Hide – An Infected Flash Fic

If someone donates to my Ko-Fi , I take flash fic suggestions. Roan was the suggestion, and I figured I had nothing. Which is how you end up with this story, south of two thousand words, about how retirement is going from him. Short answer – it’s not. No matter what, Roan is going to Roan. But at least he’s trying. 

 

 

**

 

A Tim Horton’s seemed like the weirdest possible place for this confrontation. But Greg was pretending to be Canadian, right? He was sticking to his cover identity, and you had to respect that, at least from a remove. Because otherwise, he was a despicable person. Such a piece of shit it was hard to believe he wasn’t part of the Trump administration. Yet. Give it time.

 

As it turned out, the coffee shop was only half full, so even if things got weird fast, there wouldn’t be as many stunned witnesses as there could have been. Greg was sitting in a back booth, sipping coffee and looking at a newspaper. As Roan walked towards him, he noticed out of the corner of his eye a woman look up in shock from her table, and Roan assumed she recognized him from an article or two. To prove she had, she picked up her cup and left immediately, not running but almost. Not only did that prove she had recognized him, but that she had done enough reading to know whenever he showed up, trouble was usually right behind. There was still a chance this could go civilly, but honestly, he kind of hoped it didn’t.

 

Roan sat in the bench seat across from Greg, who looked up at him with curiosity. He didn’t recognize him? Oh boy, this was going to be fun. He raised his caterpillar thick eyebrows and opened his mouth to say something, but Roan jumped in and cut him off. “Of all the places you could have run to, Greg, this was honestly the weirdest. You know how gay friendly Canada seems to be, right?”

 

His eyes widened slightly at the use of his real name, but he hunched forward and tried to bluster him. Piece of shit. “You have me mistaken for -“

 

“Someone else? No I don’t think so, Greg Turkington. Did you really think shaving your head and adding fake glasses was an actual identity change? All of it was the absolute least you could do. Going from casual suburban neo-nazi to hard core nerdy neo-nazi is kind of a lateral move.”

 

He scowled at him, making deep creases in his haggard face. It looked like he’d been on a starvation diet. Some people couldn’t do dastardly things without it showing all over their face. Roan was glad that had never been one of his problems. “Who the fuck are you?” he said, in a low, deep voice he must have thought was threatening.

 

Roan almost laughed. “Roan McKichan, private eye.”

 

Like Roan assumed, Greg started to stand up, but Roan grabbed his arm and yanked him back down into his seat. “My associate Holden is outside, just in case you make a break for it. And do you know what happened to the last guy I left to Holden’s discretion? I don’t know, because his body hasn’t been found yet. So which of us would you rather deal with?”

 

Greg yanked his arm back, like that was somehow a macho move. “Are you threatening me?”

 

Roan rolled his eyes. “Jesus Christ, man. Are you actually going to pretend you don’t know why I’m here?”

 

“I don’t. I suggest you stop harassing me -“

 

“Or what, kidnapper?” Roan snapped.

 

“I am not a kidnapper. I’m a rescuer. Her mother’s a pervert.”

 

Sometimes, it was hard not to growl. “Her mother’s a lesbian, and I don’t think an abuser has any room to judge anyone.”

 

“That bitch made that abuse shit up. She’s my daughter, and I ain’t gonna let Lydia indoctrinate her.”

 

Roan shook his head. Greg here – currently going by the more generic Anthony Jacobs – lost a custody battle with his ex-wife, Lydia Torrance, over their daughter, Hailey. So he kidnapped Hailey – currently living with him as Kenly Jacobs – and traded the States for Canada. He’d told Lydia if she tried to come after him, he’d kill Hailey. Which was why Roan decided to confront Greg when he was away from his place and Hailey – which turned out to be a rare thing – and brought Holden with as plan B.

 

There was a very slim chance that Greg would somehow duck him. If that happened, Holden had one job: make sure Greg didn’t get anywhere near his place or Hailey. No holds barred. Roan had seen kids pay too damn much for the “sin” of a psychopathic parent, and he didn’t want Hailey to be simply another statistic. Other back up might hesitate or have moral qualms, but as Holden said, “I’m not being paid for moral qualms.” He wasn’t. And Roan was happy to know that if Greg somehow got away, he was a dead man the second Holden laid eyes on him.

 

Not that he honestly thought Greg had a chance of escaping him. But he’d promised both Dylan and Doctor Rosenberg he’d take his increasing aneurysm risk seriously, and try not to let the lion out. But sometimes that was an extremely tall order, especially in cases like this, where he was within arm’s length of a supreme shithead with an eminently punchable face. “You know, if we follow this belief process of yours, straight people would indoctrinate their kids into being straight, which, trust me, doesn’t work. You’re just a fuckhead who probably shouldn’t have bred, but that’s water under the bridge now.”

 

“I told her what would happen if she tried to find me,” he said, standing up. Roan jumped to his feet too. “That bitch isn’t gonna get anything but a corpse.”

 

Roan put a hand on Greg’s left shoulder. “You’re not going anywhere.”

 

“The hell I’m -” Greg grabbed Roan’s arm to dislodge it, so Roan sunk his fingers in. His hand ached with the need to keep crushing, until he heard the snap of a bone in Greg’s body. He could feel the lion wanting out, taste the blood in his mouth, and it was so easy to imagine giving in and biting his throat and ripping, Greg would be dead in a pool of his own blood, long before he had any idea what exactly had happened.

 

Greg’s eyes widened at the sheer amount of strength he was feeling. “You’re hurting me.”

 

“Good.” The growl that had been threatening to burble up escaped his throat with the last syllable, and when Greg’s caterpillar eyebrows shot towards the sky, Roan knew he had heard it too. He’d heard it and had no idea what it was supposed to mean. Feeling the uncertainty, Roan shoved Greg back, and he collapsed  into his seat, unconsciously rubbing his upper arm, where Roan imagined he’d have fingertip shaped bruises for weeks. Roan would have sworn he had started to feel a bone in his arm giving before he let him go.

 

“Who the fuck are you?” he asked, genuinely stunned.

 

“I told you, and further discussion wouldn’t really help. Suffice to say, I could use your head to split this table in half if you keep irritating me, so I’d stop if I were you.”

 

Roan had seen the hollow eyed look Greg was giving him a thousand times in his life. He had just made himself an other to him; he was now a threat, and not to be trusted.Which was fine with Roan. As always, he’d rather be feared than pitied. “You’re crazy.”

 

“Says the kidnapper. Again, how am I supposed to take anything you’re saying seriously? That’s a fucking felony when you cross state lines, and you crossed a fucking border. If that’s not a double felony, it should be.”

 

His words were bouncing off Greg’s skull. He was probably still trying to figure out if he actually heard a growl coming from him. “What are you gonna do with me?”

 

“Now, nothing. We’re waiting.”

 

“Waiting for what?”

 

“You’re not very bright, are you, Greg?”

 

Roan saw his muscles tense when he finally put it together, so all Roan had to do was lean across the table when he tried to stand, and shove him back down again. The bench seat creaked with the force.

 

Holden was of the opinion that plan B should be plan A, and fuck this guy. Honestly, Roan agreed with him, but he’d promised Dyl and Petra he’d try and exert a little more control, especially after that whole thing in Seattle last time. And Petra didn’t know about that, but Dylan did. He was aware he had to be calmer, and let the lion out less if he didn’t want to end up in the hospital again. But. like many things in life, that was easier said than done. Roan could feel the lion in the back of his mind, impatiently waiting for its time to come out.

 

Roan finally saw the cop car park in front of the shop, and it felt like a weigh was off his shoulders. This didn’t have to be an uglier scene than it already was. He felt his phone buzz in his pocket, and assumed it was Holden letting him know the po-po were here.

 

“Since you’ll have nothing but time in prison, why don’t you look me up? Then you’ll realize how fucking lucky you are. The only reason I haven’t sunk my teeth in your jugular is because I promised my husband I’d try not to.”

 

Greg’s shock gave way to what seemed to be disgust. “Husband?”

 

“Oh yeah. Karma’s a bitch, ain’t it? You got your life nuked from orbit by the gay mafia.” Roan gave him a sarcastic one finger salute as the cops approached, ready to take Greg away.

 

Okay, Roan didn’t play by the rules that much. But wasn’t this proof he was trying?

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