Through Thick And Through Thin

Chapter Thirty-Three

Kevin sighed to himself in frustration as yet another side alley did not contain any traces of Linz or Carlos. He was beginning to think that Katie had been wrong, and Carlos had gone the other way, or even gone back through the apartment, out the front door, and into the van, and made his escape there. But no, he wouldn't have had time to do that before they had gotten downstairs. He had probably just gone the other way. Which meant that Katie and A.J. would be reaching him soon, if they had not already. Kevin gulped. He didn't really want his little sister facing off with a criminal like Carlos. But she has A.J. with her, and A.J. is going to kick his ass if he tries to hurt her in the least, Kevin reminded himself. Still, he had an uneasy feeling in his stomach. I'll just go check on them, he decided, turning and running in their direction.

* * *

Carlos cautiously laid Linz down on the hard ground, careful not to bump her head. He cursed to himself, hearing A.J. and Katie advancing quickly on him. Damn them. He could have outrun them, but Linz was weighing him down, and he'd had to pretend to be going in the opposite directions in the hopes of fooling them. But no, Kevin had to be all smart and organized and send A.J. and Katie in the "wrong" direction. Carlos crouched behind a dumpster, waiting. He heard them approaching and drew out the rag that was still damp with the chloroform, praying that only one of them would go down alley he was currently in.

He was in luck. And even better, it was Katie, the weaker one of the two. Carlos thanked his lucky stars as she crept timidly down the alley, seeming to know that something dangerous was lurking there. Carlos glanced nervously at Linz, making sure that Katie wouldn't see her body until the right moment. He smiled in satisfaction. He had placed her in just the right spot. Just a few more steps now... He crouched down a bit further like a cat getting ready to pounce.

There. She had seen Linz. Her eyes widened, and she stared at her brother's girlfriend for a moment before turning towards her companion.

Before she could even open her mouth to say anything, Carlos grabbed her from behind and stuck the chloroform-soaked rag under her nose and mouth. After a moment, her body went limp.

Before A.J. could see what was going on, Carlos took both Katie and Linz and dragged them away.

* * *

"A.J.!" Kevin's voice calling his name stopped A.J. in his tracks.

"Yes? Wait, what are you doing over here?"

"Sorry, I just had this feeing, and--hey, where's Katie?" Kevin asked, frowning and looking around for his sister.

"Oh, she's right down there," A.J. said, pointing down an alley.

Kevin glanced down the alley and raised an eyebrow. "Are you sure?"

A.J. nodded, frowning. "Yeah. So...what exactly are you doing here? Any luck?"

Kevin shook his head. "I just had this weird feeling..." He trailed off and glanced suspiciously down the alley that Katie was supposedly searching in, seeing no one. "Hey, I don't see her down there."

"Well, if you're really that worried...Katie?" he called loudly.

No response.

"Oh, fuck," Kevin muttered. "Katie? Sweets, where are you?" he wondered, starting down the alley frantically for his little sister.

Still no answer.

"Nice going, A.J.," Kevin snapped as A.J. started to follow him.

"I didn't...she...I..." A.J. tried to protest.

"All right, all right," Kevin said, not wanting to start another fight. "Let's just find them and then we'll ask questions!" he suggested as they continued to search for Katie, Linz, and Carlos.

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