You know the drill
Horatio watched helplessly as his daughters were dragged from the back of the van into the warehouse. Beside him Eric gasped.
Horatio shook his head.
“No. The girls are no use to them dead. Not yet anyway.”
Eric caught Becki’s eye as she and V were brought over to join them. The signal was clear. Get the hell out of here.
He gave a small nod, then he, Nick and Horatio watched as the pair were forced to their knees in front of them.
The gags were removed, but instantly replaced with a clammy hand. A large serrated blade was drawn swiftly in front of each girl’s terrified eyes.
What it came down to. They were in an ultimatum. No one was coming. The end of the line.
The leader, Cameron, came to stand in front of Horatio. He bent his face close to the ex-Lieutenant.
“So Mr Caine. What will it be? Will you give me the information, or do I let my men start their work?”
Horatio shook his head.
“No. And you won’t touch my daughter’s either, or it will be the last thing you ever do.”
“Oh really? And how do you plan to stop me Caine?”
He kicked Horatio in the ribs, causing him to double up. He laughed.
Ignoring Horatio’s groans, he turned on Eric.
“How about you then? Will you persuade the old man, or do I start removing your little girlfriend’s fingers?”
Eric opened his mouth, then a thought struck him. Could he buy them some time?
He trailed off, leaving the words hanging, hoping they would take the right-
“Really? She’s not?”
Eric nodded fervently, the lie tumbling out.
“We broke up. Did your men not see it?”
Cam frowned, then a smile lit his face.
“So she means nothing to you? You don’t mind if I just...?”
He raised a finger and the man behind Becki pulled the rope from her wrists, splaying one hand on the hard concrete floor. Her muffled screams of terror were all it took.
“Well, not nothing as such.”
Eric spoke too quickly, keep one eye on the blade as it got closer to her fingers. Cam smiled again, his arm dropping to his side. The knife was retracted and her hands swiftly retied. She shot Eric a look that was half grateful, half disappointed. Cam laughed.
“Nice try kid.”
Eric hung his head and the men laughed.
“Are you going to try and help us? Last chance.”
Eric shook his head, hating himself. Cam smiled, waving his hand.
“I’m done with that one. We’ll make him talk. Get rid of her.”
Two more men appeared and the three of them pulled Becki to her feet. Her muffled screams were drowned as she was half dragged into a small room off the main area. For a minute or so there was silence.
And then the screaming started.
It was the longest few minutes of all of their lives. The screaming didn’t go on for long. It was quickly replaced with pleading, her voice begging for them to stop, for Eric to talk to her father, for her father to give up.
Horatio’s head also hung low, tears coursing down his cheeks as he heard his youngest daughter begging for her life. V’s cheeks were also wet, and she was struggling fiercely with her captor in the hope of reaching her sister. But all in vain.
After almost half an hour the pleading were replaced with sobbing, and finally. Silence.
The three men filed out of the room, one of them wiping blood off his hands with a scrap of cloth. Eric craned his neck to try and see into the room, but the door was quickly pulled closed.
One of the men whispered something to Cam, who nodded. He then turned back to Eric.
“You willing to help us out now? Your girl’s dead, do you want to be the next to die for the old man? Do you want to die like your whore did, ignorant and in pain?”
His words cut Eric like a knife and he struggled to pull himself free of his bonds. He was cruelly laughed down, and eventually subsided.
A sudden clatter broke the laughter as V aimed a wild kick at the man holding her back. He just laughed, pushing her roughly to the floor. But she managed to catch Eric’s eye. They were wide, not with terror, but knowledge. And then Eric knew. They might be able to trick him, they could trick Nick, even Horatio. But not V. They could take her away from them, but V could still reach her sister.
She was alive. And she was ok. Not great, but she was ok. That was all he needed.
The laughter finally subsided and Cam turned his attention to Nick. Eric seized his chance, hissing to Horatio.
“Stall. She’s ok.”
His words seemed to lift Horatio. He straightened up, calling out to Cameron.
“Leave them alone. I’ll talk.”
V tried to shout to him, tell him to stay quiet, but she was quickly silenced. Cam turned to Horatio with interest.
“So. We were right. The weakness of the great Horatio Caine. You’ve got one daughter left Caine. One kid, one chance. Don’t mess this up.”
He nodded to Eric.
“This clod lost you your youngest Caine. Will you risk her sister?”
Horatio shook his head. All the men seemed to relax, settling back. The one holding V retied her gag, anticipating trouble, then secured her to a ring in the wall beside Nick. Nick pulled her into his arms, whispering frantically in her ear. Her eyes grew very wide.
Cam gave Horatio a toothy smile.
“So come on Caine. Spill.” He crossed his arms ready.
And it was right then when the rest of the team burst in through the door.
Authors Notes: Note to self. Do not place self in imminent danger. Does not do good things for ego. Now, where was I?