the ones handed to him. "I see a hand, Harrison, on the door o' the workshop, about two hundred yards." A signal is given and the SUV slows and moves around within the shade of the trees another fifty yards before coming to a stop. There's no ramming anything now.

"That's not part of the game." It's the first time Azrael's voice goes beyond anything but calm. It comes out almost like a snarl as he pulls Cassidy by the arm that used to house an IV needle — once upon a time. The broken detective is wrapped only in a bloody blanket, and Azrael has to drag her due to the foot she can no longer keep weight on. The blanket's only so he doesn't get dirty.

Coren follows the the ambulance after throwing up a second time. Of course, he doesn't have to see the hand to know they're coming out. His already twisted stomach gives a bit of a lurch with Azrael's sudden show of anger. As soon as he reaches the SUV, his own eyes can see the outline of the man, and he hits the side of the SUV. "Take the shot!"

Now Lola had some very nice images of this whole scenario. She was going to be on a nice quiet NYC roof with some pigeons, hanging out, maybe with someone there watching her, maybe sharing some Tostitos. The man's face would pop up in the window, she'd squeeze off a round, and that would be that.

She's on the roof of a fucking vehicle. But at least it's not moving. Lola managed to get the safety off while she was still in motion, and by the time of the stop, she's already in a good form. This is easy, for her, holding the gun up might have been annoying. But this? This isn't so bad. She can see, everything's still - oh shit there he is.

She recognizes the back of his white head, and a quick glance at the profile of his face. Of course it's him. Bloody blanket, something inside of it, a leg - oh, and the cops saying 'shoot' helps. But even that might not be enough to get Lola to take the shot. She's not a trained killer - yet.

But the glances of recognition do spark one thing - memories. Memories of the cop, of Mr. Jack, of the newspaper clipping. If this man sees you, you will die. That will propel Lola to do what she does next.

Squeeze, don't pull. Squeeze she does, and the first round goes off, and almost immediately the man's white hair is splattered and stained as the bullet tears through the back of his head, making a quarter-sized hole as it exits between his eyes - almost mathematically perfect, equidistant between two eyes. His head snaps back in response to the first hit, which Lola's eyes and hands immediately make up for. She tilts the rifle just so. Another shot off, through the apex of the cranium and exiting beneath the chin. Three. Four. Five shots in all.

Elisabeth steps down off the running board before the car is fully stopped, petrified at WHOSE hand might be on that damn door when the chief says he sees it. Oh God. … And Azrael steps out of the cabin with a bloody blanket in his hands. Even as Coren says 'take the shot,' Elisabeth drops the silence field around the group and the crackin sounds echo through the woods. By the third shot, Liz has her weapon out and ready to go even as she runs toward the mass murdering bastard, trusting Lola NOT to hit her.

To say that there's not much of a head left when the body Azrael inhabited hits the ground would be an accurate statement. The blanket Cassidy was wrapped in had the benefit of protecting her from most of the ejecta, but with Azrael no longer there to hold her up, they both crumple into a heap on the ground, the swiss-head body draped over top of hers.

When Azrael goes down, Cassidy goes down with a sharp cry of pain. But even through it all, there is still not really anything coming from her. She lays there on her side, red hair creating a thin veil across her face. As she fights to get on an elbow, her head turns slowly towards the body of Azrael draped across her hip.. She can feel the warmth spreading over the blanket she's in, but it's not registering. Confusion touches Coren and Liz, but it's a thready thing… a light touch of emotion. But then her head lowers to the ground again as if it's too heavy to hold up and she just lays there. No.. No Azrael there.

No words come from Coren's lips as he bolts for Cassidy. As soon as the first shot rings out, he's skirting around the trees, intelligently out of the way of fire, until the evil bastard's form hits the ground. Then he just plain runs. Once he's there, he throws the body off of Cassidy, gives it a very solid kick, and then he drops to his knees. The paralysis from the shock lasts only a moment as he takes up Cassidy's body in his arms, the paramedics approaching. Tears flow freely from his eyes as he holds her. Cassidy, I love you, he thinks to her, hoping for some sign that she's in there, even as he stares into her blank eyes. Then he sees the blood, and the cuts, the cauterized wounds, which have apparently been appropriately treated. But it's the new ones that worry him, including a small one at the side of her wrist, which he holds tightly in his hand — with her whole body gripped in his arms — until the paramedics reach them. As much as it kills him inside, he will relinquish them to their care, but there's no way he's riding anywhere but at her side.

She's barely steps behind Coren, but Elisabeth's goal has to be the same as the federal SWAT team who are bare steps behind HER to secure Azrael's body. Appreciation for the skill in Lola's shot will come later. Elisabeth jerks to a stop at the sight of exploded head. There are no memories of what her own looked like, obviously, but there's a moment there where the panic roars into being and she watches the federal team of tactical shooters move into position to secure the body with paranoid eyes. Any one of them COULD be taken over by Azrael, and she's looking for any sign, any tiny telltale thing that might indicate Azrael jumped bodies. It's left to her to help with the clean-up, which is a very clear struggle. "We're looking for another body," she chokes to the chief. "Jessy Delany should be here too."

Lola isn't so emotional as the rest of them. Lola doesn't know the girl wrapped in the blanket, she's never seen her, and somehow she gets the feeling that she'd be resented for going over and bothering them. So, instead, she stands up on the roof of the SUV, lifting a branch out of the way. "Is he dead?" She calls over in her thick accent. Because if he's about to get up and make everyone kill themselves, well, she'd like to be someplace that's else.

And then Cassidy is in familiar arms, and those words that slide through his head. Her eyelid's flutter a bit as she suddenly focuses on him. Again there is that touch of confusion. She couldn't be seeing…. Coren can hear her trying to rationalize what she's seeing. Then she sighs a bit and her head rests against his chest. I like this dream.

The chief can clearly see the distress on Elisabeth's face, "Harrison, you stay out here. We've got it." One of the tactical officers gives an affirmative to Lola with the caveat of 'so far as we know.' That leaves Coren with Cassidy in his arms. He kisses her forehead as he lifts her up and onto a gurney for the paramedics. There's a sniffle, and he wipes the tears away from his eyes as they go to work with her.

Lola lifts the rifle again, looking through the scope. The guy isn't moving - his white hair is either dyed or completely missing. She sits down on the edge of the car and swings herself down, holding the rifle still. Her rifle. Hers. She spies Elisabeth behaving…not quite right, and makes her way over. "You alright, sugar?"

As some of the others start prepping Cassidy for a new IV and heart monitor, one of the paramedics move to start strapping her to the gurney, standard procedures after all. Can't have her accidentally falling off in transit to the hospital. The minute the man touches her legs and pulls that strap across her blanket-wrapped feet, Cassidy's head snaps around to stare at the man and her terror washes over Coren and Liz… It's like a sudden crushing tidal wave of emotions for Coren. "No.. nonono…" Cassidy starts trying to tug her feet from under the strap making the paramedic have to grab them, which makes the redheaded woman start to panic. Her legs kick at him and she tries to back away across the gurney. "No.. Nonono..No!" Each time she says the words it's louder and laces with growing panic and tears.

The paramedics, fearing she'll hurt herself or fall off the gurney, start to try and hold her down, one at her shoulders, the other at her feet, this only makes things worse. "No.. Coren!" She glances at the paramedics eyes wide with her fear, she continues to fight them, she starts sobbing… then she starts to beg, her voice high pitched and full of pure panic "No.. I was good.. Please.. Please, I was good… Don't strap me down. I was a good girl!"

Coren's been shot before, nearly abducted, beaten, chased. He's never been tortured though, and he's never felt fear quite like what washes over him — through him. Combined with his own jumble of emotions and the stronger, logical side of him functioning, he knows what's happening. That cripples him even more because he knows it's Cassidy's fear. She's feeling this, and there's nothing he can do. All he can do to keep sane — if that's even possible at this point — is grab Cassidy's hand and rest a hand on her face. He'll hold her down himself if necessary if he can keep breathing. Right, breathe. Slowly. Cassidy, I'm right here. Stay with me.

Elisabeth feels the panic attack from Cassidy wash over her, and it's an epic struggle to keep it from turning into her own. She nods to the chief when he says they've got it, giving him a grateful look. Her jaw clenches and she walks with Lola, remaining near the other woman as they move. "Just brings up… some bad stuff." She murmurs in a low voice, pitching it directly to the lead paramedic and containing it to him so that Cassidy (and Coren) can't hear her, "Sedate her. You're not going to be able to transport her until she's all the way under — she won't be able to bear being strapped down. Make sure when you get to the hospital, you tell them not to strap her." She leaves Coren to ride in the ambulance with Cassidy and remains on the scene with the feds for as long as it takes to secure it and start getting pictures. It's her case — hers, Coren's, and Cassidy's — but it's their jurisdiction, and Elisabeth is really good with the cooperation on this and not getting in their way while they process the scene, giving the chief all the answers she can about the situation.

When it's as tied up as it's going to get, Elisabeth looks at the chief and says quietly, "I need to contact New York and let them know he's dealt with, that Delany and O'Shea have been recovered. Can one of your guys give us a ride to the hospital?" Shaking the man's hand, she smiles wearily at him. "I'll make sure your team gets all due credit for this, but we'd like to announce it ourselves, if you don't mind terribly. Shelby's been chasing him for a decade." It's the least Coren deserves given that his career may be shot in the butt.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License