Undercover
By Sissy (sissy@svs.net)
& Chris (ckline-usa@foreverliving.com)

 

"Undercover? Trivette what do you mean Alex has gone undercover?"

"I'm trying to tell you, Walker, if you'll calm down for a minute."

"Well … it had better be good."

"Alex took some personal time to go up north to check out the disappearance of her friend. I guess this friend is a nightclub singer who has been calling Alex pretty regular at least once a week. About three weeks ago the calls stopped." Trivette watches as Walker's face smoothes out a little more. "Anyway, the information that she got from her landlord and the police was practically nothing. So she took some personal time to go to Wichita Falls and check things out herself."

"But, why in the world did you say she was undercover?"

"Because she's using an alias while she's up there that's why. She figures if no one knows that she's connected to the DA's office she might have a better chance of getting some answers."

"Why the devil didn't you go with her."

"Because I couldn't get away. I've been tied up with this Branson case ever since you left and it finally looks like we may have a solid lead to go on."

"She could've waited on me, I would've went with her."

"She didn't know when you were coming back. You'd already been gone three weeks and she finally decided not to wait any longer." Trivette ran his eyes over his partner's appearance again, hair and beard about two inches longer then when he left. "Man, you look like a mountain man with that long hair and beard."

"Well, Trivette, they're aren't too many barbers up in the badlands. I'll get cleaned up and go on up to see if I can find her. How long has she been gone?"

"She's only been gone about a week, but I don't know, Walker … if you show up, you'll blow her cover because people are likely to know you, and I don't think that will make her too happy." As he watches Walker wrestling with that thought, an idea comes to his mind. "Hey, Walker, why not leave the hair and beard. That's a pretty good disguise. Alex may not even know you like that, especially from a distance."

"That's an idea. Let me get some coffee and you can fill me in on everything you know."

 

*****

 

After getting a shower and changing clothes Walker is on his way to Wichita Falls. Alexis Walker, he smiles at her choice of an alias, simple and easy to remember. Trivette had given him the address of Alex's friend and the name of the club where she was a singer but that was all that Alex had told Trivette before she left. Well, he was sure that if he could find the club he'd find Alex.

 

*****

 

When Alex left Dallas, she wasn't sure what she was going to do; she'd just have to play it by ear. She locates a motel with a small kitchenette and rents it for two weeks. Hopefully that will be enough time to find out what happened to Sandy.

She had met Sandy shortly after arriving in Dallas and although they were in different careers, they had become good friends. After Sandy had moved to Wichita Falls, they had kept in touch by calling each other at least once a week. Three weeks ago Sandy had stopped calling and wasn't returning her calls. She had called the police but they had told her that there had been no missing person report filed and no sign of foul play at her apartment so there was nothing else that they could do. It was then that Alex had decided to go to Wichita Falls for a visit.

The first thing on arriving in Wichita Falls, she pays a visit to the police station. Not learning anything new, she goes to Sandy's apartment and manages to talk the landlord into letting her look through the apartment, but it is neat and tidy. The bed is made and the kitchen is clean … not a thing out of place. A visit to the nightclub is next. But first she goes back to her motel room to change her appearance after making a stop at a drugstore first.

She comes out of the bathroom, puts on the new outfit she had just gotten and stands in front of the mirror. Smiles at the sight in front of her. 'Umm … not bad as a red head. This outfit should catch a few eyes. Since her picture has been in the paper several times she didn't want to take a chance on someone recognizing her, the reason for the disguise.

When she walks into the Texas Longhorn early in the afternoon, she notices a poster in the window advertising for a singer. Preferably country or folk. 'I should be able to handle that, I know quite a few country songs. Sure won't hurt to try.'

After speaking with the owner, Jason Longworth and auditioning for the opening, Alex leaves the club as the new singer of the Texas Longhorn, to start that evening at 9:00. As she drives back to her motel room, she starts giggling, 'What would Walker say if he could see me now.' More giggles.

 

*****

After five days at the club, Alex has settled into her new job pretty well. Her biggest problem is convincing the patrons of the club that she is not interested in dating. So far only one has been persistent. The rest had backed off without any problems.

Early in the afternoon on the sixth day, Alex goes in to the club to pick a song for the nights show, when she's told that Mr. Longworth wants to see her. She knocks on his office door and slowly pushes it open. "You wanted to see me, Mr. Longworth?"

"Yes, Alexis. I was wondering if you would mind if I picked your song for tonight. And please, call me Jason."

"No, I don't mind, I just hope I know it. What song did you have in mind?"

"Sandy sang this song a lot, and I always … liked it. It's called, 'When You Say Nothing At All.' Do you know it?"

Alex notices that his face has taken on a lost look, and his eyes have gotten shiny with unshed tears when he mentions the song. 'I wonder if he's in love with Sandy?' "You miss her, don't you?" She asks softly.

He glances up at Alex, "Does it show that much?" A pained look crosses his face as he says, "I just wish I knew why she left. I thought she was happy here."

"You don't know why she left?"

"When she went home that last night, we had made plans to go on a picnic the next day, since it was Sunday and we were closed. But when I went to pick her up she was … gone." His voice drops to a whisper, "and I haven't seen her since."

"Maybe she didn't leave on her own. Maybe someone made her go. Was she having any trouble with any of the customers?"

"None that I know of. Oh … just Sam Bishop. But he gives all the girls here a hard time. He even gives you a hard time, doesn't he?"

"He did, but not to much after I embarrassed him in front of the customers about keeping his hands to himself."

"I heard about that. Good for you. Sandy did the same thing, he left her alone after that, too." Just then the phone rings, he say's "I'll see you this evening, Alexis" and picks up the receiver.

After going through the song a couple of times that Jason wanted her to sing, she takes off for her room, hoping to get a nap in before the show. Staying up till the early morning hours is a whole new way of life to her.

 

*****

 

When Walker gets to Wichita Falls he finds a motel room then drives by the address that Trivette had given him. After watching the place for over two hours, he finding it hard to stay awake so he goes back to his room where he decides to catch a nap before going to the club later in the evening.

 

*****

 

Alex stands in the back of the curtains looking out over the customers, 'Good crowd.' As she turns away, a warm feeling suddenly comes over her. 'Walker's here!' She peeks through the curtains again, searching the room. She glances from one face to another looking for Walker's, but after looking over the customers several times, she's beginning to think she's wrong when her eyes stop on a man with long red hair and a full red beard. As he turns, looking around the room, she smiles, 'Yes! But what's with the hair and beard?' She turns and goes back to the dressing room, her heart beating wildly, wondering how in the world she can sing with him sitting out in the crowd watching her. Well, she's just gonna have to if she wants to continue with her search for Sandy.

 

*****

 

When Walker enters the small club, the first thing he notices is how packed it is. For a middle of the week, that is. Most clubs just do a scattering of business weeknights, with the majority coming on Saturday nights. Pushing his way through, he takes a quick glance at the picture of the featured singer, notices that she is a redhead and that's all. He finds a seat at a small table on one side of the stage and let's his eyes wander around the room, when sudden warmth starts radiating within him. 'Alex is here.' As he turns again to scan the customers, he half notices that the singer has come out onto the stage and the crowd quiets down the same instant that she appears. The band starts playing and when she begins singing, he snaps his head around, taking a good look at her for the first time.

 

It's amazing how you can speak right to my heart,
Without saying a word you light up the dark,
Try as I may I could never explain,
What I hear when you don't say a thing.

 

When Alex first starts singing, with a low husky voice, she is looking straight at Walker, with a slight smile on her face.

 

The smile on your face lets me know that you need me,
There's truth in your eyes saying you'll never leave me,
The touch of your hand says you'll catch me if ever I fall,
You say it best, when you say nothing at all.

 

As Walker listens to the words everyone else in the room vanishes. Right now, it's just Alex and him. Even though her eyes wander over the crowd they always return to him.

 

All day long I hear people talking out loud,
But when you hold me near, you drown out the crowd,
Old Mister Webster, could never define,
What's being said between your heart and mine.

 

She knew I was here, just as I knew she was. That's the way it's always been.

 

The smile on your face lets me know that you need me,
There's a truth in your eyes, saying you'll never leave me,
The touch of your hand says you'll catch me if ever I fall,
You say it better, when you say nothing at all.

 

When Alex turns away, not wanting to appear too obvious, she notices that Jason is standing in the doorway of his office and she sees the glistening in his eyes, knowing he is crying. 'He is in love with Sandy!' Her eyes swing back to her Ranger, locking with his.

 

The smile on your face lets me know that you need me,
There's a truth in your eyes, saying you'll never leave me,
The touch of your hand says you'll catch me if ever I fall,

 

Her voice drops to almost a whisper, as she keeps her eyes glued to the man she loves.

 

You say it better, darling, when you say nothing at all.

 

When the song ends, the crowd realizes the bearded man was afforded with a special treat when she singled him out. Silence hangs over the room for several heartbeats after she finishes the song, then with a sweeping twirl and a bow she leaves the stage as the room erupts with loud applause, whistles and shouts of 'more' as she disappears behind the curtain. Alex goes quickly to her dressing room, shuts the door, and leans back against it. Her emotions running rampant through her body, making her want to run to the man that holds her heart. Taking several deep breaths, she manages to quiet down her heartbeat just a little when a knock on the door, accelerates it again. First thought, Walker. But when she opens the door Jason is there, "Alexis, listen! Do you hear that? Do you realize that you've brought the house down? No one has ever done that here before, except …" His voice drops slightly, "Sandy. You two must be one of a kind."

When the crowd lets go, Walker emerges from his trance, thankful for the full beard, that is now hiding his emotions from everyone. He has never heard her sing like that before. The song, the words had gone straight to his heart. And listening to the crowd, he realizes she was a hit with them, too.

 

*****

 

As soon as he can, without drawing attention to himself, Walker leaves the nightclub and goes to his truck, with the intention of waiting till Alex leaves then following her to where she is staying. He locates her car behind the club and parks back in the shadows where he can watch it.

 

*****

 

When Alex returns for her second song, she notices that Walker has left. 'Thank God. I don't think I could do that again.' This song is light, a lilting fast paced song, that she has fun singing. When the song ends and before she can leave, a man grabs her by the arm, turning, she sees Sam Bishop. "Let go of me, Sam. Or I'll call the bouncer."

He lets go of her arm but stands in her way to the dressing room. "That was a disgraceful display of yours, singing to that scroungy cowboy. Don't you have any pride? He looks like a bum off the streets. You need a real man, lady."

Alex laughed, "You? I'll bet that bum, as you call him is more of a man than you could ever dream of being. Now, get out of my way." She shoves him aside and continues on to the dressing room.

After changing into jeans and a pullover shirt she goes out the back door to her car, knowing that her cowboy would be waiting for her. Walking to her car, she glances around but doesn't see the Ram anywhere, then suddenly a light flickers in the shadows and a smile lights up her face. As she drives out of the lot into the street she notices a vehicle has pulled out and is following her. The closer she gets to her motel room the faster her heart beats, knowing that it is Walker behind her.

When she stops her car in front of the motel room, she looks to see if Walker's Ram is still behind her. Not seeing it, she gets out of her car, walks up to the door with key in hand, glances around one more time, and then unlocks the door. As she pushes it open, an arm seems to appear out of nowhere, circling her waist, pulling her into the dark room and shutting the door in one swift movement. She gives a slight gasp as she is spun around and his lips claim hers. As the taste of him enters her mouth, she slides her arms up around his neck, and presses herself against him. His lips release hers to leave a trail of heat to her throat, as he nibbles gently, she murmurs, "Oh, darling I've missed you so much." Then starts giggling, "but the beard … ?"

He whispers, "Want me to shave first?" as he runs his tongue around the edge of her ear.

A husky, "No." is her answer as she unbuttons his shirt, then pushes it off his shoulders. She runs her hands through the soft fur on his chest and rubs his nipples with her thumb, bringing a moan from him. Feeling his need for her, she rubs her hips against his bringing more moans. He drops his hands down, takes her shirt and quickly pulls it over her head. When his hand moves up to her breast and finding no bra, he hesitates for just an instant then begins a slow caressing of first one then the other, teasing them to a sensitivity that is nearly unbearable. With desire building at an incredible pace Alex moves him back toward the bed. When his legs touch the edge, he starts removing the rest of her clothes, then bends over and pulls his boots off. Her hand drops to the waistband of his jeans, unbuttons them, and as they drop to the floor he steps out of them.

Moving close together again, they slowly caress each other with their hands before tumbling together onto the bed. Lying half on top of her, he slowly begins sliding his hand up her leg. Leaning over, he leaves a trail of kisses in the wake of his hand. She moans softly as his kisses move tantalizingly slow up her body. He places a soft kiss on the soft triangle of downy curls, bringing a quick gasp from Alex. He continues with the seduction up her stomach, leaving a hot kiss on her belly button, then he moves on to her breasts, taking one nipple into his mouth, sucking gently then giving the same pleasure to the other.

Alex is writhing in agony brought on by his seductive kisses. She feels like she's going out of her mind with pleasure, her breath ragged, and her head turning restlessly from side to side. Finally she can take no more, reaching down she pulls him up to claim his mouth, kissing him hungrily, groaning as she pulls his tongue into her mouth. Then wanting him inside of her, a soft whimper, "I need…," he moves over on top of her and slowly thrusts into her at the same time she raises her hips up to meet him. He feels her deliberately tighten her muscles around him as she moves with him. The thrusts come faster, the drive deeper, as he fills her to bursting. He hears his name as she shudders, then grips him tightly, digging her nails into his shoulders. At the same time his own consciousness dims as he explodes inside of her. They lie still for several minutes just listening to their own heartbeats merging and settling into the same rhythm. He withdraws, kisses her softly, and then rolls to her side, keeping his arms around her. She turns to face him, running her fingers through his beard, murmuring, "I think I kinda like the beard, are you going to keep it?"

"I don't think the Texas Rangers would approve, honey, not like this. So you best enjoy it, now." She moves her head closer, nuzzling her face into it, then with her hand on his cheek, turns his face towards her and touches her lips lightly to his.

"I love you, darling, beard or not." As they lie contentedly in each other's arms, they close their eyes and are soon asleep.

 

*****

 

"Alex, I need to go. Come on, baby, wake up." He leans over and kisses her on the cheek, then her lips.

"Hummmm … so soon?" She stretches her arms up over her head causing the blankets to slip down exposing her breasts to him. Opening her eyes, she looks into his, brings her arms around his neck and pulls him down into a slow tender lingering kiss.

He moans as desire starts building deep inside of him, again. He pulls back slowly, reluctantly, but as his eyes catch sight of her breasts, he loses it. Sinking his face into their softness, he collapses on top of her.

Alex moves her hand down between them, touching his manhood then circling him with her fingers, sliding them slowly down the length then back up, bringing a growl from down deep inside of him. He presses his hips down against her stopping the movement of her hand. He kisses her deeply then begins massaging her breast eliciting soft whimpers from her. She rolls him quickly onto his back and straddles him, impaling herself on his shaft. Moving slowly at first, he lets her set the pace but as the passion rises he places his hands on her hips increasing the speed of the thrusts and driving deeper into her. As they reach the height of ecstasy, Walker pulls her down against his chest, holding her tight against him as they both reach for the stars. She raises slowly off of him and lays down at his side, her head on his shoulder, arm across his chest and her leg across his thigh, her favorite sleeping position. With his arm around her, he turns his head and kisses her gently on the top of her head, and they give into sleep again.

 

*****

 

Walker comes out of the bathroom, toweling his hair, looking at the love of his life sleeping peacefully. He dresses, moves over to the bed, and sits on the edge, then reaches over and pushes her hair back from her eyes. He kisses her softly on the lips, causing her eyes to flutter.

"Alex, wake up, baby. We need to talk." When she stretches this time, he smiles and moves well back from her. "Alex, I need for you to tell me what you've found out so far."

She sits up, slowly, pulling the sheet up around her, notices the distance between them, smiles at him, and reaches for his hand. As she takes his hand, "I don't have to much. I know that Jason Longworth is in love with Sandy and has no idea what happened to her. Her place looks like she just walked out and never returned. But, that's all I've … Wait a minute, could you get in touch with Jimmy and have him look up a Sam Bishop? He was giving Sandy a hard time but Jason says he gives all the girls a hard time. There's just something about him … It may be nothing, but I'd like to know if he has a record."

Walker's eyes harden, "Did he give you a hard time, too"

"At first, but after embarrassing him in front of the customers, he stays away from me. Except last night." She smiles, remembering the encounter.

"What happened last night?"

"He told me I made a fool of myself picking out, his words, 'a scroungy cowboy' to sing to. He said you were just a bum off the streets, what I needed was a real man." Her eyes go soft as she looks into Walker's. "If he only knew how much of a man you really are."

"You watch him, Alex. You've rebuffed him and he may try to show you a different side of himself. What did you tell him?"

"I told him that 'bum' was probably more of a man, then he could ever dream of being."

He smiles at her, "Probably?" He pulls her close then and kisses her quickly before standing, starting for the door.

With a pout on her face, "Do you really have to leave?"

He turns back to look at her, his face softening, "Yes, honey, if I don't leave now …!"

A whispered response, "Would that be so bad?"
 

"No, not bad. Dangerous. You don't want to compromise your search by taking up with a 'bum'."

"Oh, you," Throws a pillow at the door as he opens it and quickly ducks out, pulling it closed after him.

 

*****

 

After the door shuts, Alex slides back under the blankets, pulls them up around her chin, and shuts her eyes. Just before dropping back into never-never land, the alarm goes off. She jumps, groans, and then rolls over to look at the clock. '2:00 p.m.' She finally throws the covers back and sits up. Muttering, she drags herself into the bathroom. Picks up the towel that Walker had used, brings it to her nose and inhales deeply, remembering, then slowly lets it fall into the pile of dirty clothes behind the door. After her shower, she fixes herself a light breakfast of toast, orange juice and coffee, before getting dressed.

Opening the door to the bright afternoon sunshine, she glances around, hoping to see the Ram, but not really expecting to, she turns and looks the door. Moving to her car, she puts the key into the lock but before she can turn it, someone grabs her around the waist, at the same time a hand covers her mouth, and a voice in her ear, "Stay still and you won't get hurt." Then she is half dragged to a van and pulled inside. When he takes his hand away from her mouth, she opens it to scream, and he slams his fist into her face.

 

*****

 

Alex wakes up on a bed in a small room. She lies still, moving her eyes only, seeing nothing in the room but the bed she is lying on, no other furniture, no window, and just the one door. She sits up and slides to the edge of the bed to stand up just as the door opens.

"Well, it's about time you woke up. I didn't think I hit you that hard. But no matter, that probably won't be the only smack you get."

"Sam Bishop. Why am I not surprised." She sits back down and scoots to the middle of the bed, keeping a close eye on him. "I'll bet you have Sandy, too, don't you?"

Surprise shows on his face, then, "Now, why would you say that?"

"Because you probably took her the same way you took me. Is she here? Have you hurt her?"

"Well, little miss smarty pants, you're just full of questions aren't you." He gives Alex a look of pure hate. And in a voice as cold as ice, "Yes, she's here. Right where she belongs. She's my wife, now."

"That's a lie! Sandy would never marry the likes of you. What have you done with her?" She watches as his face twists in an ugly sneer.

"You'll find out soon enough, because you're going to join her. You're going to be wife No. 2!" He looks at her with the coldest eyes she's every seen, causing a chill to run through her body. For the first time since she woke up in this small room, Alex feels a very real fear.

He grabs her arm, pulling her off the bed and guides her out of the room down a hall into another room almost identical to the one she had just left. But in this room, Sandy is lying on the bed, tied and gagged. When she sees Alex, her eyes widen in fear, and she starts struggling against her ropes. "Don't Sandy. Please. I'm alright." Sandy's struggles cease and she lies still again, moving her eyes to the man standing behind Alex. Sam shoves Alex onto the bed, and takes the gag out of Sandy's mouth and unties her. Then he turns and leaves the room, pulling the door shut and locking it.

Alex pulls Sandy up into her arms and holds her tight. "Sandy, are you alright? Are you hurt? Did he … ?"

Sandy pulls back, looks into her friend's eyes and begins crying, deep racking sobs. Alex pulls her back into her arms and holds her until the crying slows. "It's alright Sandy, I have a friend here and he'll get both of us out of this place. Can you tell me what his reason for all of this is?"

Alex moves back as Sandy wipes her eyes, "From his babbling, I've managed picked up bits and pieces but none of it makes a lot of sense. Evidently he was married at one time and had a son, but something happened to them. I don't know what, but I think it has driven him crazy. From what little I've heard him say, he was very much in love with his wife, and his son was his whole life. In his crazy way of thinking, he feels if he only had another son, everything would be all right. I think … that's why he kidnapped me … to give him a son."

"Oh, Sandy. God, this is awful. But didn't you tell him that you …"

"I did, but I don't think he even heard me. I … quit bringing it up after awhile because I was afraid if he knew I couldn't have children … he'd kill me. He comes in here every night … does his thing, then he leaves me alone. The only time he ever ties me up is when he's going to be gone for any length of time. He feeds me, makes me shower after every … well, you get the idea." She turns to look at Alex, seeing for the first time, that she is a redhead. "Alex, what are you doing up here? And why the red hair?"

Alex giggles, "It's a long story, Sandy. But to make it short, I got worried when I didn't hear from you, came up to try and find you, went to work singing at the Texas Longhorn and … ended up here with you."

"You're singing at the Longhorn? Have you seen Jason? How is he?"

"He's worried sick about you disappearing. I think he's in love with you, Sandy. At least that's the impression I got." Alex watches her friend's face, "You're in love with him, too, aren't you?"

"Well, that's a thing of the past now, isn't it? He sure isn't going to want me after this, is he?"

"Sandy, don't be so quick to judge him. He seems like a pretty all right guy. A lot like mine."

"Are you and this Texas Ranger still an item?"

Alex smiles, remembering last night, "Yes, we're still an item. More than ever."

"I'd like to meet him. He really sounds special."

"Oh, I'm sure you will, and he is special … very special."

 

*****

 

No being sure when Alex leaves for the club, he drives by her motel on the off chance of maybe getting to see her again and also letting her know what Trivette had found out. Seeing her car, he smiles, then pulls in beside it. Leaving the truck he notices her keys dangling in the lock. Fear grabs him as he goes to the door of her room. 'Locked. Which means she was getting ready to leave.' He stands still for just a minute, mind working quickly, he jumps in the truck and heads out into the street. He drives like a madman to the Texas Longhorn.

He goes around to the back and parks, unlocking his glove box, he takes out his gun and holster and belts it around his waist. Taking his badge out of his shirt pocket he pins it to his shirt than quickly leaves the truck and enters the back door where a very large bouncer is coming to greet him. "I need to see Jason Longworth. Now!"

"Who do you think you are, making demands like that?"

"I'm a Texas Ranger, that's who. Now, are you going to move so I can see him or do I go over you?"

"I guess you're going to have to go over …"

"What's going on out here? Danny, who is this guy?" Hearing the shouting, Jason Longworth is coming up behind his bouncer.

"My name is Cordell Walker, I'm a Texas Ranger. Your singer is a friend of mine and she's disappeared from her room. I want your help in finding her."

Jason looks at him for just a minute. "Come into my office." He turns and enters his office with Walker right behind him.

"I think Sam Bishop has Alex. I have his address but I don't know the streets here so I want you to go with me. I think he took Sandy Donaldson as well. I'll explain everything on the way."

When Jason hears Sandy's name, he grabs his hat, and comes around the desk, "Let's go!"

 

*****

 

Alex and Sandy are talking quietly when the door swings open. "Well, now ain't this cozy. Come on, Miss Mouth, today is your day." He grabs Alex by the arm before she can protest and starts dragging her out of the room. Sandy comes up behind Sam, jumps up on his back and throws her arms around his neck hanging on for dear life. Still hanging onto Alex with one hand, he grabs a handful of Sandy's hair and yanks hard, pulling her off, then backhands her, sending her flying back onto the bed. He takes Alex out of the room, pulls the door shut and locks it. Alex starts kicking and screaming as he takes her back to the first room she was in.

He throws her on the bed, then turns and locks the door. Looking back at her, "Listen, bitch, we can do this the hard way or the easy way, it don't matter much to me which."

As he comes toward her, she kicks out, but he swats her leg away, then grabs her by the shirt and yanking, ripping it completely off. Alex backs up, dodging, as he makes a grab for her again. He starts laughing, "Hey, the more you fight the more it turns me on." He makes another grab for her this time getting a handful of hair. He pulls her up against him, turns her around then wraps his arm around her waist. With his other hand he tries to unbutton her jeans. Alex screams, and renews her struggles.

Suddenly, she hears a loud racket, turning her head slightly, she sees the door caving in. Sam lets her go and turns in time to catch a foot in his midsection, shoving him back against the wall. As he straightens up, Walker hits him on the side of his head with a spinning back kick, twice, before Sam collapses on the floor.

Walker turns then and takes Alex into his arms holding her tight till her shaking subsides. "Oh, God, Walker, he was …"

"Shh … it's over, honey. It's over." Seeing that she has no shirt on, he quickly takes his off and drapes it around her. Bringing her back into his arms they walk out of the room to find Sandy. But Sandy is already in good hands. Jason has found her, and is holding her like he never intends to let her go.

 

*****

 

After the police have taken Sam Bishop away, Jason watches as Sandy and Alex hug each other, then turns to face Walker. "I don't know how I'll ever be able to thank you and Alexis, I mean … Alex, for finding Sandy for me. I didn't realize how much I loved her till she was gone. I'm never going to let her out of my sight again. I'm going to marry her, if she'll have me, that is."

"Even after …"

"That was something she had no control over, I could never hold that against her. I hope I'm a better man then that." He reaches out for Walker's hand, "Thank you, very much."

"No thanks needed. If you remember right, I was after my lady, too."
"You were the one she was singing to at the club the other night weren't you? No wonder she sang like she did. You've got one fine woman, there, Walker." He turns, walks over to Sandy, takes her in his arms then they walk over and get into a police car to be taken back to the club.

"I know." He whispers as he watches Alex turn Sandy over to Jason and walks back to him.

Alex moves into his arms and snuggles close. "Let's go home, darling. Let's go home."

By the time they collect Alex's things from the motel and go by Walker's room, the sky is just starting to turn pink in the east as they start back to Dallas and home.

It's nearly dark by the time they get back to the ranch. After a quick meal and a warm shower, they practically crawl into bed. Wrapped in each others arms, they fall into an exhausted sleep.

The next day is spent relaxing and catnapping as they try to get their bodies back in sync with their life before Wichita Falls. Alex's body still wants to sleep all day and stay up most of the night. After supper, Walker disappears upstairs while Alex cleans up the kitchen. He returns just as she puts the last dish away. When she hears him coming down the stairs, she goes to meet him thinking that maybe they can sit on the porch for awhile. "Walker, you're beautiful beard is gone! Oh, I was really getting to like it!"

"I told you I couldn't keep it. Besides, it was starting to itch." He takes her into his arms, kisses her softly, nuzzles her ear and whispers, "Honey, can I talk you into doing me a little favor?"

"Well, cowboy, depends on the favor and how bad you want it." She says with a twinkle in her eye and a little giggle.

"You just name your price." He takes her by the arm and guides her to the kitchen. He gets a pair of scissors out of a drawer and hands them to her as he sits down on a chair.

"Darling, you can't be serious! I know absolutely nothing about cutting hair."

"Well, just take a little off at a time until it looks about the right length. I hate going to a barber shop." He turns and looks up into her eyes, "Please?"

"Okay … but I don't want to hear any complaints, you got that."

"No complaints."

Thirty minutes later there is a huge pile of hair on the floor around Walker. Alex steps back and looks at the finished job. "Hummm … not bad. Let me get a mirror, honey, see if that's short enough." When she returns with a mirror, she hands it to Walker and he looks first this way, then that way, "Hmmm …" Moves into the hall where the bigger mirror and looks at the back again.

"Alex …?"

"Remember, Walker, no complaints. So, does it look all right?"

He puts the mirror down, grabs her up into his arms and twirls her around. "It's look's great. Thanks baby."

A knock at the door brings the happy time to an end. They move together to see who has come visiting. Opening the door, they find Trivette, grinning from ear to ear.

"If I had known you were back, I wouldn't have come out. But I did come out and you are back.
Sorry."

"What are you doing here, Trivette?"

"I've been taking care of the horses for the last couple of days. Your neighbor had to take his wife to the hospital. A new baby?"

"Oh, well, come on in."

"Well, did she know you Walker?"

"Yeah, Trivette, she knew me. I didn't fool her for a minute." Turns and looks into Alex's eyes remembering the night she sang to him. Alex reads his thoughts and leans over and kisses him lightly on the lips."

"So I guess the mountain man is gone, huh?"

Alex begins laughing, "Yes, Jimmy, he's out on the kitchen floor." Walker starts laughing, too. Trivette gives them both a puzzled look and goes out to the kitchen. They hear a roar from him as he understands what Alex meant.

"Hey, Walker, did you think to take a picture before all of that came off?"

"Oh, darling, we should have. Now you have to grow it all back, again!!"

"Not on your life!"

The End.