“Just like home.” Kennedy watched Xander tie Harrison securely to a chair in the middle of their cabin.
Faith looked up at Kennedy questioningly.
“Hardly a week seems to go by,” Explained Kennedy, “Without us having to tie some guy to a chair.”
“Real waste,” Faith stretched languidly. “You being gay an’all.”
“Oh yeah,” Kennedy nodded her head resignedly; “I see what you mean.”
“You do this a lot then?” Harrison fidgeted as Xander tested the knots.
“‘Fraid so,” Kennedy confirmed, just as Willow came into the room from the bathroom.
“So who wants first crack at him?” Willow wiped her hands on a towel as she advanced on the by now worried Harrison, he had seen Faith pull a long sharp looking knife from her boot.
“Hey! Hey!” Harrison tried to move his chair away from Willow, “I’ll talk! No need for anyone to take a crack at anything!”
“Crap!” Faith put her knife away.
“Darn!” Willow agreed, “I’ll never get to use the Fire Ants…they’re not cheap you know?”
Xander gave his oldest friend a very worried look before turning back to Harrison.
“Okay,” Xander invited, “Sing!”
Tru walked into the main cabin, no one was at the reception desk, as she looked around the door opened and closed behind her. She turned to see Kevin standing by the door, she took an involuntary step backwards.
“What are you doing here?” Kevin demanded angrily crossing the floor towards her.
“Look,” Tru took another pace away from Kevin, “I was feeling guilty about what happened yesterday, and I wanted to apologise.”
“You tried to get me arrested,” Kevin put his hand in his pocket and felt the cold hard hilt of his best knife, “Saying sorry is not going to cut it.”
‘But I’ll cut you’, he thought as he watched the young woman try to back away from him. He would enjoy doing this one, Kevin smiled malevolently as he imagined cutting up the dark haired girl in front of him; he would take his time over this one.
“Yeah,” Tru came up against the edge of the reception deck, “I know it’s hard to believe, but I was trying to protect you!”
“From what?” Kevin was suddenly very interested in what the woman was saying, what would he need to be protected from?
“Tru?” Luc came in through the door and walked across the room to stand by Tru’s side, “Is everything okay?” Luc gave Kevin a warning look.
“Yeah, sure,” Tru looked up at her boyfriend and started to steer him towards the door, “Everything’s fine.”
“What’s goin’ on Tru?” Luc wanted to know as they got outside and closed the door behind them.
“It’s nothing,” Tru lied, “Just a misunderstanding from yesterday, it’s too hard to explain right now, y’know?” Tru started to head across the parking lot towards their cabin.
Luc ran to catch up with her and grabbed hold of her arm twisting her around to face him.
“You’re always saying that, Tru,” Luc dropped his hand from her arm, he furrowed his brow in anger, “You never have time to explain…”
“TRU!” Tru turned in relief to see Lindsay running towards her, “Have you guys seen Harrison?”
“So your sister’s a witch?” Willow asked from where she sat on the edge of the bed with her arm around Kennedy’s ample waist, “And she casts a spell to relive days and catch murderers and such?”
“A what?” Harrison was still tied to the chair, he had been really relieved when all these kooks had believed his story about Tru reliving days; relieved and just a little weirded out!
“No I don’t think that’s it.” Xander leant against the cabin wall, “I think this is something different.” He turned his attention back to Harrison, “Does your sister have any control over this?”
“Nope,” Harrison shifted in his bonds, “Hey you guys, could you see your way clear to letting me go?”
“Do you think we can trust him?” Faith sat in an arm chair in the corner of the room, “If you want my opinion his story is a little too slick, just weird enough, and believable enough to suck us all in.”
“Hey look,” Cried Harrison, “I know what you mean, when Tru first told me I thought she was insane!”
“And how come your big sister is my double, dude?” Demanded Faith standing up and walking over to where Harrison looked at her puzzled.
“I don’t normally look like this.” Faith impatiently kicked the leg of Harrison’s chair.
“How do you normally look?” Harrison flinched.
“Like your sis, better rack, dark hair, taller.” Faith moved her hand two inches above her head in demonstration, “You deaf or deficient?”
Just then there was a knock on the door.
“STOP!” Buffy yelled as the tractor bounced along the rough track, the lights of the following police car reflecting off the cab’s windows.
“But we’re getting away!” Tammy fought with the steering wheel as the front wheels hit the ruts in the track.
Buffy glanced back at the police cruiser behind them, Tammy was right they were slowly drawing away from their pursuer. Not surprising really as the police car was not designed to drive along rough tracks at the break-neck speed of twenty miles an hour!
“No Tammy,” Buffy ordered, “We better stop, they’ll only catch us on the road.”
Reluctantly Tammy brought the tractor to a halt and switched the engine off. The patrol car came to a halt about twenty yards behind them, the deputy climbed from his car and pulled his gun.
“Okay!” He called aiming his pistol at the tractor’s cab, “Climb down out o’ there and put your hands up.”
Buffy and Tammy did as they were told and stood by the tractor with their hands above their heads. The officer relaxed a little when he saw he was only facing a couple of young women and not the desperate tractor thieves that Bert Harper claimed had stolen his new tractor. He walked up to the girls.
“Would one of you mind explaining what the hell’s goin’ on here?” He never saw Tammy move.
His eyes had been on Buffy, Tammy moved so fast that it did not register until it was too late and the blackness closed in around him.
“That was a great idea, Ma’am,” Tammy grinned as she dragged the Deputy over to the tractor and propped him against one of the big rear wheels. “Of course they’ll catch us on the road! We need something faster!”
Buffy’s mouth opened and closed as she tried to form words that adequately expressed how bad she thought this was. She made not a sound as her vocabulary failed her. Tammy handcuffed the deputy sheriff to the tractor and threw away the key, next she climbed up into the cab to collect her and Buffy’s bags.
“Come on,” Tammy cried as she jumped down onto the track again, “Let’s go!” She headed towards the police car.
“But…!” Buffy pointed to the deputy sheriff, “We can’t just leave him there!”
Tammy paused half way into the cruiser’s driving seat.
“You’re right,” Tammy settled herself into the seat and studied the patrol car’s controls, “We’ll call from the nearest phone box an’ tell his friends where we left him.” She started the engine and looked up at Buffy. “You coming?”
Reluctantly Buffy ran over to the police car and got in next to Tammy.
“Strap in,” Suggested Tammy, “This’ll be a bit bumpy at first.”
The car shot off backwards down the track, Tammy let out what sounded like a Red Indian warcry as she spun the car back onto the main road. She put the car into forward gear as her foot mashed down on the accelerator. Buffy was forced back into her seat as the car accelerated along the road. She so hoped this would all end up better than ‘Thelma and Louise’.
“If we’re gonna tie up any more people,” Faith finished tying the last knot that held the blonde woman to the chair, “One of us should go out and get some more rope.”
“What the hell’s going on, Harrison?” The young woman strangely seemed to be more annoyed with Harrison than the maniacs who had kidnapped her and tied her up, “Are these more of your gambling buddies?”
“It’s alright honey,” Harrison tried to placate his girlfriend; he had to do that a lot, “There’s just been a bit of a mix up.”
“MIX UP!” Screamed Lindsay, “When I get out of here I’m NEVER going to speak to you again…we’re th…”
There was a sound like tickling little bells and fairy dust sparkles fell from Willow’s fingers as she gestured at Lindsay. Silence fell in the room as Lindsay yelled silently at her soon to be ex-boyfriend.
“Hey?” Harrison wriggled with excitement and turned to Willow, “You ever thought about marketing that trick?”
Luc had suddenly found himself standing in the middle of the motel’s parking lot. Tru had run off with Lindsay to find Harrison, so once again he found himself alone wondering what the hell was going on. He walked towards his jeep, his head hung dejectedly from his shoulders. It was sad but he was going to have to break up with Tru, he could not cope with all the mystery anymore.
The way Tru ran off without any explanation, the weird things she did and said. Her complete unwillingness to explain what was going on. It must be something to do with her brother, he thought as he reached his jeep. His hand reached out to open the door and his eyes automatically swept over the vehicle to see if all was well. It was only then that he noticed that both tyres on the driver’s side had been slashed.
“Damn it!” Luc hissed under his breath as he searched for his cell.
Flipping the phone open he saw there was still no signal. He started to walk towards the main cabin wondering what loser could have done such a thing. It was only then that he noticed that all the other vehicles in the parking lot had their tyres slashed. Luc increased his speed and almost ran up the steps to the reception. Opening the door the smell hit him; a smell like sewers and iron.
Cautiously he made his way across the room to the reception desk, he lifted the receiver of the phone he found there and put it to his ear, it was silent. Quietly he put the phone down and looked around, everything was still and quiet only the smell jarred with the picture of normality that surrounded him. He felt an urgent need to find Tru, something bad was happening.
Luc walked over to the entrance to the restaurant and looked into the deserted room, he expected to hear sounds coming from the kitchens it was nearly time for them to open for the midday meal. Instead of the hustle and bustle of a busy kitchen silence reached his ears. It was only when he turned back to go out through reception that he noticed the foot sticking out from behind the reception desk. Luc rushed over to see what was wrong.
“Oh my god!” He covered his mouth and nose with his hand.
Kennedy sat on the edge of the bed and watched in fascination as Lindsay’s mouth opened and closed. It did not seem to matter that no one could hear; she just carried on tearing her boyfriend a new asshole.
“Wow!” Kennedy studied Lindsay’s lips, “Do you kiss your mother with that mouth?”
“I didn’t know you could lip read, sweetie.” Willow sat down next to Kennedy.
“A bit,” Kennedy pulled her eyes away from Lindsay and regarded Willow, “I can get about one word in three, I learnt it at school.”
“Oh that’s so cool,” Willow gushed, “More schools should teach Sign Language and lip reading, it would be so useful with deaf people as opposed to blind people or the physically disabled.”
“Sorry to rain on your parade, Will,” Kennedy slipped her arm around Willow and rested her head against hers, “They taught us to lip read so we’d be able to tell if people were talking about us from across a noisy room.” She gave Willow an apologetic look, “It was that sort of school.”
“So what do we do now?” Xander wanted to know.
“I’m for gettin’ outta here fast!” Faith voted from the depths of her chair.
“What about Kevin?” Willow wanted to know, “We can’t just leave him to be murdered…an’ then there’s the Faith-a-like we can’t let her wander the country pretending to be Faith.”
“I’m with Faith on this,” Xander stood up and started to pace the floor, “We’re here to ensure Kennedy’s welfare, any danger to her trumps all other considerations. I vote we leave.”
“I know I’m biased,” Kennedy rested her chin on her hand, “But I want to go home…I really didn’t want to come anyway.”
“We just need you to make it unanimous, Will.” Xander raised an eyebrow at Willow.
“I don’t know…” Willow began uncertainly, “It doesn’t feel right to run out like this…” She turned to look at Kennedy, “But if you all think Ken’s in danger then I guess we better start running.”
“Okay!” Xander stopped pacing, an annoying habit he had picked up from Giles, “Faith, you stay here and help Willow defend Kennedy…I’ll go get the cars ready.” Willow passed him her car keys. “Right,” He gave everybody a lopsided grin, “If I’m not back in ten minutes or you hear me screaming like a girl come rescue me!”
Bravely Xander stepped out into the pale winter midday light.
Tammy fishtailed the police car around the corner sending gravel flying in all directions. Buffy had stopped trying to get her to stop or even slow down, she glanced over her shoulder at the three police cars following them, whatever Willow and Kennedy had been doing at that house of theirs it certainly instilled loyalty in their girls. The Seattle Slayer drove with a single minded determination that frightened even Buffy, nothing seemed to matter to Tammy other than getting to her friends whatever the cost. Time to get with the program Buffy told herself.
“We need to slow them down a bit!” Buffy called over the noise of the sirens that blared from both the chasing and their own car, Tammy nodded her head in agreement. Buffy looked into the back of the car, nothing, turning to face the front again her eye fell on the riot gun clipped to the dash board; maybe she could shoot out a tyre or something? Grabbing hold of the gun she turned to Tammy and explained what she was going to do.
“Ma’am? Look I’m good but I’m not that good, I’m not going to lose these guys.” Tammy jerked her head in the direction of the following Police. “Eventually they’ll get in front of us and we’ll have to stop, then…” She did not finish her sentence Buffy knew what would happen once they stopped.
“Look,” Tammy swerved around a truck parked at the side of the road, “When I give you the signal shoot out the tyre of the first car, then I’ll break and you roll out. I’ll lead them away from you an’ you go for it across country, it can’t be far now.”
Buffy nodded her head in agreement and climbed into the back of the car where she would be able to get a better shot at the following police cars.
Tammy glanced into her rear view mirror and smiled, the police chasing her seemed to be right on top of her. Looking out of the windscreen she saw the right hand bend coming towards her, just what she wanted. She looked in her mirror again, the police were still there, this would take careful timing if Ms Summers were to get away.
“NOW!” Tammy shouted to Buffy.
The two blasts from the riot gun nearly deafened her, the rear window shattered and then she could hear the shrieking of brakes and the sound of metal and glass being torn and smashed as the first police car collided with the curb and spun onto its roof. Tammy started to decelerate as she went into the corner. It would take a minute maybe two for the other police cars to get around the roadblock formed by the first car.
By now Tammy had brought the car down to a speed were Buffy would be able to jump.
“GO!” Tammy called.
The rear door flew open as Buffy leapt from the car and rolled in the ditch. Tammy cast a quick look over her shoulder and floored the accelerator again. The rear door slammed shut as she shot off down the road the two remaining police cars still in hot pursuit.
“Good luck Tammy!” Buffy yelled as she jumped from the back of the police cruiser.
She hit the road hard and bounced onto the grassy verge and rolled into the road side ditch where she came to a halt. She kept her head down as the police cars screamed off after Tammy leaving a cloud of mud and dead leaves in their wake. Cautiously Buffy raised her head and looked over the edge of the ditch. On her side of the road lay an open field with woods on the far side. The opposite side of the road had great dark pine trees hard on the shoulder of the road.
Carefully Buffy stood up and did a quick inventory of her injuries, there was a nasty cut on her left knee, the blood soaking into her torn jeans. There were cuts and scraps on her hands and face and her jacket was ripped on her forearms, thank god for leather jackets, she sighed as she started to limp towards the trees.
Hobbling across the road Buffy plunged into the darkness of the woods, the Motel where Willow and Kennedy were staying was about two miles through the woods. She could make it in an hour, she hoped she would be in time. In the distance she could still hear the police sirens as Tammy led their pursuers further and further away.