Life is like a game of cards. The
hand you are dealt is determinism; the way you play it is free
He was nodding off at his desk and
everyone else had left for the night. His desk lamp was all that
illuminated the room and revealed out of the darkness surrounding
him, a mass of papers and files, piling up on the desk. He jolted
awake as his training senses set in. He looked around the room
for any sign of life. It was silent. Anyone else would be calmed
by this fact, but not him. It made him nervous. As he stood up,
he pulled his Glock 19 from his desk drawer and headed towards
the window to check the parking lot for cars. Nothing. This made
him even more nervous. The sound of papers rustling behind him
made him spin around, gun raised. He was calm as he aimed at the
intruder. The secretary was not so calm. She shrieked and fell to
"Jesus Christ! It's me! Lia! I'm
just the secretary!"
He looked quizically at her, still
not lowering his weapon,
"I've never seen you here before.
Why are you here this late?" He said with his gruff English
accent. His voice weathered by years of cheap cigarettes and
Their conversation was cut
"Drop the gun!"
The man turned towards the doorway
to see the building security guard.
"Special Agent Warren", the man
said, lowering his weapon.
The secretary stood up, and
scurried away, leaving the security guard and the Interpol agent
"Ben, what the hell is wrong with
you?" The guard asked.
"I'm sorry John. It's
John looked over at the Agents desk
and shook his head.
"Ben, you've gotta stop worrying
about that case. Go home and sleep." He said, even though he knew
his advice would be ignored.
"I will. Let me just gather my
things." Ben said.
He knew he wouldn't be able to
sleep. He hadn't been able to since the abduction and he didn't
understand how anyone on his team could sleep.
"Don't lie to me Ben." His stocky
black friend said. He was tall, a giant to some. He was a former
Marine who had done two tours in the Middle East as well as some
"Non-Official" Operations overseas. He was honorably discharged
from the Marines and quickly got bored with civilian life. He
joined Interpol as Chief of Security of their London field
office, and from this, a friendship with Special Agent Ben Warren
The guard lumbered over to one of
the agent's desk.
"This is Agent Mulherins right?" He
Ben looked over and nodded,
"Knew it." He said as he reached
down and opened the bottom drawer. Ben heard the clanging of
glasses and John popped up from underneath the desk with a bottle
of alcohol and two glasses. He had a massive grin on his face.
His thick moustache looked like it was going to touch each of his
John walked over to his friend and
after pulling up a chair, he poured them a drink.
Ben took his without any argument
and he downed it instantly without thinking. He choked after he
swallowed and looked at his friend,
"What was that?" He said, with a
disgusted look on his face.
"How should I know? It's Mulherins
After his drink, Ben was fully
awake, at least he felt like it.
He shuffled what was left in his
glass in silence.
"You look like crap man. Why don't
you just sleep this one off?" John said.
The agent looked up, misery written
all over his face, and said,
"That little kid is out there. How
can anyone sleep when he isn't safe in his bed?" Ben shook his
His friend looked at him
"Life goes on Ben. Nobody wants to
give up just yet, but they can't work with a tired mind. If they
are over-tired and overlook something critical, they aren't
useful to this case. This team needs rest in order to find this
girl. That means you Ben. You're barely running on fumes."
Ben set down the empty glass on the
desk and stood up. He walked over to his unkempt desk and cleaned
up the files.
"I've got some sleeping pills at
Ben knew that no amount of alcohol
or sleeping pills would get him to sleep that night. He put his
Glock on safe and stashed it in his desk drawer.
"Goodnight John." He said as he
walked out of the room, leaving his friend to finish his drink