ROAD RAGE

                                                                by dreamer36  emperor2@gte.net  donna and robert

The plane landed at Tampa International Airport, passengers filed off the plane.  Texas Rangers James Trivette and Francis Gage looked around to find their contact.  Finally they saw a man with “Williams Sign Co.” on his shirt.

They approach the man and asked if he was Mr. Matthews.

“Yes” the man said and then asked “Are you the two men from Texas?”

“Yes, I’m Trivette and this is Gage”  Jimmy said.

“Nice to meet you” the tall thin man said.  His skin was brown from the sun.  His light brown hair seemed to have been streaked blond from being outdoors so much.

“We’ll get our bags and be right with you”  the Ranger said.

As they walked to the luggage area Gage said “Trivette I’m still not clear on why Walker didn’t come down here with you instead of me.  I know he wants to get this drug ring really bad.”

Trivette told him “Remember Walker and Sydney have to testify in the McGowan arraignment.”

After getting their bags, they rejoined Mr. Matthews.  He wasted no time taking them to the job site. 

Their cover was in place, no one but the main supervisor knew they were really Texas Rangers.

As they stood watching the crane take some workers to the sign, way up in the air, Gage asked,

“Trivette, you’re the engineer and I’m the assistant, right?” 

“Yeah” the other Ranger answered.

“So who goes up there?”  Gage pointed up to the sign.

“Guess,” Trivette said, smiling at his partner.

“That’s what I was afraid of,” the younger man said as he swallowed hard.

Trivette just laughed.

They had gotten information that a large shipment of drugs were being brought into Miami and then smuggled across Florida, and eventually to a buyer in Texas.

The Governors of each state decided to cooperate and join forces to try and stop the drugs before they could get out of the state. 

Jimmy had some experience in the field of outdoor advertising.  While he was in college he had worked as an engineer’s assistant for 4 years.  As for what he didn’t know, well he would just have to bluff his way through.

They were placed in a sign crew that was working on a major highway in Tampa.  There were several crews working in various locations and each crew had some law officers in them, undercover of course.

The information they had received was that the shipment would be shipped over land.

There would be a convoy of trucks bearing electronic equipment, but the law officers were being issued a warrant for only two trucks, if no contraband was found in the first two then the search warrant would become void.

From high on the sign Gage would have a good view of the cars and trucks as they hurried by on Interstate 4.  None of them aware they were being watched.

##################################################

Court had convened at 2:00 p.m.  Opening arguments began and the State began to present it’s case.  The testimony was long and boring.

Ranger Cordell Walker sat in the chair watching his ladylove walk back and forth questioning the witnesses and refuting the objections brought up by the defense.  He loved this woman so much and he was proud of how she conducted herself in court.

He tried hard to keep his mind on the trial but he was having a hard time doing so.  His emotions were trying to get the best of him.  Alex had been working so hard on this case that there had been little time for anything else.  He would be glad when it were over and they could get back to normal (or, at least as normal as it gets).

The trial seemed to drag on for Walker, as his subliminal desires smoldered deep with in him.  He kept changing positions in the chair to get his mind on something else.  He wasn’t able to concentrate on anything but his lady.

Suddenly the sound of the judge’s gavel gave him a start, court was recessing for the evening.  People filed out of the courtroom and once everyone had gone, Alex told Walker that she had to check something at the office and then she would meet him at C.D.’s.

He smiled and said “Okay” even though what he really wanted to say was don’t go to the office, lets go find a place away from everyone and forget the world tonight. 

As she walked off he sighed quietly.  He went to Ranger Headquarters to check his messages.  As soon as he entered the room he was handed a message from an informant that said the informant needed to see Walker as soon as possible.

Walker called the informant and set up a meeting then he called Alex and told her that he would see her later, so she decided to go home instead of C.D.’s.

#################################################

The first day in Florida went smoothly for Trivette and Gage except for one incident.  Gage accidentally dropped a tool from the scaffold he was on, high in the air, and it narrowly missed hitting Trivette in the head.

That night at dinner Jimmy said “ Gage if I didn’t know better I might think you were trying to kill me this afternoon.”

“Come on Trivette it was an accident, I already apologized, what else do you want?”  Gage asked.

“Well, you could buy dinner” Jimmy answered.

“With as much as you eat, I couldn’t afford it.”  Then he flashed his partner a ‘got ya’ smile.

Trivette thought he was going to get a break from the ‘got ya’s’ since Walker wasn’t with him.  He could see he was wrong.

##################################################

The informant had some information that Walker needed but it was late when he finished with him.

Alex had just about given up hope that Walker was coming by that evening.  It was nearly 10:30.  She had gotten hungry earlier and fixed a light salad.

She had just change into an old tee shirt that Walker had left there before, and was settling in to relax with a good book when she heard a knock on the door.              

She was startled at first.  She went to look through the peephole in the door. She was so glad to see her cowboy standing there.

She unlocked and opened the door.  He took her in his arms, hugged her, then lifting her off the floor he stepped inside and closed the door behind them.

“Sorry I’m so late,” he said as he released her from the strong hug.

“Long meeting?” she asked.

“Yeah, but we got some really good information if it is legitimate.”

“Do you trust this informant?” she asked.

“Well, to a point. He has given us good information before”  he said.

“Well, let’s hope it is good information this time then.” she said. Then she asked, “Are you hungry?”

He just smiled

“I could whip us up some eggs or something.”

“The eggs sound good but..”  He pulled her close again and said “ the something sounds even better,” he said kissing her tenderly.

After the kiss ended Alex said “ Well Cowboy what will it be first?” she asked laughing.

“I guess, the eggs” he smiled “I need my strength for “the something” later”. 

While she went to the kitchen, Walker went into the living room and sat on the couch. He took off his boots, leaned back and shut his eyes trying to block out the day and concentrate on his evening with the woman he loved.

He must have dozed off because he woke to the smell of eggs cooking.  He looked and he was covered with a blanket and his boots sat next to him on the floor.

Sitting up he shook his head to clear the cobwebs.

“Good morning  Cowboy”  he heard coming from the kitchen.

“Morning?” he asked.

“Yes you fell asleep before I even got the eggs started and you did not want to wake up.  So I just let you sleep” she said smiling.

“I’m sorry, Alex guess I was more tired than I thought.”  He was really disappointed, he had  been looking forward to spending time with her.   

“Well, breakfast is ready,” she said setting the plates of bacon and eggs on the table.

He smiled and said “ Smells great” then he sat down and they ate in companionable silence.  Once they were done, he said “Why don’t you go get ready for work, I’ll clean up here and I’ll shower and change in the Ranger gym.  I always keep an extra change of clothes there.”

##################################################

Trivette and Gage arrived at the job site for another day of undercover work.  The second day was a little more exciting.  Gage was helping the other workers on the sign high above the road.  Suddenly an altercation occurred on the main road.

A man in a green truck cut in front of a van,

The young man in the van passed the truck and forced him off the road.  Once off the road both men exited their vehicles and an argument followed which quickly developed into a fight.           

The supervisor of the construction crew went to break up the fight.  The man from the van pulled a knife on the other driver and the supervisor.

Gage saw what was happening and notified Trivette.

Trivette went to be of any assistance he could be.  The knife wheeling man turned his attentions to Trivette.  “ Stay away or I’ll cut you” the man shouted. “ I mean it,” he continued.

“Man you don’t want to do that, “look, why don’t you put down the knife and we can discuss things” Trivette tried to reason.

Instead of dropping the knife the man lunged at Trivette.  Using some kick techniques Walker had taught him, he quickly disarmed the man.

Once the police arrived, made the arrest and took the statements, the site supervisor asked Jimmy “ Where’d you learn to fight like that man?”

“I grew up in Baltimore, it was learn to fight or not grow up.”

“You sure learned your lessons well” he said slapping Trivette on the back.

“Thanks”  Jimmy said.

#################################################

It was another long day at Court, Alex spent the day combating objections and tricks done by the defense to drag the trial on.

Walker sat there in the gallery waiting to be called as a witness.  Finally Alex said “The State calls Ranger Walker to the stand.”            

Walker went to the stand and was sworn in.  After he took his seat in the witness box, Alex said, “Please state your name and occupation for the court.”

“Cordell Walker, I’m a Texas Ranger in Company B.”

“Thank you, please tell the court how you first came into contact with the defendant.”

“We had received information that an arms deal was being set up for April third of last year,” he explained.  “We set up surveillance at the suspected site.  Once the suspected arms dealers had arrived and we had probable cause for the search warrant,  we went inside.”  Walker said.

“Who was with you?”  the Prosecutor asked.

“Ranger Sydney Cook, Agents Dennis and Morgan of the F.B.I. and Agents Woods and Franklin of the D.E.A. and officers from the Dallas Police Dept.”

“What did you see when you went inside the building?”

“We saw the defendant, Mr. McGowan and Mr. Uri Pavalik standing over open cases of what appeared to be automatic weapons.”  Walker stated.

“Did you hear them say anything?”

“Yes, Mr. McGowan was describing the weapons to Mr. Pavalik and they were discussing a sale price for them.”

“Then Mr. McGowan seemed to be the one trying to sell the weapons?”  A.D.A. Cahill asked.

“Yes,” was Walkers one word reply.

“Then what happened?” she asked.

“We identified ourselves as police officers.  Mr. McGowan and Mr. Pavalik ran for the back of the building while the men they had helping unload the crates attacked the officers.  Ranger Cook and myself followed the suspects into the back of the warehouse.

Mr. Pavalik attacked Ranger Cook from behind.  She defended herself.

Mr. McGowan hit me with a lead pipe.  Once I was able to defend myself I took Mr. McGowan into custody and Ranger Cook placed Mr. Pavalik under arrest also.

“They were informed of their rights at that time, is that not correct?” Alex asked.

“Yes I gave them their rights, and the officers that took them to the station subsequently gave them their rights also.” Walker said.

“Thank you Ranger Walker” she said.  Alex returned to her seat. “Your witness Counselor” she said as she passed the defense table.

The defense attorney, Jeff Magness, sat motionless for a moment, then he straightened the papers in front of him.

“Ranger Walker” he began “Isn’t it true that you and A.D.A. Cahill are engaged to be married?”

Alex jumped to her feet, “Your Honor, Ranger Walker’s personal life has nothing to do with this trial.”

“Your Honor” Mr. Magness started “It is my intent to show that because of the relationship between Miss Cahill and Ranger Walker, my client is not getting a fair trial and I wish to motion for a mistrial.”

“Your Honor, Council is grasping at straws. Any relationship....” Alex started to say but she was interrupted.

“My client is accused of assaulting a police officer.  If that police officer is engaged to the Assistant District Attorney assigned to the case, we feel the defendant will not get a fair trial as long as Ms. Cahill is prosecuting him.”

“Your Honor, the defense is.......” Alex was once again

This time she was interrupted by the judge rapping her gavel on the bench. “Counselors please,  this is a matter we will discuss in my chambers.”  She then turned her attention to the court and said “This court will be in recess for the lunch hour.  I will see the attorneys in my chambers at 1:30 p.m. and court will reconvene at 2:00.”  She rapped her gavel again to signify that court was adjourned.

The courtroom began to clear out.

Alex was frustrated and angered at the actions and statements of the defense and she could feel her temper rising.

“Alex, calm down. Let’s go to lunch and forget this for now,” Walker said.  He knew she was extremely upset.

“You’re right” she replied “I guess I’d better calm down before we go into the Judge’s chambers.” She smiled at the man she loved.  He always knew how she felt.

They walked arm in arm into C.D.’s Bar and Grill., As it was early it was relatively quiet.  They sat at a table in the corner and the waitress took their order.

Their lunch was quiet and they really enjoyed their time together. It was not too often that they managed to have an entire lunch time together with out any interruptions.  But all too soon the lunch ended.

Alex entered the Judge’s chambers.  Mr. Magness began his argument aggressively. 

After 30 minutes of arguments the judge made her ruling.  She said  “Mr. Magness, the court appreciates your concern for your client receiving a fair trial but Ms. Cahill has always exhibited nothing but professional behavior in any case she has brought before this court.  Her personal relationship with any of the witnesses or victims in this case is in no way affecting, nor can I foresee it affecting, the quality of her work.”  “The trial will continue.”

The defense was not happy with the Judge’s decision, but he had no choice but to accept it.

The court reconvened at 2:00 p.m.  Walker took the stand again.

“Isn’t it true, Ranger Walker, that no one notified my client after you started chasing them that you were police officers?”  Magness asked.

Alex jumped to her feet and said, “Your honor, I object.  Ranger Walker is not on trial here.  All the proper procedures were followed in making this arrest.”

“Objection sustained.” The judge looked at the defense attorney and said “Counselor, watch how you present your questions.”

“Yes, your honor,”  Magness said.

The defense attorney asked a few more questions but his case was weakened by the Judge’s ruling to keep Alex on the case.  His plan was to force them to assign another A.D.A. to the case, which would give him more time to strengthen his defense.

After a hard afternoon of objections and stall tactics court was recessed for the evening.

Later that night they received a phone call from Trivette and Gage.  After they filled them in on the progress of the case they were in Florida on.  Gage told them of Trivette’s excitement from the day with the knife wheeling man. 

“Trivette we sent you down there on a drug raid not to get involved in road rage,” Walker teased.

“Well you know me, I’m multi-talented,” was Jimmy’s remark.

They all laughed.

According to what Walker had learned the night before the shipment was being moved the next day.

This gave them the advantage as they knew what to look for and when to look for it but exactly where it would come was still a mystery.

###############################################

Then the break they had been waiting for arrived.  The convoy was spotted on I-4.  From high on the sign Gage spotted the trucks coming, immediately, the road was closed due to a line being “accidentally” dropped across the road.  Police were called to supposedly direct traffic, which moved very slowly.  Once the trucks under suspicion had gotten to the front of the line, officers from Florida Highway Patrol and D.E.A. served the search warrant on the first truck.

To their disappointment they found nothing but computer parts.  The second truck seemed to show no promise either, disappointment was mounting.  Once the search was complete the agents started to leave when Gage noticed something they could not see. He called Trivette from his observation point and told him what he had seen.          

Gage had noticed that small areas of the top of the trailers seemed to be cut out and then riveted back.  The agents then searched the tops of the rigs.  After checking they found a hiding place containing drugs on the trucks.  This gave them probable cause to search all the trucks.  They found multi-million dollars worth of drugs in the trucks. The bust was a success. “This is one load of drugs that won’t make the streets,” Gage said.

They left for Texas within the next hour.

#################################################

Since this was just an arraignment, the judge decided to hold Mr. McGowan over for trial and given the seriousness of his crimes, bail was denied.

Alex was relieved, this would be a hard trial but she felt confident that she could win it.

Walker told Alex to meet him at C.D.’s later, he had a few things to clear up at the office and then they would take in a movie or something.

Alex went back to her office and dropped her briefcase off there.  The further she got from this case tonight the better she’d like it.

As she was walking to her car she felt strange, as if someone were watching her.  She hurried to her car and as she put the key in the lock....everything went black.

At C.D.’s Walker sat waiting for his lady.  He wondered what was keeping her so he called her office. “Amy, is she in?” he asked.

“No Ranger Walker, she left here 30 minutes ago.  She said she was meeting you at C.D.’s”

Suddenly he felt a cold chill run down his spine.

Immediately he hung up and called the cell phone number he knew so well.  NO ANSWER.

He then called the parking garage at the courthouse,  “Alan” he said. “This is Ranger Walker. Can you tell me if Alex Cahill has left the garage yet?”

“No, Ranger Walker, I don’t remember her leaving”  he said, “But let me check and see if her car is still here.”

“Ok, I’ll wait.” Walker said.

It seemed like an eternity for the attendant to return to the phone.  Finally Alan said “Ranger Walker her car is still in the garage, but I don’t see her.”

Walker felt an awful dread come over him.  “Thanks Alan” he said and hung up the phone.

Just then his phone rang. “Walker” he said. The voice on the other end was familiar “Baker”

“How nice Walker, you remember me,”  Dewey Baker said sarcastically.

Walker flashed back to when Baker had Alex tied up in the cabin he was angered at that.  “Where is Alex?” Walker snapped.

“She’s right here, but she’s kinda’ tied up right now,”  Baker said with an evil laugh.

“Baker if you hurt her I will tear your heart out.” 

“Now Walker, let’s not get violent - yet” Baker said

“What do you want?” Walker asked

“What I want you and the lady here to pay for what I’ve been through in prison for the past 8 years.  Since you two were the ones who trumped up the charges that put me there. That’s all I want.” “Okay Walker here’s the deal.”

Walker listened as Baker detailed his plan.  Then he left C.D.’s without saying a word to anyone.

Soon he arrived at the courthouse parking garage. As he pulled in, the attendant said “Ranger Walker I haven’t seen Miss Cahill yet”.

“That’s okay Alan, I think I’ve found her.”  He said as he looked up to see Dewey Baker standing just in view.

He then drove the Ram and parked it near where he had seen Baker.  He got out and looked around.  Just then he heard a gun cock at his head.

His first instinct was to fight but he knew Baker had Alex somewhere, so he decided to play along to find her.

“Well, well, Walker it is so nice to see you again.  How I have waited for this day.”

“Okay Baker, I’m here.  Now what?”  Walker asked.

Baker pushed him as a signal for him to move forward. 

They walked down a dark corridor through an archway, through a dark hallway and into a storage room.  The cobwebs and dust gave Walker the impression that the existence of this room had been forgotten a long time ago.

Once inside he saw his love bound, sitting in a dirty corner. “Walker” she cried.

He could no longer control his anger, he turned to hit Baker but as he did so he felt a sharp pain just below his kidneys and then everything went blank.

When he came to, he was also bound.

“Walker, are you okay?”  Alex asked quietly but concernedly.

He moved slightly, winced in pain, and said “I’m okay.  How about you?”

“I’m fine. just a little bump on the head,” she said  and then asked “When did he get out?”

“I don’t know.”  “I thought he was in there for good”

Just then Baker strolled up to them and said, “Well with all the down sizing in the prisons and the early releases, a lot of us innocent victims are being released.”

“Innocent, HUH,” Alex said.

Baker grabbed Alex by the jaws, squeezed, and said, “That smart mouth of yours is gonna’ get you in trouble one day.”

Walker was tied but with both feet he kicked Baker but he was not able to generate much force.  “If you touch her again I’ll kill you” Walker yelled.

Once he recovered from the kick Baker took a board and hit Walker across the knees, hard, with it bringing an involuntary groan of pain from Walker.

After which he left them alone.

“Walker are you okay?”  Alex asked.

Walker took a deep breath and closed his eyes to get control of the pain he was feeling. Then, not very convincingly, he said “I’m fine Alex”.

“Yeah sure,” she said.

After a few moments of silence Walker said  “Alex if I can turn around a little more can you untie my hands?”

“I can try,” she said.

He struggled to turn so she could reach his bindings.    

“A little more,” she said and with a few more adjustments she was able to reach the ropes.  It was a challenge to untie the ropes but finally she was able to free him.

Quickly he removed the rest of the ropes and untied her.  Slowly he got to his feet.  The pain in his knees was excruciating but he managed to stand.

Just then, he heard the door knob turn.  He hid behind the door and waited until Baker got almost inside, then he pulled him the rest of the way inside and a fight ensued

Walker landed a few good punches before getting knocked off guard by a well-placed hit to the ribs.  He bent over in pain at which time Baker gave him a hit square on the jaw.

Walker shook his head to get rid of the effects of the punch.  Then he returned Baker’s punches with a few of his own.  Then drawing on all the strength he could muster, he gave one roundhouse kick which sent Baker crashing into a pile of boxes in the opposite corner.  Baker was out cold.

Walker fell to the floor in pain once all his weight came down on his knees.

Alex went for help and before long Baker was back in custody and Walker and Alex were on their way to the hospital.

Trivette and Gage had returned from Florida and heard about what had happened,  They went straight to the hospital from the airport.

Ranger Sydney Cook sat in the waiting room for some word on Walker’s condition.

The doctor had allowed Alex to go into the examination room with Walker since he refused to calm down without her there.

X-Rays had been taken and the results were expected soon.

As they entered the waiting room Trivette asked Sidney, “How’s Walker and Alex?”

“Alex is fine but I’m not sure about Walker.  They are waiting for the x-ray results to see if anything is broken”

“Exactly what happened?” Gage asked.

Sydney explained everything to them.

Meanwhile the doctor returned to Walker’s room. 

“Ranger Walker”  he began “ I’ve got good news and bad news.”

Alex looked at Walker, very worried.

The doctor continued “you have a bruised kidney and you will have to stay off of your legs for a few days, but the good news is nothing is broken” then he smiled.

“How long is a few days?” Walker asked.

“About a week” the doctor said. “and no martial arts” he said firmly.  Then he added “want to keep the both of you overnight just as a precaution.”

Sydney had finished explaining everything that had happened.

“Baker!” Trivette exclaimed. “He’s a bad one all right, maybe this time they will keep him behind bars where he belongs”.

The nurse came out and asked “Are you here for Ranger Walker and Miss Cahill?”

“Yes” they all answered.

“They will both be fine, the doctor is going to keep them over night for observation.  Once they are settled someone will come get you”

“Thanks” Jimmy said.

Walker was settled in a room and the doctor had arranged for a cot to be brought in so Alex could stay in the room with Walker.

The nurse directed the waiting three to the room and they entered to find Walker and Alex in an embrace.  Jimmy just backed the others out.  He could see Walker was in good hands.  After they left Walker pulled Alex next to him in the bed and they both fell asleep in each other’s arms.  They remained that way until morning, when the nurse came in to check on them, she saw them sleeping, smiled and walked out of the room.

the end

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