Brothers in Arms

A Haven fanfic

By Jeannine Trevizo

 

Chapter 3

 

-x-

 

Nathan and Duke strode through the doors of the Good Sheppard Church expecting anything. All Nathan really wanted to do was search the place, maybe if they had to ask a few discrete questions; nothing that would let whoever had Audrey know that they were on their trail.

 

Walking through the church, Nathan focused on anywhere they could have stashed her. His mind thought of basements and closets and underground cellars, trying to recall every location on the grounds of the church that Audrey could be being held.

 

Pointing towards the Rev’s office, Nathan headed back to the space where he had confronted Reverend Driscoll more than once. If there was any evidence that the Rev’s people could have been responsible in kidnapping Audrey, he hoped to find it there. And if he was really lucky, they’d find her there too.

 

Duke looked around the space, remembering the last time he’d searched the place, but this time things were different. He wasn’t looking for a list this time; he was looking for something that would lead them to Audrey.

 

He just hoped that she’d be alive when they found her.

 

Duke didn’t even want to consider that thought, but he was a realist. If she was as much of a threat as Driscoll and his father thought she was, someone might have decided not to wait for him to do it and taken the initiative to kill her. Of course, even if he might consider that could be at all a possibility, he was a smart enough man to know that even suggesting the idea to Nathan was tantamount to walking into a lion’s cage wrapped in red meat. So he said nothing and kept searching, hoping that they would locate anything that could help them find Audrey.

 

Coming up with nothing in the church Nathan turned and stalked towards the back of the church and yanked open the door that headed to the auxiliary building, recalling more than once instance of being there hunting for answers that had only led to dead people and heartache. He desperately prayed that it wasn’t going to happen again because he didn’t know what he’d do if they found Audrey, only to find her…

 

Shaking his head to force the morbid thoughts from his mind he moved to the next building. Pulling on the door he found it locked, and Nathan gave Duke a look that told him that his not so above board skills were being called into use. Sighing Duke fished out a credit card from his wallet and proceeded to try and jimmy the lock along the door jam. After a few minutes of maneuvering the handle suddenly turned and Duke was able to swing the door open.

 

Nathan gave Duke a half smirk before he slowly entered the building. The last thing they needed was to get shot at for breaking and entering.

 

Finding the coast clear Nathan waved Duke in behind him and they started searching the space. As they moved from room to room, Nathan felt more and more anxious. They’d yet to find any trace of Audrey and he was becoming concerned that he’d made a mistake… What if it had been someone else, someone not affiliated with the Rev that had taken her and his immediate reaction to look for her here was only costing him more time in his search?

 

His mind preoccupied with his fears for Audrey’s safety, Nathan was brought up short when he was confronted with someone on the opposite side of the door to one of the back rooms as he opened it. His hand almost reflexively went for his gun but he stopped himself, knowing he was on the property illegally and him flashing his gun and badge wasn’t how he wanted to start what could be a perfectly reasonable discussion…

 

“What are you doing here?” a middle aged guy aggressively asked, a suspicious look in his eyes as he took in both men where they stood in the auxiliary building of the church.

 

“Conducting an investigation. We’re checking the grounds…” Nathan said with as much authority as he could muster, under the circumstances.

 

“For what?”

 

“Rats,” threw in Duke quickly, causing the man before them to glare at them.

 

The guy was a local, Nathan could tell, but the man’s name escaped him. But the way he was looking at him and Duke he knew without question that he was definitely a follower of the Rev’s and more than likely part of the band of zealots that had decided to start taking matters with the troubled into their own hands.

 

“You’re a traitor and you’re a freak,” the man spat finally, his eyes looking from Duke and then landing on Nathan. “You should leave, now…”

 

Nathan jerked at the insult and swiftly took three long strides to tower over the shorter man in front of him. It took all his self control to keep from grabbing him by his collar, shoving him against the nearest wall and demanding he tell him where Audrey was.

 

“Look, if you want to interfere with an official investigation,” he said darkly, making the man before him shake slightly nervously, “you can do that and I can take you down to the station for obstruction and let you sit overnight in a cell. Or you can get out of my way…”

 

The man cowered and then slowly stepped aside when he saw Nathan lay the heel of his hand on his service weapon, the threat obvious in the movement.

 

Once he realized the man wasn’t going to cause any more problems, Nathan and Duke continued to search the warehouse, sweeping through the space quickly yet thoroughly and then moved on to the storm cellar and the basement. After looking at every cubby space, closet and cellar on the property Duke and Nathan came away with no clues, no Audrey and nothing to tie Driscoll’s people with Audrey’s disappearance.

 

Discouraged that his primary suspects didn’t look to have taken Audrey, Nathan swore under his breath and hurried out of the last building and headed for the Bronco causing Duke to rush to catch up to the determined man before him.

 

“Now what?” asked Duke as he quickened his pace.

 

“We’ll go back to Audrey’s place. There has to be something there that will give me something to go on. I didn’t even look before…” Nathan remarked, his mind frantically trying to come up with someone else with a motive to abduct Audrey.

 

With that Nathan got into the vehicle leaving Duke to scramble to get into the truck. As soon as Duke was in the vehicle Nathan had the engine running and was pulling away from the curb. Driving back to the Gull Duke found himself wondering how long Audrey had been missing and how far behind the kidnappers that put them.

 

“So when do you think they grabbed her?” questioned Duke, trying to figure out what they were working against.

 

Nathan turned to regard him and frowned. She’d been gone when he’d arrived, on time for their dinner date. But he had no idea when between her leaving him earlier in the day and when he’d arrived for dinner she’d been taken. Of course, if he hadn’t been out of his mind with worry for her he would have better assessed the scene and figured out how long she’d been gone. He mentally kicked himself for being so stupid as to have not paused for even a moment to truly appraise the scene rather than just blindly take the obvious lead he’d been given and gone storming off to confront Duke.

 

“Not sure. When I got there she was gone and I didn’t look…”

 

“Why were you there anyway?”

 

Nathan didn’t say anything and instead drug his left hand through his hair, bringing Duke’s attention to the clean expanse of Nathan’s forearm. He was sure he’d seen that damn tattoo there when they’d been on the boat. Where it had gone, he had no idea. As he stared he recalled again the shock he’d felt when he’d seen it thinking that he was done for. Now though… well he still had no idea what the hell was going on, and he hated it.

 

Nathan caught Duke staring at him, the look in his eyes almost… fearful and snapped at him, “What?”

 

“I… it was there…” Duke said finally, nodding at the arm Nathan was now pulling down to grasp the steering wheel once again. “I swear to God I saw it…”

 

“What was?”

 

“The tattoo.”

 

Nathan looked at him blankly for a moment before he looked back at the road and made a right turn, taking the quickest route to the Gull by heading through the downtown.

 

“The labyrinth tattoo. You know, the one on the person that’s supposed to kill me,” Duke replied, frustrated once again at Nathan’s dismissive attitude towards the tattooed man who he’d been told was going to kill him.

 

Nathan knew about the damn tattoo; every time Duke had tried to get Nathan to help him figure out who the man was with the symbol that was going to kill him, something else more important came up. Now having thought he’d seen it on Nathan he didn’t know what to think…

 

Duke squeezed his eyes closed for a second, wondering for what felt like the hundredth time if he’s just imagined it under the train of the moment…

 

“You saw it where?” Nathan asked, confused and a bit concerned; first Audrey was kidnapped and now Duke’s was talking about the man meant to kill him…

 

“On the inside of your lower left arm when you were threatening to shoot me.”

 

Nathan slammed on the brakes hard, bringing the truck to a jarring halt in the middle of the road. Duke raised an arm to brace against the front dash at the sudden stop and then he saw Nathan staring at him, stunned.

 

“What?” Nathan questioned quietly as he processed what Duke was saying. His eyes bored into Duke, trying to gauge whether the con man was trying to play him or was lying, but all he saw was trepidation and confusion. “You saw the tattoo on me?”

 

“Yeah. Freaked me out. I really thought that I was dead…” Duke explained, recalling how that one simple sight had made him question his future existence as he’s stared up at Nathan’s gun.

 

“But…” Nathan said, trailing off as he looked at his arm and saw nothing but unblemished skin, “there’s nothing there.”

 

“I know. Weird. But then, this is Haven, right?”

 

Nathan paused again, staring at his arm uncomprehendingly before putting his foot on the gas and starting the truck up again. He contemplated the situation as they continued to drive to the Gull. Duke had seen the tattoo on his arm; the one Valerie had said would be on the man who would kill him. But Nathan had no interest in killing Duke, at least as long as they both stayed on the same team…

 

Of course if Duke ever did try to follow in his father’s footsteps and kill Audrey, he would make sure that Duke joined his dad six feet under.

 

He wondered if that had something to do with it; in that moment he’d been so very tempted to pull the trigger. Maybe…

 

Glancing over to Duke in the passenger seat Nathan saw the look on the other man’s face; he was waiting for some kind of sign that he had actually been paying attention and had heard him.

 

“Right,” Nathan acknowledged, knowing that it was becoming more and more true every day.

 

Nathan drove through Haven, breaking more than a few traffic laws as he tried to shave minutes off the time it took to get to Audrey’s from the church. Again, he berated himself for having not gone into true professional mode and done more than a cursory search of her apartment. If he had, maybe he wouldn’t be playing catch up now and he would have already located her…

 

Duke watched the expression on Nathan’s face darken again and wondered what was going on in his head. He knew he was worried for Audrey and he wasn’t the one who’d shown up at her place and found out she was missing…

 

“So, why were you at Audrey’s tonight?” Duke asked suddenly, remembering Nathan’s evasion from earlier.

 

“I was meeting her...” he started and then realized that even that simple comment might be more than he wanted to tell Duke right now.

 

Before Duke could question him further on his reason being at Audrey’s, which he suspected more than likely had something to do with the discarded jacket and tie in the truck, Nathan’s phone rang and he hurriedly dug it out, hoping that whoever was on the other end had good news for him.

 

-x-

 

Dwight stood staring, still bewildered at the damage before him.

 

He had no idea what had been there, but he knew that whatever it had been, someone had been willing to do just about anything to get it, even something as revolting as....

 

Sighing he opened his phone to call the boss and let him know that his search for Audrey Parker had taking a strange turn.

 

- End Chapter 3 -

 

A little longer this time… I have a lot of things I’m trying to build in here and as I do that I’m figuring out more of the plot. I’ll keep posting as frequently as the chapters come, so I appreciate your patience. And as always, all thoughts and comments are appreciated. Thanks for reading! Ms. J.