Are We There Yet?

Deirdre hadn't left Char completely out of the loop.  After Char had told her mother what she could do with her ultimatum, they had shared a few heated words.  The conversation went along the lines of:

"What!?  You're going to leave you own mother and stick with the goddamn feds?"

"Wait a second!  Who left who, huh?  I don't recall seeing you for, oh, saaay six, seven years!  What, your PTA meeting run long?"

"Don't you speak to me like that, Charlotte Karen Templeton!"

Betwixt and between all the shouting and violent arm waving of the two hysterical women in the middle of the woods, there was, in fact, a coherent, and fairly significant, conversation. 

Deirdre managed to explain (between shouts of anger and huffs of frustration) that she had been involved in a high profile case those seven years ago which had gone horribly awry.  The only way to save herself, and her family, was to stage her death and slink away into the shadows for, well, the remainder of her life.  She had always kept close contact with Bud, however, keeping on eye on things as much as she could. 

When the mess with Martin and Sammy arose, she cursed (and applauded) herself for bringing up her boys to be decent people who knew how bad the business really was and for wanting to get out of it.  They were getting themselves into trouble, she knew, by getting involved with the authorities.  She also knew that it was the only way.  She immediately took it upon herself to monitor the situation as best she could, especially with the Isaacsons, from her place in the shadows.  There was no doubt; Deirdre had her ways.  In fact, it was her who had caused the gun fight that night at the bank.  She set it up for the sole purpose of keeping Charlotte clear away from the ruthless gang.  Even Deirdre had to admit that she would rather see her daughter in the hands of the feds than the Isaacsons.

In the woods, Deirdre had explained all of this to Charlotte, in the hopes she would at least understand, if not forgive her for abandoning her family.  She told Char most of what she knew about the Isaacsons; where they were located, what their activity had been for the last few weeks, even the time frames when they would be at their headquarters.

What Deirdre didn't know when Char had so unceremoniously told her to beat it, was that Char was dying to go with her.  She wanted to go with her mother and hide with her forever.  Unfortunately, that wouldn't rescue Martin.  Relating Deirdre's information to Gary and Kurt, on the other hand, most likely would.  It had been a difficult descion, yet remarkably simple at the same time.

Char was riding along in the back seat with her guys, gazing out the window at the passing laundromats and take-out places, mostly thinking a lot about nothing in particular.

"You said you don't know where your mother was going?"

Char kept her focus on the contents outside of her window.  "No, I told you...she didn't say anything about that...I told you everything she said already."

"What's next?"  Gary was driving.  He chanced a glance or two away from the road and at Kurt in the passenger seat.

Kurt turned back towards the front.  He had been twisted in his seat, looking at Char and trying to get more information from her but she seemed to be preoccupied; in fact, she had barely looked at him since they left the zoo which disconcerted him a little.  Kurt rubbed the back of his head, stretching his arm as much as he could in the confined space. "I guess we move in when we have the logistics worked out.  With luck we'll find Martin being held there and bring them in on assault, battery and false imprisonment.  Once we get them in, we'll work on taking Harold down for the big stuff."

Char focused her attention towards the front seat. "How will you do that?"

Kurt twisted around again. "Sammy and Martin will come forward with their statements and hopefully Moira too.  We'll gather up the evidence once we get a warrant for their headquarters.  It won't be hard."

"And then it's over?"

"Well, there's the trial and--"

Char cut him off. "No, I mean for me.  It'll be all over, right?"

Kurt sighed audibly.  Char would not be getting out of this as easily as that.  She would be charged, herself, with God knows how many different things.  It would be worse for Sammy and Martin.  He couldn't bear to tell her that, however.  "I hope so, Charlotte.  But let's focus on one thing at a time; first, we have to bring the Isaacsons in."

The End

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