Continued from where the last one left off!
Have a good one.
His back hit a brick wall. Hard. There was a flash of discomfort, more annoying than painful, as his backpack took most of the shock. He ignored it to jump forward, automatically on the offense. Sarah Walker, however, appeared to have learned a thing or two from their encounter in the alley in Spain. Even as he lunged forward, she slipped sideways, still moving on the momentum of hauling him out of plain sight. He made a grab, and met empty air.
Frak, the woman was fast.
Swearing, he whirled—and hit the floor to duck the fist. He rolled once, heard the same heeled boot as before hit the ground, and a female grunt. He sprang to his feet and leapt as far out of Sarah’s reach as he could, snatching the gun free as he did so. His landing was a bit of a stumble, but that hardly mattered. He had a weapon now.
So did Sarah, it appeared. Chuck turned, gun up, and she had that same nickel-plated S & W pointed right at him.
The smartass “I feel like we’ve been here before” comment died on his tongue. Instead, his mind stuttered and went completely blank. “What aren't you wearing?” he managed to say. “Are you—what are—”
“Shut up,” Sarah said, scowling harder. “I needed to blend in.”
He couldn’t help but marvel. Sarah’s dress was...well, the only word that came to mind was brief. Very, very brief. It cut low, baring her shoulders, and only covered enough of her legs to keep her from getting arrested. In some states. But what really wasn’t helping his blood pressure were the knee-high glossy black boots that she’d paired with the outfit. It appeared her legs really were endless. “Where? At the Playboy Mansion?”
“You’re under arrest,” Sarah said. “And quit staring.”
Chuck belatedly remembered that he was holding his gun, and raised it a little bit. “I feel like we’ve been here before,” he finally managed to say. Only you were wearing a lot more clothing last time. Pity. “You’re not going to arrest me this time, either.”
“Gonna run away again? You’re not going to get far if you keep tripping over your tongue.”
“I—” Chuck couldn’t think of a single thing to say to that, so he colored and shifted his grip on his gun. Then he narrowed his eyes. “Wait a second. Are you—your brilliant disguise is a hooker?”
“What? It’s better than yours. Most mechanics don’t carry a Swiss Gear bag.” Sarah nodded at Chuck’s bag, still hanging from his shoulder by a single strap. They continued to circle each other warily, never getting too close. “What are you doing here?”
“Maybe I’m from Boston and I was just enjoying a stroll.”
“Accent says otherwise.”
“I don’t know what you mean by that,” Chuck said in a Boston accent.
One of Sarah’s eyebrows arched. Combined with the gun, the boots, the hooker dress...his blood pressure was already through the roof as it was. He nearly groaned. This was like delicious torture. Maybe it was time to deflect, or something. “What are you doing here?”
“Your accent is horrible.”
“Is not. I worked on it for twenty whole minutes last night.”
“Gee.” Sarah rolled her eyes—and struck. She hadn’t telegraphed the move at all, so only reflex saved Chuck’s chin from having a close and personal encounter with the heel of a hooker boot. He bowed backwards, arms spread for balance, and watched with some sort of odd distance as Sarah’s boot swung within an inch of his face.
Reality snapped back into place. The force of Sarah’s kick spun her in a full circle. She followed it with a right cross that this time was telegraphed.
On purpose, Chuck found out. He swept right to duck the cross, and couldn’t halt his motion fast enough to avoid the knee to the chest. God, the woman had bony knees. His chest exploded; he hit the pavement again, landing painfully on his backpack.
“I really thought you’d be harder to take down,” Sarah said.
Chuck spun on his elbow and swept her feet out from under her. “Same goes, sweetheart,” he said, and lunged to his feet, already sprinting. He heard an annoyed oath and then the click of Sarah’s boots on the pavement behind him. He could only hope she wasn’t a crack shot on the run.
The alley she’d yanked him into wasn’t a dead end, thankfully. Chuck raced by dumpsters, overflowing with loose trash and trash bags alike, and skidded a bit as he hit the end of the alley and cut a hard right. Behind him, the click of boots never slowed.
How the hell did she run in those?
And what was she even doing there? The CIA wasn’t supposed to be meddling in Intersect affairs. All of his research told him that this was strictly NSA jurisdiction, and that Major John Casey wasn’t the type to share and share alike. In fact, Chuck had “eavesdropped” on several emails between Casey and the same agent chasing him even now, and there had been blatant dislike between the lines of text. There was absolutely no way they could be working together, he knew.
So why was Sarah chasing him and not Casey? It didn’t make any sense.
Chuck made a turn and nearly swore as the slant of the road cut down, heading straight for the water. He really wasn’t having much luck today. He ran by parked cars that looked like they’d seen better decades, brick walls that were living works of graffiti art, and characters that looked like they might fit in well on The Wire. If they were at all surprised by a hooker chasing a mechanic, the surprise didn’t register on their faces as Chuck blew past.
It probably wasn’t that unusual, now that he thought about it, a john trying to skip out on his fare. The thought made him grin as he changed course yet again, heading into the steel girders and underbelly of the docks.