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 Fanfic: Hostage!

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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Tue Dec 14, 2010 6:18 pm

Chapter 25

As Marjorie peered through the window the car that had stopped right in front of her shop quickly pulled away and just as quickly disappeared from sight when it turned left at the crossroads at the top of the street. She moved her gaze from its disappearing shape to inform the others of the outcome of her watch without seeing a second car that followed the same route.

“No, not the car we’re waiting for, I’m afraid. It shot off up the road just as I looked out. Funny thing, though … it turned left and that is a dead end. It leads to an access track for the parking at the back of the businesses opposite but I didn’t recognise it as anyone I knew … very strange!” Marjorie didn’t return to the gathering that had followed her through to the shop but instead discussed the event from her position at the window. She preferred to stand sentinel, ready to greet Mr Cowell’s arrival and nothing was going to make her give up her vantage point. But everyone remained upbeat and chatted happily while they waited for deliverance.

Their wait dragged on and vigilance waned so, when another car arrived, no one was even aware of its presence. Their location was much further from the hotel in the centre of the city than it was from the country houses of the Coyles and the O’Donnells so, of course, it was Bridie who was second on the scene. She pulled up near the orchard wall. She knew this would be a good vantage point after hearing Martin’s detailed report of the facilitator’s covert behaviour at the rear of the shops. Now he was talking again and his voice was laced with urgency.

“Bloody hell, Auntie Bridie he’s getting high up by the look of it. He’s just shinned up the fire escape and onto the flat roof. I can’t see him now but my bet is that he’ll watching from behind the brick façade on top of the building. You can see everything that’s going on in the street below from there.. He’s carrying a case, too - long, oblong - looks like a rifle to me.” Bridie blanched; there was no doubt in her mind now - she knew, at last, his bloody intentions.

As she waited mammy fretted. She sucked again on her already ruined nails and wished for what felt like the hundredth time, that she new the exact premises that were harbouring Urs and Emily. But even if she had known there was a limit to what she might do. She still had to think of her boys. Their continuing freedom hung in the balance. But it was Urs and his lady that had to be uppermost in her thoughts now. If Coyle managed to harm them or even, God forbid, do the unthinkable, then she would never forgive herself and, of course, then the full weight of Mr Cowell’s malice would rend her family forever. She had never been more certain , though, that it would be her actions that would decide the outcome tonight.

Her musing was interrupted by the arrival of a fleet of imposing looking cars that lined the darkened street and she sat forward, her attention now obsessive. The first car contained the requisite heavies who checked out the perimeter before Mr Cowell exited the second car. She watched closely to see which of the quaint premises he would enter then, once he and his security were safely inside, she hit the ignition and turned slowly into the street. She knew where she needed to be now - but how would she gain access? The strong-arm team would be unlikely to let her merely waltz in and once Urs saw her then all hell would break loose. If only she could persuade someone that she was on the side of the angels - even if her halo was a tad dusty!

She crawled along the street and the wary eyes of the second security team that had remained on surveillance, followed her progress. She needed to allay suspicion so she adopted her ‘sweet old lady’ face and wound the window down as she cruised to the curb.

“Excuse me, sir, could you tell me where I am - I seem to be lost?” She smiled vacuously and was not surprised when she was fobbed off with a curt:

“Sorry Ma‘am, don‘t know the area“. If these guys could be distracted too easily then they weren’t worth the shoe leather they were now wearing out as they patrolled the street so this satisfied her. At least they might be able to keep Urs safe should she be unable to. It would have been foolish to dally further - no need to call suspicion on herself so she drove to the crossroads and turned right. Here she saw another car, pulled up in the shadow of the adjacent buildings. Were they keeping out of sight? The hairs on her neck leapt to attention as she considered that Coyle might have back-up after all. She peered frankly into the interior of the car, deciding that, if necessary she would cause a scene in the street if her fears were true - anything to keep her darling safe now. There were three men in the car, one very tall driver and two others, one in the front and one in the back.

As she surveyed them three pairs of eyes swivelled in her direction and Mammy got a good look at the faces of the car’s occupants. If fear had produced shivers so recently, it was now a whole other sensation that travelled the length of her spine and up into her hair. She couldn’t help herself; the word jumped to her lips before her brain was aware.

“Divos!”

To the three guys in the car this was an unexpected annoyance. They loved their fans, of course, but could there have been a worse time to have one bringing them to the attention of everyone else in the vicinity? Sebastien raised his finger to his lips and made shushing noises while David and Carlos each shook their heads. Bridie realised her stupidity immediately and mouthed an apology then, seeing nothing else for it but to throw herself at their mercy, she slid out of her car and tiptoed across the road and round to the driver’s side window. The three friends watched this comedy with a mixture of horror and, frankly, inappropriate amusement - what in the Lord’s name was she doing? She tapped on the glass and when David merely stared at her she made little winding gestures. Slowly he complied. He had a feeling he probably shouldn’t have but something - no idea what, seemed to compel him to do it.

“Hello David, how glad am I to see you - and you Sebastien and you Carlos, too, of course.” Her whisper was frantic, totally belying the innocuous words she spoke. There were three murmured ‘hello’s in reply but Bridie over-rode them all as she launched into the reason she was there.

“This is a bit delicate, gentlemen, but I am assuming that you are here to assist in the rescue of Urs and his lady friend. Now, I have some very important information concerning this and I fear that Urs is still in a lot of danger so someone is going to have to act and act fast!”

Bridie held nothing back and she watched the faces of her heroes display every emotion as she acquainted them with the facts. They were angered when they heard the part her family had played in the whole saga but then were mollified somewhat when she explained that it was she who had come clean about it to Simon. But when she rushed along to tell of the facilitator and the threat he now posed to Urs’s and Emily’s safety there was an immediate exodus from the vehicle.

“Where is he, I’ll kill him myself?” David was already striding away on his impossibly long legs and Bridie had to drag on his arm to make him stop and see sense.

“No, darlin’, no! Make no mistake, this is an extremely ruthless and dangerous man. There is a lot of blood on his hands so he wouldn't be averse to putting a drop more there. No, I suggest you ring your boss and tell him to keep Urs inside and let that high falutin’ security outfit of his do the rest. They will know how to handle him.

David saw the efficacy of Bridie’s plan at once, and so patted his pockets until he located his phone and then made the all important call. Urs’s safety had to be the paramount objective but he still fumed at his enforced inaction. Seb and Carlos adopted a more pragmatic position. They knew the kind of men that Simon employed for his security teams and felt secure in the knowledge that they were the correct people to act. Carlos leaned over to the still pacing David though, an assassin’s sneer curling his lip.

“Hey David, be patient. We’ll let the heavies go up there and get him and then we’ll aim a few kicks and punches when they bring him down.” Seb laughed, his eyes dancing as he ran the picture through his mind and David, still tightly wound, hit his fist into his other hand with such ferocity that Bridie jumped.

One of the cars ghosted up the street and turned right to pull up behind the Divo’s car. Four men in combats jumped out.

“Hey, Mr Miller, good job you were here, eh? Who is this?” He indicated Bridie. “Didn’t you just ask where you were, lady?” Bridie smiled.

“A subterfuge, gentlemen. I had the information on the facilitator but didn’t know what to do with it, that is until I saw the Divos here so, yes, it’s a very good job that they had come along. Now I’m assuming you are going in on foot so if you all proceed back across this junction and round the back of the shops you will see a car there with my man inside it. I’ll phone now to tell him you are on the way and he can point you to where our bad guy is. Good luck..” Bridie almost saluted at the end of her well delivered commands and David smiled, for the first time in a while as the men did exactly as they had been told.

“Hmm, madam, you certainly seem to know what you are doing - have you had much experience of such things before?” Bridie tipped her head and grinned.

“Ah, you have no idea, lovely boy, no idea whatsoever!” She phoned Martin and alerted him to the company he was about to receive and told him what he should do then she closed the phone and waited with the others.

No words were spoken but each ear listened, keenly, for the least sound. And they didn’t have to wait long. There was a sudden shout and sounds of a scuffle and then everyone ducked as a gunshot rent the air. The Divos and the lady looked at each other but dared not move out of the shadows until they knew that Coyle had been overpowered. Prayers were offered up and quickly answered as the four men returned with their captive bound securely. Shouts of elation disturbed the neighbourhood still further but no one cared - it was over!

Just then a familiar frame could be seen at the corner and the Divos and Bridie watched the approach of the man they were here for. Urs ran to the gathered people, overjoyed to be reunited with his band-mates. He looked around them and clasped hands, arm, shoulders, to reassure himself that they really were flesh and blood. His face looked ready to split into two with happiness, that is until he let his eyes linger on the woman who was hanging back. His expression changed and he lunged forward.

“What the hell is she doing here?”


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Fri Dec 17, 2010 11:49 am

Chapter 26

Where seconds ago there was jubilation now the shadowy street corner was cloaked in silence. All of the players stopped as though frozen in time, all that is except Urs. He, too, was silent now but his eyes displayed much more eloquence that mere words. They poured out his outrage, injustice and, much worse, his hatred, to decimate Bridie O’Donnell with the ferocity of daggers. She was a woman used to having her way but she quailed under her idol’s terrible stare.

Slowly Bridie moved her hand from her mouth but only so that she could wrap both arms about her head in and effort to ward off the blows that were being inflicted by his gaze. This action seemed to break through the communal paralysis. David reached out a hand to stop her, his mouth forming a soft ‘oh‘. Ur’s reaction was lightning fast. He rounded on David, prepared to do battle.

“Why are you comforting her - don’t you know who this woman is? It was her family that held us captive, her son that decided to ransom us - hell I was even forced to sing at her birthday party … so don’t you dare feel sorry for her. She deserves everything she gets!” David turned compassionate eyes on his friend. He wanted, no needed, to make him feel better.

“Urs, buddy … it was she who told us that this guy was planning to kill you and she came here to save you however she could. Surely that means something.” But Urs was unwilling to let go of his anger. It was like a giant sponge expanding inside his chest, sopping up all the fear and uncertainty that he had been forced to deal with over the last few days.

“I don’t care! If she and her crooked family hadn’t snatched us in the first place then none of this would have happened and she wouldn’t need to come here and … save me!” The last words were spat out and Sebastien clasped Urs’s arm, feeling his pain, understanding his unwillingness to forgive.

“Urs, Urs … it is all over. Come away from here now. We should be celebrating; putting this behind us.” He pulled gently on the arm. “Come on, mon ami - let’s go and get drunk!” Urs swivelled his gaze to Sebastien. It was puzzled.

“Seb, I can’t go anywhere; I need to make sure the guilty are apprehended here. Dear God, you have no idea what we’ve been through … how many times we thought we were going to die.” Seb’s face blanched. He shook his head, knowing how right Urs was - he had no idea and he had to resist the urge to fall to his knees and plead that he never would know. But he didn’t fall. Instead he took a step towards Urs and gathered him into his arms.

At first Urs was a statue, still not comprehending but, when Carlos joined them, adding his own arms to the embrace, he faltered and it took those two strong pairs of arms to keep him upright. David joined the union then, the three men consoling their dear friend.

At last Urs wept … and, seeing this, so did his friends.

Long minutes passed but no one moved until Urs had let it out. It was a cathartic bite of time. It cleansed him and began his recovery.

Eventually he raised his head and smiled sheepishly.

“I think you can let go now, guys; I’m done!” It was Carlos, of course, who turned on the searchlight smile in response.

“Si Urs … you are done. Now I think we need to get you back to civilisation. I don’t know what you are wearing … but I’ve seen you in better!” This brought sniggers from the other two … and nods of agreement. Urs shrugged.

“Believe me, guys, you would not have preferred the clothes I was wearing earlier - after I had hidden in mouldy hay in them.” He waved his hand under his nose and grimaced and they got the picture. “But I must insist on getting to the bottom of whatever happened here. After all … do we know that she, “ he indicated Bridie with a dismissive gesture, “is telling the truth?” David saw that this was important to him so nodded his agreement.
“Okay pal … let’s see what we can find out.”

Both Bridie and Coyle had watched the preceding scenes with varying levels of interest. She, even in her own despair, allowed her heart to keen for Urs’s terrors and she berated herself for having had a hand in them. But he, he was a cold fish by choice, who saw any show of emotions as weakness. And something more, the interlude had given him time to think on his options and he had seen a glimmer of hope in Urs’s last comment. He coughed.

“Hey, if you fellas would like some truth then perhaps you should try asking me. You remember me, I’m the poor Joe who’s just been jumped on, bundled down a fire escape and dragged here in bindings. And for what … for the crime of coming here to try to stop that O’Donnell woman from killing you and the girl so that nothing could be traced back to her precious sons.”
If Bridie had been stunned into suffering silence by Urs’s condemnation and grief then her recovery now was all the more remarkable for its speed and ferocity.

“Why you lyin‘ heathen b*stard. My mother always said you should never trust you northerners; said if you were hung for being beautiful t’would be the only time you’d be found to be innocent. There’s blood on your hands, Coyle, I know how many you’ve killed - they don’t call you the facilitator for nothing. You make things happen alright … bad things! I knew you‘d try something so I had you tailed here. You‘re the one who wants to kill Urs and Emily, not me!”

Now why would I wat to do such a thing, you stupid old hag?” He turned to Urs. “Do you know me at all, young man?” Urs looked at him coldly.

“No, I don’t.” Coyle tilted his head, a supercilious smile lifting the corners of his mouth - but it was a smile that froze into a grimmace a moment later.

“Hmm, you may not, Urs, but I would recognise that voice anywhere!” It was Simon who spoke as he strode around the corner to join them and Coyle realised that the jig, as they say, was up!

Just then a small figure insinuated itself into the proceedings.

“Okay, would someone please tell me what the bloody hell is going on?” The wind swept the long auburn tresses around her face. She looked tired and dishevelled but the eyes, twin glorious blue orbs, sparked and demanded an answer. “Urs, what’s happening?” She marched towards him, surveying the massed company, friend and foe, with the same ‘don’t push me’ stare. At last the three Divos saw a smile, a genuine smile, wreath Urs’s features. He held out his hands to Emily and she grasped them both without hesitation.

“Guys, this is Emily, I don’t need to introduce you all as she already knows who you are.”

Questions, questions, in every head, even Simon, who’d had the chance to talk to Emily in the shop, now looked on at the touching gesture and wondered. But it could wait - they were safe and that was what mattered. Time enough later to find out the details.

Simon turned to his head of security.

“Jim, have the cars brought up here and let’s get everyone back to the hotel. I don’t know about the rest of you but I need a good stiff drink!”


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:33 am

Chapter 27

It quickly became obvious that Carlos, David and Sebastien were unwilling to let Urs out of their sight, even for a minute. The bonds that they had forged during the years of touring and recording together had been stretched to breaking point over the last few days and needed re-affirmation. So, when they insisted that Urs ride with them back to the city, Simon was forced to comply or risk having a mutiny on his hands … again! And he was more than a little amused at the way Urs also made sure that Emily was going nowhere without him. He watched as she was guided into the back seat to fit snugly between himself and Sebastien and, as he got into the car behind them, he mulled everything over. Was this a need for closeness brought on by the trials they had shared - or was it something more? He gave a tiny shrug in answer to his own question … only time would tell.

Seb was also very aware of the developments - he had no option. All through the journey Urs sat, Emily’s hand clasped in his and although they didn’t say much he would have to be blind to miss the unspoken signals. In short, his very French conclusion was, that his friend was in love!

As they exited the cars at the front of the hotel, security were still very much on the lookout for any left-over threat. They shepherded everyone into the safety of the foyer, one by one, each surrounded by armed men. This policy worked fine until it came time to get the main target out of the car.

“Okay, Mr Buhler, we’re ready for you now.”

Urs began to ease himself over the seat while pulling gently on Emily’s hand. The unfortunate guy who was waiting for him reached over to try to break this bond saying,

“No, Mr Buhler, just you; we’ll get the young lady next.” If Urs’s rage was terrible when directed at Bridie O’Donnell it was the cold fury of an assassin that caused the guard to falter now.

“Don’t touch her! If you think I am going to leave her alone in this car, you are crazy! She is coming with me or we will both stay here all night.” The hapless man radioed the situation to Jim who quickly joined them at the car. This, of course, was a familiar face and Urs relaxed a little but it was obvious that he wasn’t going to change his mind.

“We go together, Jim … right?” Jim pursed his lips then shrugged.

“Okay, Urs, you win but you do like to make my life difficult don’t you!” Urs’s shrug said ‘tough’ but he didn’t let the word reach his lips. He needed Jim’s expertise to keep Emily safe for this one last hurdle and then, finally, he would be able to relax.

As it was, Jim handled the inconvenience with aplomb - and the help of two of the hotel’s umbrellas, borrowed from the concierge. Four security men surrounded Urs and the same for Emily and the umbrellas added a screen as everyone moved in unison like a parade of guards. In no time they were inside the foyer where they were re-greeted by the other Divos. Now it was a simple job to get them all into the lift, up to their floor … and to absolute safety!

Of course Urs had no idea where he should go once he was there but by now Simon was also on the scene and his murmured “Follow me, Urs … and Emily,’ caused a route march of all the other interested parties. No one was going to be left out of events - everyone wanted to know everything!

Meanwhile, Bridie O’Donnell and Coyle were also still in the care of one of the security teams, at a safe house in the city. Simon had demanded that they be held rather than handed over to the police so that he could get to the bottom of things. He had to play it carefully though - he didn’t want them having any reason to wriggle out of any wrong-doing in which they may have been involved. But they would have to wait - first he had to get the facts from Urs and Emily … all of them.

He ordered food and refreshments and waited until everyone was settled before beginning the de-briefing. The relief in the room was palpable, at least among the side players but Urs, although affable on the surface, showed an undercurrent of unease. Emily, too, showed discomfort. Of course she wasn’t among familiar faces, which may have contributed to her demeanour but Simon worried that both of them may have a hard road to travel before they could put the whole sorry scenario behind them.

On the drive over he’d had the opportunity to discuss this need they were both displaying with Jim, who’d talked of his experiences with rescued prisoners of war at the time of the Gulf crisis. He referred to their behaviour as a sort of siege mentality and said that it was common for people who had been incarcerated together to rely on each other more than normal. Simon had listened then asked the pertinent question: ‘What if they came to mean more to one another than co-hostages or even friends?’
Jim had merely shrugged and said it may take some analysis to work it all out. As Simon now sat and watched them he was already hearing the explosion from Urs if he suggested this to him - this was going to be tricky.

As soon as there was a suitable lull in the conversation Simon cleared his throat and stood up. All eyes followed him; they were expecting this from him. He stopped in front of Urs and Emily, plonking himself down on the edge of the adjacent coffee table in the absence of a spare chair and he smiled. Urs looked at him candidly.

“Ah, is this the point where I have to tell you all, Simon - every grisly detail?” He looked to Emily who was doing her ‘rabbit in the headlights’ imitation again and he entwined his hand around hers still further. Simon didn’t answer, instead he preferred to shrug and spread his hands wide in a gesture that showed how eager he was … they all were … to know what had happened. Eventually he found what he thought might serve as the right words:

“Please, Urs, if you can.” Urs looked around at the assembled company and saw that each stare, each body posture, was saying the same thing - so he began ....

They laughed as a group when he told of the mutual dislike from the airport lounge and the plane. Even Emily eased a little, smiling and interjecting where she wanted a point to be embellished. There were guffaws when they heard of the two English crook’s ineptitude but a hush fell as soon as the man with the gun arrived. They saw a hint of bleakness in Urs’s eyes and the retreat of Emily, back into her shell.

There were gasps and shakes of the head when Urs told of his bold singing and the resultant meeting with the matriarch of the family and even the impromptu concert. They all knew of his pragmatic abilities where his work was concerned so they weren’t surprised at his adaptability. But the mood changed as soon as the ransom was mentioned. Everyone saw the rise in tension and fear and the captives’ revisited suffering and they felt the helplessness in tandem with them.

The next change, one of anger, came when he told how they were forced to leave the house at gunpoint, in the company of their original snatchers and how, after they crashed and escaped, they’d hid out while gunmen hunted them only inches from their hiding places. Here it all got too much for Emily and she buried her head into Urs’s shoulder so that he stopped speaking and nuzzled her hair gently. Concerned eyes watched then friends silently consulted each other. All held their breath.

Urs held up his hand.

“I think that’s enough, it‘s more or less everything and now we need some sleep.” It was a dismissal and Simon straightened and nodded.

“Yes, Urs, I think that’s a good idea. I have asked that they get a couple of rooms ready for you and that they make sure you both have everything you need until we can get you to the shops tomorrow.” Here he was interrupted in mid flow.

“A couple of rooms? No, Simon … we stay together, thank you!” His eyes brooked no argument….


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:15 pm

Chapter 28

The soft click of the lock engaging was the signal that Emily, silent to that point, had been waiting for. It meant that they were alone at last. She turned to face Urs and found him looking earnestly towards her, his back leaning against the closed door as though he was afraid that the world would intrude once more if he let his guard down. As that thought invaded her mind he closed the space between them then stopped without touching her. Emily reached out her hand and caught his fingers in hers. It was a gesture of tenderness that he reciprocated by lifting her hand to his lips and letting them play over the skin on her knuckles.

She smiled at the exquisite softness of the touch and locked eyes with him as, without stopping his caress, he raised his head. They were in a magical cocoon, safe after all that had befallen them and each was unwilling to break the spell. But there were things to be said so broken it had to be.

“Urs, why didn’t you ask me first? You were right, of course - I do want to be here with you … but why didn’t you ask me?” The honey coloured irises darkened to burnt toffee as she looked into them, searching for his answer. Then he closed his eyes, shrouding his fears. After a second that seemed to encompass all time they flickered open again. Now they showed vulnerability and her heart leapt with the need to soothe. “Oh no, don’t fret, my sweet. I only wish to know your thoughts; I’m not asking you to justify yourself.”

The cliché that states that the heart can be worn upon the sleeve is misleading. It is within the eyes that you will find such an offering and you possess wealth above rubies if you see that same gift reciprocated there. Urs saw that love emblazoned in the blue gaze and his very core rejoiced. And he smiled.

“Emily, my darling girl, to be honest … I didn’t think at all; I merely reacted as to a threat. I am afraid to let you out of my sight and, yes, I know that this has a lot to do with the stuff we’ve just been through together … but it’s more than that - much, much more. You feel that, too, don’t you? Please tell me that you do!” She could wait no longer. Her hands reached out to him, grabbing the lapels of the ill fitting jacket he still wore and pulling him to her. His hands closed in the hollow of her back, completing the jigsaw of their bodies; lining up curves and hollows - a perfect symmetry. She lifted her head to him and it was the most natural thing in the world for their lips to meet.

Was it seconds, or minutes; they did not know. Time is inadequate when assessing such moments, they need to be measured in warmth, and closeness and love. Eventually the spell was broken when Urs let his mouth trace a path from her lips to her forehead and Emily was left to snuggle in, her moist lips playing around the hollow of his throat.

Neither wanted to move but both felt the exhaustion that the last few days had caused. It was Urs who acted.

“Mmm, Emily, I could stay here forever but I need to get you to bed!” Emily swivelled her head up in time to see the mischief glinting and the grin spreading. She smacked his arm playfully then moved back a little, hands resting on hips.

“You know you are a very wicked man, Urs Buhler, very wicked indeed. Are you leading me on by any chance? Will I find my heart in pieces before I am finished with you?” Urs’s expression turned serious as he contemplated her phrasing.

“Finish with me … I don’t like the sound of that - I think I will have to make sure that doesn’t happen.” He moved close again and held her, finding her absence from his arms suddenly unbearable and he sighed before leading her to the bed where he gently pushed her into a sitting position and joined her. “I have things I feel I must say. I have to let them out. Is that alright?”

“Of course it is Urs. We’ve been through so much that I think we would be doomed if we couldn’t speak frankly together. I also have things to say … and things I want to hear, darling.” Urs inhaled deeply, revelling in the familiarity in her words and then he continued.

“I think I have to tell you, right from the outset, that I have very strong feelings for you, Emily. No woman has ever affected me the way you have, and all in the short time I‘ve known you.” Emily smiled softly but didn’t interrupt. “Now I know that everyone is going to say that it’s due to the ordeal we have shared and that I have to give us time and I think that is partly true but … I think it’s going to be hard! I want you completely, irrevocably - with every fibre of my being. I want to be your strength, your confidante, your lover. I want to be everything to you because … I love you!”

At last they were free, those magical words that we humans fear to use yet hope to hear. They danced about the thoughts of the two concerned as they had inhabited their dreams of late. Emily stretched out a solitary finger and placed it gently on Urs’s lips to signal that she had to speak now.

“Is that all, Urs? I have known that I loved you since that silly airport lounge but I thought you disliked me on sight so I let loose with my mouth as my coping mechanism - you have no doubt noticed that I do that a lot!” Urs grinned and nodded but stayed quiet as he sensed that there was more that she needed to say. He was right. “And if I hadn’t loved you from then I surely was lost when you devised the plot to make me your pretend girlfriend so that I would be treated as well as you. You became my knight - all you needed was the white charger. And your hero status only grew as we stumbled from one crisis to another. I can tell you something now … I didn’t want to get to New York. I wanted to stay lost with you forever so that I could indulge the fantasy that you acted the way you did because you cared for me. And now here you are, the most perfect man I have ever met, telling me that you love me. Well I love you too, Urs, everything about you, your looks, your talent, your bravado, your intelligence … everything!" Emily sighed and then lowered her head, over-awed at the import of what had just passed.

But Urs was having none of her sudden, if charming, shyness. He leaned in and dragged her into him, squeezing her against his chest. Then he found her mouth with his. No shy, lingering kiss was this but rather a joyous celebration; a fulfilment after all that had gone before.

Is it possible to laugh and kiss at the same time? I think our lovers would tell us yes and, when they broke apart, breathless, the joy could be felt in every ounce of their beings. They were in love - wonderful, exciting, glorious love.

There would be time enough, they knew, in their tomorrows, to work out the details. Tonight was for the closeness that such revelations as they had just jointly made, engendered. They stayed together for long minutes, kissing, caressing, enjoying the euphoria of their joint state then, slowly, they returned to the now. There was shyness and awkwardness and little touches that punctuated their soft murmurs and then an awareness of the needs of the moment. And Urs realised that some things still had to be said.

“Erm, Emily, I think I need to be frank with you, my love. As I said I want you - God how I want you. I have never wanted a woman so much. I ache for you … but … I think, if it’s okay with you, that I would like to take a little time over the … er …. more physical aspects of our relationship.” He waited now, searching her face for any sign that she was unhappy with his request. But Emily said nothing, preferring to just tilt her head and wait for his explanation. So he charged on, needing to make her understand his reasoning. “You must think I’m mad, hellfire, I think I’m mad,” here he paused and couldn’t stop his eyes from roving over her luscious body, “but, because I have never felt like this before I want to make sure I get everything right. I want to spend a little time with you without the threat of death looming over us. I want us to have some normal time to do normal things and then move, er … forward at the right time. So … how do you feel about this?” Emily wasn’t quite sure how she felt. Definitely there was a tinge of disappointment there, how could there not be, here in the arms of this beautiful man but she had to admit that his logic was indisputable so she told him this.

“I understand Urs and I think you are right. Saying that, I wish you weren’t as I have the same longings you have!” She smiled at him and he reciprocated hesitantly. “So, shall we agree to cuddles for tonight … or is that too much of a temptation?” Now Urs laughed openly and crushed her to him again.

“Lord, no wonder I love you, woman! Yes, it may be too much temptation but there is no way I am denying myself that pleasure too. I want to fall asleep in your arms and then awake to your lips.”
“Goodness, how poetic - and not exactly what I was thinking. I could say something very rude now, If I dared but I won’t; I wouldn’t want us to start off on the wrong foot.” She was bear-hugged again and then grinned at, wickedly.

“You are a naughty girl … and I definitely think I am going to love that about you … I like bad girls!” Emily batted her eyelashes provocatively then traced a finger down his chest, causing him to inhale sharply. Her resultant smile was a promise.

“Bad girl it is then Urs … for you … anything!” He lunged for her then, wanting to show his bad boy capabilities but she was quicksilver, darting away from him and into the bathroom, giggling as she went. Urs lay back on the bed and laughed out loud … it was going to be some ride, this relationship … he couldn’t wait!


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Wed Dec 29, 2010 9:08 pm

Chapter 29

As Simon ascended the steps to the house he barely noticed it’s unassuming brownstone façade in a street of similar residences. The neighbourhood had seen better days but these facts were decidedly unimportant to the occupants within who awaited his arrival. The door opened without the necessity of his knock and he hurried inside. It was time to get a few things straight.

In the hallway he was met by Jim, his head of security and after a hurried conversation he was pointed towards one of two guarded doors. The armed man bent to unlock the door and then he accompanied his boss into the room. Inside the walls were an un-inspiring shade of cream. The dirt of years was ingrained into the crevices and there were unsightly marks where water had invaded the interior times without number. It was a cheerless, sparsely furnished hovel and the woman primly seated on a straight back chair in its centre was clearly less than pleased to be there but she still knew that caution would be necessary.

“Well it’s about time, Mr Cowell. I am not used to being treated like this. I’ve done nothing wrong, in fact I went out of my way to help.” Simon held up his hand to stop her flow. He didn’t have much time and he knew exactly what he wanted to ask her.

“Yes, okay, Mrs O’Donnell, I get it. You’re a misguided philanthropist who was only out to protect Urs from some hidden fiend. But let me tell you something … Coyle’s wasn’t the only voice I recognised. I happen to be very good at that and I know, therefore that it was you who rang me yesterday. So I have this question, Madam … Why didn’t you ring me when you knew what Coyle was up to rather than trying to save the day yourself?” He sat back in the only other chair in the room and studied her with baleful eyes, only raising an eyebrow when she shook her head dismissively.

“I tried to as soon as I had more than a hunch to go on but they told me you had already left the hotel so, putting the facts together, I knew that something was afoot. I’d had my man watching Coyle all day as I know what a ruthless swine he is so, when I heard he was on the move, I decided to … oh I don’t know … try to make amends. See … I couldn’t just sit there and risk him killing them, I couldn’t - even if it would have also left my family in the clear.” She stared back at Simon and he saw no subterfuge and, more importantly, he realised that her story made absolute sense.

Simon lowered his head. He knew that even if he did believe her it wouldn’t mean that Urs would; but that was a battle for another day.

“Alright Mrs O’Donnell, I think I believe you. Now I am going next door to hear Coyle’s story and then we can decide what happens next.”

“What happens next? What else needs to happen? You simply let me go home and we can all get on with our lives, pretending all of this never happened.” Simon had risen to leave but stopped at her words.

“Are you sure of that? Think for a moment … do you really think that Urs will let it all go away? No, what we have to do now is present him with a conclusion that will give him closure - otherwise he will never be happy until you and your family are all behind bars! I know how implacable he can be.” Bridie paled, remembering his reaction to her presence earlier and she demurred to Simon, hoping only that she would never have to repeat that experience as long as she lived.

Back out in the corridor, Simon conferred with Jim, who had been listening to the conversation via a com-link and both agreed that her account of events was very plausible. He asked him, then, to make sure that she was moved to a more comfortable room before turning his mind to the second part of his task. It was Coyle’s turn. Simon squared his shoulders. He had a distinctly bad feeling about this fellow.

He found him, as he had found Mrs O’Donnell, sat in the centre of the room - but this was where the similarities ended. He was leaning back in the chair, legs extended, ankles crossed. His hands were clasped, nonchalantly, behind his head. This was a confidant man; a man who had used the time to re-group his faculties - get ready for battle. But Simon was expecting this. He was fully aware that he wouldn’t have earned the name of the facilitator by being hesitant or unsure. Now, as he faced him he was almost smiling … he liked cat and mouse - he had been under-estimated before.

“At last, Mr Cowell! I trust that you are here to end this highly illegal incarceration I’ve been forced to endure. I have to tell you that I was due at a sportsman’s dinner in the city tonight and people will be wondering where I am … important people.” The threat was subtle but wasted on a man of Cowell’s standing.

“I’m sure those important people will shun you for the worm you are when they discover the kind of evil business in which you’ve been involved. My security chief has been conducting investigations of his own and he’s found your mark in various ugly dealings. You’re finished Coyle. Your family will drop you like a stone because they won’t want to be tainted by your crimes and you might not like to hear this but, since my man has been talking to people, there have been one or two baying for your blood. You’ve upset as many important people, some of them non too pleasant themselves, as you want to claim as friends.” Coyle said nothing but his gaze slid towards the floor. He knew the truth of Simon’s words and now he needed to re-evaluate once again.

Abruptly, he lifted his head, all defiance gone.

“So what happens now? What can I salvage from this?” Simon’s look was quizzical.

“Salvage … do you take me for a fool? You tried to sell then kill one of the most decent men it has been my privilege to know and you expect me to show you mercy now? I don’t do mercy, not for lowlife scum like you. But I will give you a little tip. Tell the police, who will be here any minute incidentally, the complete truth about this business and then tell them everything else and hope for the witness protection program.” The last words were hurled over his shoulder as he exited the room.

He went back to Jim, the vein pumping in his neck, showing his fury.

“Get the police in to pick him up and, once he is gone, I’d like you to contact Paddy O’Donnell Get him to come here - I think it’s time we had a chat ….”


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Sun Jan 02, 2011 8:27 pm

Chapter 30

Simon stayed well out of the way when the police came to arrest Coyle, figuring it was better to let his head of security deal with the official business. He had to move on now and that meant developing a strategy to deal with the O’Donnells. He knew he would have to tread carefully. He had held Bridie prisoner for hours and surely this would have irked her son, who, he had learned, was a very dangerous and powerful man. He checked on Mrs O’Donnell once more to make sure his orders had been followed. She was now in a comfortable room with bathroom facilities and she had been provided with tea and sandwiches so she looked a great deal more settled.

When Paddy O’Donnell finally arrived, Simon heard him before he set eyes on him and he stood, pushed back his shoulders and straightened his tie as he listened to his progress through the house. The knock on the door was a courtesy and Jim showed Paddy into the room immediately. The time for procrastinating was over and Paddy got straight to the point.

“Are you the Brit who’s been holding my mammy prisoner all evening? You’d better have a damn good reason, pal or I am going to make your life very uncomfortable.” Paddy’s eyes blazed his annoyance and Jim, fearing a sudden attack, stayed so close to the two men that he could have comfortably grasped both men’s shoulders at the same time. Other men had been ordered to follow into the room so Simon wasn’t unduly afraid of a physical attack but he was reassured by his security chief’s presence. He inhaled deeply; it was time for him to take control.

“Will you calm down, Mr O’Donnell, your mother is absolutely fine and I will take you to her soon but first we have to discuss this entire, stupid business. I don’t know if you realise it but you and your whole family could be facing prison sentences as it stands right now. Urs isn’t in a forgiving mood after you held him for ransom so I suggest you get off your high horse and talk to me properly.” While Paddy’s provocative stance didn’t soften, he realised that he had to consider this man’s words so he threw himself down on a convenient armchair and looked defiantly at Simon.

“Okay, I’m listening … what do we need to discuss?”

The time rushed by as Simon informed Paddy of what had happened earlier culminating with Coyle‘s arrest. Paddy saw the dangers of the situation immediately. Of course Coyle would try his best to implicate the family but he had no proof - nothing had been written down so that should be okay but if the singer and the girl wanted their revenge there would be nothing that would keep them out of jail. It was only when Simon went on to tell Paddy of his mother’s tip off about the escape and help in the capture of Coyle that it finally dawned on him that Cowell didn’t really want this to end badly.

The two men sat in silence, each mulling over the possibilities. At last Paddy cleared his throat and looked into Simon’s face without the anger he had been displaying since his arrival.

“So, Mr Cowell, if I understand you right, you are saying that the main problem is going to be the singer. Can’t you simply tell him to do as he’s told?” Simon laughed.

“You obviously didn’t get to know him too well while he was your … er … guest, did you? Urs would tell me, in no uncertain words, where I could stick an idea like that. I don’t have the luxury of pointing a gun at him, remember.”

“Perhaps you should try it!”

“It wouldn’t work … he’s a better shot than I could ever be.” Paddy raised his brows in surprise.

“Handy with a gun, eh - he didn’t look the type.”

“Well he’s Swiss and apparently they almost all are good with guns! But what we need to discuss now is how we can get him to realise that your heart wasn’t really in this kidnap malarkey. I think we should join your mother now and the three of us may be able to come up with something.”

Once the three were ensconced in the same room, greetings and hugs having been exchanged between mother and son, they got down to the problem in hand. Bridie’s was delighted that Simon was honouring his promise and trying to keep her family out of jail. Her face coloured with shame, though, when Simon reminded them of Urs’s denunciation of her but then she brightened when he mentioned the need to fully acquaint him with all of the facts. Urs was a fair man, after all, Simon had added. After an hour a plan had been struck to bring the two parties together the following day for a show-down. It would be a make or break occasion. Paddy took his mother home with a firm arrangement to meet Simon in the morning. If doubts had surfaced in Simon’s mind as to whether he would ever see them again, they were quickly dashed when Bridie proclaimed that she would gain Urs’s forgiveness or die trying!

*****

The sun was high in the sky before there was any movement in the huge bed that dominated the well appointed room. Emily was the first to stir. She opened a lazy eye, quickly closed it again then opened both eyes wide before murmuring:

“So it wasn’t a dream … wow!”

She stayed a moment or two, simply looking at the face on the other pillow. She observed the cheekbones, the riot of curls lying, halo-like about his face, the soft, full lips. It would be so tempting to lean over and claim her first kiss of the morning but her need for the facilities was pressing and, like all people new to a relationship, she wished to present him with a minty fresh mouth. She slithered backwards, hardly disturbing the bed covers or Urs and she tiptoed to the bathroom.

Urs felt movement but was unwilling to open his eyes. His dream, soft, sensual, was still etched on his senses and he allowed it to envelope him for a few more precious moments until it slowly gave way to wakefulness. The bright light penetrated his eyelids causing him to realising that he had slept late. He threw the covers aside, stood and stretched his upper body then sidled slowly round to the bathroom. He turned the door handle but found it locked. His sleep brain couldn’t process this information so he chose force to solve his problem, turning the knob irritably and slapping his hand on the door.

“Hang on Urs … I won’t be a minute … just making myself presentable, my love.” She let the familiar greeting tumble off her tongue - it felt good. Urs let go as though the door knob had suddenly been charged with an electric current. His eyes were open wide now, then he grinned.

“It wasn’t a dream!”

He turned to the mirror that was placed fortuitously alongside him and he raked his fingers through his hair in an effort to force it into some semblance of neatness but that was all he had time for before Emily appeared in the doorway, radiant, sweet smelling - and toothpaste fresh! It would have been so easy to catch her up in an embrace … and oh so tempting but he wanted to be a tad more presentable himself so instead he manoeuvred around her, grinning, ‘til he was the one inside the bathroom’s confines.

“Won’t be a minute, gorgeous.” She laughed and thought to reply but the closing door decided her against it. Instead she climbed onto the bed and rubbed her hand over the still warm indent that had been left by his body and she smiled.

When he returned, Urs leapt onto the bed and sat cross-legged across from Emily.

“So, beautiful Emily, what would you like to do today? The world is our oyster.” Emily clapped her hands together.

“Sounds lovely! I think I want to do some touristy stuff - you know … Empire State, Liberty island, Central park … just like ordinary people do.” Urs caught her infectious glee but also remembered the reality.

“That sounds wonderful … except that Simon says we have to take the security team with us everywhere. He doesn’t think there is any threat but the fans will still be on the lookout for us. And then there’s the press conference they’ve arranged for us this afternoon - but then our time should be our own. Maybe we should rent a car and get out of town for a few hours. “ Emily’s face turned down into a frown and she pouted prettily.

“Oh dear, are these the pressures of fame already? Maybe we should just stay in the hotel and hide from everyone - but we’ve already done enough hiding to last a lifetime. I’ll do whatever you say, Urs … as long as I’m with you I don’t care.” Urs gathered her into his arms and pressed his lips against her temple.

I wish I could take you away to my mountains and then we could ride the empty roads in peace. - I will one day!”

“I can’t wait!” Emily lifted her face to his and he claimed her mouth.

They were interrupted by a knock on the door and, reluctantly, Urs left her embrace.

“Hello Mr Buhler, I have yours and the young lady’s luggage and Mr Cowell says he would be very grateful if you could call in to see him as soon as you are ready.” The burly man indicated his and Emily’s cases, that he had last seen in the boot of the crashed car. He turned to Emily who has got off the bed and padded up behind him.

“Look at this, Em - at least we don’t have to go out shopping now - well not unless you want to.” He thanked the security guard and dragged the bags into the room. Emily cocked her head.

“I wonder how they got them back so quickly. They must have found the car …or the O’Donnells.”

“Hmm … I certainly hope it’s the latter. I won’t be happy until I see those scum jailed.” Emily nodded her head.

“Me too!” She took her bag from Urs then turned to him as something occurred to her. “I wonder what Simon wants? Maybe he wants to tell us that he’s caught the lot of them - wouldn’t that be fun?” Urs Grimaced and looked into the distance.

“Yes, very nice … and I hope he gives me ten minutes with Paddy!” He flexed is fingers then balled them into fists and Emily smiled as she caught up with his imagination.

“Oh yes … that would be very, very nice!”


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Tue Jan 04, 2011 7:06 pm

Chapter 31

Simon’s personal assistant showed Urs and Emily into his suite and offered them refreshments while they waited for him to join them. They had come straight from breakfast so declined all except some of the delicious fresh coffee that was percolating merrily on the table in front of them. Simon took his ancient percolator, as well as his own blend of coffee beans and grinder, everywhere with him as he said that together they made the best coffee possible and Urs had to agree. For her part, Emily closed her eyes as the pungent aroma filled her nostrils then she sipped and sighed; she was a coffee addict in coffee heaven!

Simon, still in his bedroom, watched the newcomers through the half-open door. He was gathering his thoughts, knowing that if he handled these next few minutes badly, Urs would explode. He had no idea how Emily would act, she was an unknown quantity but he knew his friend well. Behind Urs’s tightly controlled and professional façade there roared a man of intense passions. He loved wholeheartedly and hated with equal strength. Simon knew he would have to make Urs see the sense of what he was about to propose if he was to have any chance of having him accept it.

The sound of Simon’s nervous little cough preceded him into the lounge area of the suite. Urs turned sharply to look at him. He knew that little cough well - it usually meant that he was going to tell someone something they wouldn’t like. He dropped his head to one side, pursed his lips … and waited.

“Good morning Urs, Emily. I trust you had a good night’s sleep last night. Was the room to your liking? I’m arranging to have you moved into a suite today, now that one has become available.” Emily gushed a hurried thank you; she still didn’t know quite how to treat a powerful man like Simon but Urs simply nodded courteously towards his boss. Simon knew immediately that Urs, alert as always, was on to him so he inhaled deeply and decided to get on with it.

“Right, you two, I’ve asked you here to discuss what is going to happen now. As you know I’ve called a press conference for this afternoon so that the fans can see that you really are alive and well, Urs and we would love you to be there also, Emily. I have spoken to the head of your publishing house and in addition to being delighted to know that you are alive and well, he thinks it would be a good idea for you to speak to the cameras. He also mumbled something about the benefits of good publicity and said he was sure you would understand.” Simon looked directly at the young lady by Urs’s side, wondering how she would take this news but Emily merely laughed disparagingly.

“Yes, that’s Eddie for you. Did he sound slightly disappointed that I was still in the land of the living? I’m sure he would have preferred the publicity of a nice big, visual funeral, complete with weeping and wailing.” Urs turned to her, flabbergasted. He had little experience of the business world so found it hard to believe that anyone could really be so callous. She smiled at him and clasped his hand tightly. “Oh, don’t worry, my love, he’s an old rascal but perhaps I’m overstating his wiliness. He loves me really.” Urs relaxed his body and smiled at her.

“Thank goodness for that, otherwise I would have to add him to my ‘must kill’ list … right after the O’Donnells.” As the words died on his lips he turned to Simon. “Speaking of flesh peddlers, what has been decided about the O’Donnells, Simon? Have you put the police on their nasty little tails yet?” Simon sat back and scratched ponderously at the back of his head.
“As a matter of fact, Urs and Emily, that is the main thing I want to talk about with you. We have a bit of a problem, you see because it was Mrs O’Donnell who told me you had escaped after the car crash. It was she who suggested I alerted the fans to your plight and we now know, unequivocally, that she really did come to the house last night to save you from Coyle, whatever the cost. He is the real aggressor here and he is already in the hands of the police. It’s an open and shut case and hell will freeze before he sees the light of day again.”

There was no explosion - but a deadly calm filled Urs’s gaze and he rose from the couch.

“You want us to forget all about them, don’t you - forget the guns pointed at us, forget the imprisonment - forget the feeling of not knowing if you would be alive another day, another hour … another second! Well you can do the forgetting now, Simon - forget that you ever so much as thought of this. I will never agree to it … never!”

Urs turned to Emily and held his hand out to her.

“Come on Emily, it’s time we left. I think we need to get to a police station.” Emily rose without a word and together they walked towards the door. Simon knew he had wounded his friend and the last thing he wanted was for him to leave with anger in his heart.

“Aww, come on, Urs - there’s no need to walk out; surely we can talk about anything that upsets us. Urs spun on his heel.

“That was before I … we, were held hostage. Imagine how you would feel if that had happened to you Simon … just imagine that if you can.”

Then they were gone and Simon lowered his head in shame. He had hurt the feelings of a man whose friendship he valued more than he would care to admit. What was he doing, he asked himself - why should he care if these people ended up in jail? Urs was more important. He cursed himself for a fool and rushed through the still open door and to the elevators. He had to catch Urs and Emily, tell them he was behind them one hundred percent. They were mere minutes ahead of him but he chafed at the slowness of the elevator’s descent then leapt from the lift as the doors opened onto the lobby. He saw Urs and Emily exiting the hotel, the sunlight glinting on her flowing chestnut hair and he sprinted, careless of the other hotel users that were in his way.

He emerged through the doors to find a scene apparently frozen in time.
Paddy and Bridie O’Donnell had just alighted from a sleek sedan outside the hotel. They had come for the meeting he had arranged - the one that now would never take place. There were perhaps twenty metres from the spot where Emily, frozen with fear and Urs reacting to this, was snarling at them. Simon made to intervene but then the scene was fractured by the appearance of a tall blonde woman. She paid no attention to the O’Donnells - her gaze was fixed on Urs and Emily. But Bridie saw her and, dropping her handbag, she sprinted towards where Urs and Emily stood. Urs perceived mammy as a threat and stepped forward to prevent her progress but she evaded him. Then he turned to Emily - and only now did he see the gun in the hand of the blonde woman.

Time stopped. All sound was filtered out except for the woman’s screamed words.

“You have taken my man away from me so I’m gonna take your woman.” She levelled the gun at Emily’s chest and the gunshot drowned out everything else … even Bridie O’Donnell’s cry as the bullet was intercepted and thudded into her torso.


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Wed Jan 05, 2011 3:16 am

Oh no, Birdie's shot...is she still alive? More soon...
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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:20 pm

Chapter 32

All was eerie quiet, all was uproar. People running, people screaming, people frozen with fear, people stunned into silence … madness!

Jim, with the instincts that had made him so good at his job, had followed Simon in his pursuit of Urs. He was, perhaps, the man most used to such scenes so he alone now sped into action. He launched himself past Simon and into the woman with the gun. She stood there transfixed by what she had done and he easily disarmed her. Then and only then he turned to survey the damage. The crimson stain spreading across Bridie O’Donnell’s upper chest was not good. Jim ensured the culprit was being held then, with the expertise of long practice, he checked Bridie’s condition then ripped a strip off his own shirt and wadded it against her wound. Paddy had joined him on the ground at his mother’s side but he was incomprehensible in his panic so Jim grabbed gruffly at his jacket and shook him hard.

“I need you thinking, Mr O’Donnell. You need to hold this dressing firmly against your mother’s wound.” Finally Paddy saw what he had to do and, still sobbing, he cradled his mother’s head in one arm while applying the pressure bandage with the other hand.

Jim now moved on to the rest of the interested parties. He knew that only one shot had been fired so he was already sure that there were no other major casualties but he also knew that shock at such a traumatic incident could be a serious problem. He looked to Urs who seemed fine but was immediately concerned for Emily. She wasn’t so fine - eyes open wide, hands fluttering in mid air, staring at the injured woman and seemingly struggling to speak. He gestured to Urs to take her back inside the hotel but to his surprise, when Urs tried to comply, she refused point blank. And she found her voice.

“We have to make sure she’s okay … she saved my life!” She turned to Urs. “She saved my life, Urs, didn’t you see?” Urs turned and saw as though for the first time where the injured woman lay prone on the ground.

“Did she? I thought her being hit was an accident. I mean, I know that bloody woman fired and that she wanted to shoot you … dear God … she wanted to kill you … why you … why not me?” He looked to the shooter who had raised her head at his words. She sneered.

“Coyle was my man. He was going to marry me, take me away from the streets but now he’ll die in prison. And it’s all your fault, you bastard. I was going to kill you but then, when I saw how you were looking at your woman as you came through the door, I could tell that you loved her so I decided to do the thing that would hurt you the most.” She looked down at Bridie. “And it weren’t no accident that it was her who took the bullet. She looked right at me and recognised me then threw herself in front of the girl when she heard what I said - stupid bitch!”

Time again became a blur as Urs launched himself at his tormentor but he was beaten to her by the squat form of Paddy, rising like a phoenix from the ashes of his anguish and hurling himself so that he bowled the woman over onto the floor. His hands were around her throat as he landed and only the strong arms of Jim prevented him from throttling the life out of her. He screamed incoherent threats and obscenities as he was prevented from completing his goal and then he was gently directed back to his mother by Simon.

“Your mother needs you now, Mr O’Donnell - concentrate on her. That scum will get what’s coming to her, I will personally see to it.” The grim look on Simon’s face was something that Paddy recognised - a determined man who knew how to get what he wanted and so he collapsed back down beside his mammy and made soothing noises to her unconscious form as he returned his attention to the makeshift dressing.

The sound of sirens preceded the emergency services vehicles along the road so that everyone grudgingly cleared a path as the first police car screeched to a halt in front of the hotel. An ambulance followed immediately and Bridie was assessed and then carefully moved into its rear for her transport to the hospital. The crew were professional but couldn’t keep the concerned looks from their faces and Paddy, his hand clamped to his mouth, scurried along behind them, the tears now flowing freely once more.

At last Emily allowed Urs to lead her back into the hotel and up to their floor where, by silent agreement, they all filed into Simon’s suite. The other three Divos were already waiting in the corridor having been alerted by members of the security team. They ran to Urs and Emily, eyes scanning them. Even though they had been told that they were uninjured they needed to see for themselves!

Urs and Emily were ushered to a couch then given generous glasses of brandy to calm their nerves and, as they sipped silently, everyone else talked, babbled, questioned at once. Eventually Simon restored order, insisting that people sit down and shut up or he would throw them out. He knew that peace was needed so that everyone could have their fears calmed, especially the two most involved.

Urs watched everything but said nothing except to murmur quiet endearments to Emily. He stroked her cheek and rubbed gently at the back of her hand and slowly he saw her spirit return. Only then could he address his own demons … what would he have done if she had been stolen from him? Without warning he clutched her to him and the room was silenced but Urs was suddenly unaware of everything else.

“My darling girl, I am never going to let you leave my side again. I can’t lose you; life would be unimaginable without you. I love you.” He kissed her gently then rested his forehead against hers. For long moments no thought was given to others’ opinions but eventually reality intruded and he released her then turned calm yet defiant eyes back to the room. Awareness was in his grasp once more and he announced to all who now watched him so carefully:

“I love Emily. You will all have to get used to this from now on because she is always going to be with me and if that isn’t possible and she has to go elsewhere then I will go too. We’d talked about our feelings last night and had decided to give ourselves some time - let things develop naturally but I know, now more than ever, that time will make no difference to the way I feel about her.” His gaze slid along the assembly of his friends and he saw only love and warmth offered back to him so he relaxed back into the couch, nodded his head and then gulped what was left of his brandy. Emily slipped her hand into his and smiled at him then looked around the room to see that his friends had now become her friends too.

A knock at the door interrupted the silence and Simon’s assistant opened it then allowed Jim into the room. He brought news of detectives waiting in the hallway to interview those concerned and so David, Sebastien and Carlos and indeed, any others there that weren’t required to make statements, all filed out to hold their inquest on the events in private.

By the time official business was done to the satisfaction of the law enforcement officers the afternoon sun was high in the heavens. Food and any other comforts had been brought for all who may need them and the atmosphere was finally starting to lose its tension. Conversation was quiet, unhurried and contemplative and people began to feel free to look at the wider picture.

Emily watched the quiet interaction between her man and his friends. The Divos had returned as soon as they were able and now they showed their love for Urs with back patting, firm handshakes and downright hugs. And Emily was included in this out-pouring of caring - she was one of their select group now and they took pains to let her know it. But there was a conversation she needed to have with Urs away from the eyes of others. She tugged softly on his arm and he smiled then cocked his head to one side expectantly.

“Urs, can we talk please, I have something I really want to discuss with you?”

“Of course we can talk, my love - what’s the matter?” Emily looked at him earnestly before she continued.

“Well I have been thinking about how our day started - when Simon asked us to meet with the O’Donnells. I was as angry as you at the suggestion, believe me, but now I would like to find out if mammy is alright … could we do that?” Urs raised her hand to his lips before he answered.

“Of course we can do that, darling. Shall I get Simon’s assistant to call the hospital?”

“No Urs … I’d like to go there with you … I want to see her … I want to see both of them.”
.

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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Wed Jan 12, 2011 1:24 pm

Chapter 33

When Simon got wind of their intentions he blustered his objections all to no avail in the face of Emily’s and therefore Urs’s determination. He was forced to be content with the addition of Jim and a further member of the security team, to the outing and, in truth, Urs was glad to have them along. If there’d been one deranged woman lying in wait for them then who was to say that there weren’t more!

Alone in the back of the vehicle they were finally able to be together without sharing every word and gesture with the attentive throng that, apart from when they were sleeping, seemed to gather wherever they were. For Emily this attention was new and not a little intrusive so she revelled now in the short interlude she had with her man.

Snuggling into his shoulder she closed her eyes in blissful thought only to catch her breath when she felt soft lips against hers. She raised her face and parted her lips, letting the kiss deepen. Urs’s response was instantaneous. He pulled her further into his embrace and gave full reign to the passion that had quickly flamed within him. He felt her gentle fingers sliding over his chest to the bare skin where his top shirt buttons were undone and he wished fervently that they were somewhere else.

Emily, for her part, was lost in time and place. She caressed the smattering of coarse hair there then let her fingers continue to explore upwards to his throat where she felt the hypnotic rhythm of his carotid pulse. Her hand crept into the curls tucked behind his ear and she wound them around her fingers then massaged his scalp at the base of his hairline. The effect was an erotic time bomb for Urs and he pulled away to look at her.

“Emily, I am going to have to order them to turn around and head back to the hotel if you’re not careful. I am flesh and blood, you know, and I can stand only so much provocation. I want you so much, my darling … I can’t tell you … but we agreed to wait and I will keep to that until you are ready to say otherwise.” His words were solemn and demanded a serious reply but to his consternation Emily giggled quietly.

“I didn’t ask you to wait! It was your idea and I agreed because I thought it was what you expected but, to be honest, I really wanted to jump your bones last night!” She giggled again, shocked at her bravado but enjoying the emotions she saw playing across Urs’s delicious features.

“My God, woman … you are going to have a whole lifetime in which to drive me mad like this aren’t you - I don’t have a prayer, do I?” He paused and enjoyed the moment for a few seconds whilst letting his quick mind provide him with at least a little of the higher ground. Then he lifted her chin with a single finger so that she was looking directly at him and his eyes smouldered as he dropped his voice to a husky whisper. “Okay, my dear, sweet but naughty girl … do you still want to go to the hospital of do you want to turn back so that you can … get acquainted with my, er … bones?” He tilted his head, turning the question into an invitation.

Laughter danced in the cornflower pools of Emily’s eyes as she considered her reply.

“Oh my, not fair - you’re sneaky!” She straightened so she could appear more business-like. “Right, thank you so much for your very tempting offer but I think we both know we have to make this visit - there’s a lot that needs to be resolved.” Urs looked at her quizzically and her tone changed as she was reminded of the importance of the task. “I think we owe Mrs O’Donnell a lot, Urs. She actually put her own life on the line for me!” Urs ran his hand across his face as he was forced to remember but then he nodded his head.

“Yes, you’re right, we must go to her and thank her.”

“Yes, thank her but maybe we have to start forgiving too. We have to remember that she was totally unaware of the real reason we were at that house in the first place. And do you remember when she came back ranting about stories she had been told and we were whisked away before she could see us - I really believe that she would have had us freed then if she had found us!” Emily waited now, anxious to give him time to see reason. She knew he was an honourable man - it was one of the things she loved most about him but he was also a stubborn man … a man capable of carrying grudges.

Urs looked into her eyes and saw the compassion there and he found yet another quality to love in Emily. He smiled at her and kissed the tip of her nose.

“You’re right, of course. What kind of people would we be if we couldn’t recognise her sacrifice and then be honest in our estimation of her part in the kidnap.” It was his turn to pause now. This frankness of thought was throwing up a new dilemma. “But I don’t know how I feel about Paddy and the rest of them. I’ll be honest, I still want them to pay somehow … but I can see that it was a comedy of errors that brought us to their door. So … what should we do about them?”

“I don’t know, Urs … let’s decide after we have talked to them.” It was the last word on the subject as the hospital entrance suddenly loomed out of the twilight and the people carrier glided to a halt. Each of our lovers inhaled deeply then they kissed once more before exiting the transport.

The hospital corridors were the usual mix of white sterility and order surrounding bustling chaos. Jim had stated their business at the reception desk and they were escorted by a uniformed police officer to the surgical unit and the waiting room where Paddy and his brother waited for news. They looked up at the new arrivals and both men were instantly on their guard. Urs stepped forward and nodded curtly.

“Hello! Please don’t be alarmed by our presence but we had to know how your mother was - she saved Emily and for that I can never thank her enough so, whatever else has passed between us, we wanted to be here for her.” Paddy had risen and stepped to the fore, his usual position and he was ready for battle but he looked non-plussed by Urs’s forthright statement.

“Right, well … that’s very good of you - I’m glad you both came.” He looked from Urs’s stern face to Emily’s that was now questioning silently so he addressed his next comment to her. “I’m afraid we can’t tell you much though. Mammy’s in surgery. The bullet missed her heart by millimetres, thank the good Lord but it shattered a rib which splintered badly and punctured her lung. She lost a lot of blood and, as she isn’t getting any younger, this is what they are most worried about. We have to wait and see how she gets on with the repair surgery and then they say it will be the next 24 hours that will matter.” As he finished he slumped back next to his brother, into his chair, as if the effort of delivering the information had drained his strength and spirit.

Emily, with the spontaneity of a compassionate heart, moved quickly to sit beside him and took his hand in hers.

“Thank you, Mr O’Donnell. Would it be okay if we waited with you, for a while at least and could we arrange for some refreshments - you must be exhausted?” Paddy looked into the kind eyes and felt the urge to cry once more. He knew he had no right to expect kindness from this young woman after what he had been a party to putting her through yet here she was. He felt ashamed.

When it became obvious that he was too overcome by the emotion of the moment to answer, Urs took control of the necessary provisions then he sat on the other side of Emily so that he could hold her other hand - and together they waited!


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Sat Jan 15, 2011 3:37 pm

Chapter 34

The vigil was hard and the group bore the strain with, as can easily be imagined, varying degrees of severity. Urs was quiet, considering everything. Now that he had acknowledged Bridie’s sacrifice it was important to him that she was restored to health but, if he was forced to honesty, he would have admitted that it was the impact of any bad news on Emily that worried him most. Emily was steadfast in her belief that all would be well. She refused to countenance any other possibility as the thought of someone dying so that she might live would have placed a burden on her soul that she would struggled to carry. Paddy and Sean were of course united in their fear of what the night may bring but they displayed their fears in different ways. Paddy was gruff with everyone except Emily while Sean dithered and wrung his hands, barely hanging onto his equilibrium.

It was a long night!

At some point, nobody was quite sure when, the surgeon had come to brief them. The surgery had gone well but the splintered rib had done a lot of damage and Bridie’s recovery was going to depend on her will to fight. Paddy, on hearing this, had raised his chin with some of his old defiance.

“My mammy has fight, doctor, don’t you worry about that - she’s an O’Donnell! We’re not known as the fighting O’Donnells for nothing … we don’t give up easily!”

As the doctor left Paddy turned his attention to the only member of his family that he feared might give up.

“Ah Sean, will you stop blubbering for God’s sake; it isn’t doing mammy or anyone else, any good. Here,” he shoved a pile of bills in his hand, “go and buy some more to eat and drink for all of us - get yourself some fresh air and gather your thoughts. Mammy needs you strong … and so do I!” He patted his brother’s shoulder and nodded at him and Sean sniffed loudly then shook himself.

“Okay Paddy, some air would do me good. I’ll see what I can get; it’s late but I can still pull a few strings in this town if I have to.” He pushed his shoulders back and seemed to grow as he walked with determination, out into the corridor.

Paddy turned to the other two people left in the room since Jim was off checking the discreet security ring he had placed around the hospital - he wasn’t about to be caught out again, the way he was earlier.

“I’m glad we have a bit of time to ourselves, I have something I need to say to you two.” He paused and looked squarely into each of the open faces of his so recent hostages.

“I’m sorry!”

Urs and Emily looked at each other, uncertain how to deal with this but Paddy pre-empted the need for them to say anything as he warmed to his subject. “I’ve come to a decision while I’ve been sitting here, wrenching my guts out. Just before that doc came in I made a pact with God … I only hope he still listens to me.” He stopped and studied his shoes as he pondered his words then went on, more quietly, thoughtfully. “I made him a promise, you see. I promised that if he let mammy live I would quit this life I live here - cut all my ties … and, as soon as she is well, I’ll take her back to the old country as she has always wanted. And I will … I’ll do it!”

Now he looked at them again and they saw the desperate love in his gaze. Emily moved towards him again and tried to take his hand once more but he waved her gently away.

“I haven’t finished yet Emily … I promised more. Part of the bargain involves you two, you see. I have to try to make right all the wrongs I’ve done you in the last few days. I don’t know how I am going to do it but I will … you have my word. It was all a big mistake you see - you wandered up to my house and my greedy, dirty soul took advantage of the situation. Now I have to put that right … whatever you want - money … anything.”

Urs cleared his throat and Paddy looked at him expectantly.

“We don’t want your money, really we don’t. I have all the money I need. I am glad though, to hear that you are getting out of the crime business. Early this morning we were asked, Emily and I, to forgive your whole family and I refused. I had so much anger in my heart but now… well, I just want to put it all behind me … us - I want to have a new start to life, you see, with Emily. Your mother made that possible when she saved her. I will never forget that … never.”

Emily smiled up into Urs’s face then placed a solitary finger on his lips as if to seal a pact. Paddy watched the tender gesture and his eyes lit up with a sudden thought.

“Hey, I have an idea! Why don’t you come back to the house, chase the bad memories away with some good ones. You know … it would be a lovely place for a wedding!” He winked at Urs and smiled for the first time in over twenty four hours.

Both Emily and Urs swivelled their heads as though they were on sticks - from one another, to Paddy then back to each other.

“I think that may be a little bit premature, Paddy. I know now that I love Emily with every fibre of my being but in actual fact we have only known one another for a few days.” Emily nodded and continued where Urs left off.

“Yes, we met at the airport on our way here … and it wasn’t a very auspicious meeting if I am honest.” Paddy watched bemused as both Emily and Urs began to smile. Obviously their memories must be funny, he thought. But …wait a minute …?

“You only met at the airport? You led me to believe on that same day that you were a couple!” He looked at Urs and his eyes demanded an explanation - so Urs filled him in on the details.

“After your mammy recognised me and I was welcomed into your house, it was the only way I could think of to ensure that Emily was treated the same as me. I thought it was for the best and let me tell you .. It made for a couple of very interesting days!” Now he grinned at Emily and her cheeks coloured prettily as she too remembered certain details.

“Okay, so let me get this straight - you weren’t a couple then … but you are now.” Two heads nodded simultaneously.

“Actually, to get back to our earlier conversation, in an odd way maybe I should thank you. If it hadn’t been for those two dumb crooks bringing me to you then Emily and I would probably have gone our separate ways and look what I would have missed then.” He wasn’t looking at Paddy as he spoke. He pulled Emily towards him and kissed her gently and they stood for long moments looking into each others eyes. Paddy suddenly felt like an intruder. He coughed to hide his embarrassment.

“Well, I think I could do with some of that fresh air I sent Sean to find. I’ll leave you two alone … to talk!” He walked towards the door, then turned on his heel. “But the offer of a wedding venue is still out there … for when you are ready … I’ll keep the next few months open!”

Their interlude, though, was not as long as our lovers had hoped it might be. Sean returned after five minutes and gestured to them frantically.

"Come on you two. Mammy is awake! We just spoke to her and now she knows that you are here she’s asking for you so Paddy sent me to get you!”

The unlikely group of three sped down the corridors until they reached Bridie’s room. At the door Urs and Emily stopped, unsure if it would be polite to enter but it was Paddy who, on seeing them, gestured from a chair beside the bed. So they entered the room but neither was prepared for what they found there ….


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Mon Jan 17, 2011 8:20 pm

Chapter 35

The dim light in the room picked out highlights of the group gathered there, giving the scene an ethereal glow. Sean had returned to his mother’s bedside and now echoed Paddy in gazing attentively at his mother. The two men looked careworn from lack of sleep and Emily supposed that she and Urs must look much the same. Finally she was ready to check out her saviour so she let her eyes travel up Bridie’s form in the bed - right up to where she was propped up on pillows … eating soup and haranguing her sons for not getting their rest! She looked at Urs who was as wide eyed as herself at this. They had expected a feeble invalid, clinging to life but Bridie O’Donnell was made of sterner stuff than that!

Now she looked to the newcomers and smiled.

“Hello Urs, hello Emily. Why, you two look as bad as my boys here. I think you all need to go home and get some sleep. You can all see that I’m fine so there’s no need to hang around here. If it wasn’t that I was so flamin’ hungry I’d already be snoring, I can tell you … it’s been a long day!” Urs couldn’t keep the grin from his features and Emily giggled at Bridie’s matter of fact bravado. They approached her bedside.

“Mrs O’Donnell, Emily and I have to thank you for what you did today before we go anywhere.” He was prepared to make a long speech but Bridie tutted him into silence.

“Now don’t start all that nonsense. Anyone would have done it - well anyone who cared about what happened to you two.” She waved her arm, airily, to dismiss the deed but Urs couldn’t let it go at that.

“No, you must let me finish - I insist!” Bridie closed her mouth and looked at Urs with twinkling eyes. She loved a man with strong convictions so was delighted to see Urs, as she had suspected since she had first become a fan, exhibiting these qualities. She put her spoon down and a playful finger onto her lips in a gesture of acquiescence. Urs couldn’t help smiling at the spirit of the woman and he favoured her with one of his famed blinky winks, causing her to giggle like a young girl, much to the mystification of her two sons - they had NEVER seen or heard their mother behave in such a fashion before. Urs continued: “You are a very brave woman, Mrs O’Donnell, and you won’t make me believe otherwise. And you have no idea what you have done for me.” He turned to Emily and held his hand out to her and she took it firmly. Emily decided to get into the conversation.

“He’s right, Bridie - may I call you that … Mrs O’Donnell seems a very formal means of address to someone who did what you did, today?” Bridie merely nodded but she placed her hand on top of Urs’s and Emily’s joined hands and squeezed them. “You are a special lady, very special. Thanks for giving me my life back … I have so much to look forward to now.” Again she turned loving eyes up to Urs who returned the look.

Bridie was overcome by the emotion contained within their gaze and thought back wistfully to her own days with her man, so very long ago. She was an uncompromising, sometimes hard, woman but she, too, had known a wonderful love. He had been taken by illness far too early but she knew that if they had lived together to each be a hundred, it would have always been too soon … that’s what love - real love, does. She sighed but then decided that it might be pertinent to say a few things, particularly to Urs - things she had longed to say.

“You have to understand a little bit about the nature of being a fan. It’s a very strange phenomenon, you know. When I first heard Il Divo sing it was as though someone had opened a door for me. I understand now that my loneliness made me very amenable to it all but that is fine. My boys here didn’t understand; thought their mammy was finally going cuckoo - mind you they would have never dared say it.” She paused to look at Paddy and Sean who each shook their heads in denial in exactly the manner of young boys. She smiled at them indulgently before carrying on with her explanation. “Anyway, it was getting involved in the diva community that set everything in motion. That forum was such a grand place. No one thought I was a silly old woman, no one told me I was acting like a teenager. That’s the thing, of course … I think I was. You,“ she looked directly at Urs now. “You gave me permission to feel young again; to re-capture some of that lost sense of fun. It was wonderful and it affected my life like no other sensation since my darlin’ hubby was alive, God rest him. The younger ones have their fantasies and why not? Surely that is a normal part of growing up but we older ladies love our camaraderie. We love having a giggle about you - after all … we’re old … not dead!” She paused again to gauge Urs’s reaction and was pleased to see him throw his head back in outright laughter. “But, in all honesty, Urs, we’re not daft … well not all of us.” She thought of the few around the forum that might be teetering on the edge of strangeness but, as she and her friends had always said, life is full of all sorts! She got back to her point. “We want to have the chance to see you in concert, we hope and pray for a meeting or a quick handshake or autograph but you know what we want most of all … we want you to be happy!”

It was Urs’s turn to squeeze Bridie’s hand now.

“We know that - lots of ladies send cards and tell us exactly that. There is a great warmth about the majority of our fans and we love it, really we do. We can sit in a restaurant or a bar and know most fans will leave us be there - not many bands can say that. We are really very lucky. Bridie clapped her hands to show her delight at his words.

“It does my heart good to hear you say that. I’m sure you’ve worked out that I’m an uberbabe and let me tell you, young man, that your babes would be delighted to hear you say what you just told me … think about it the next time someone shoves a microphone in front of you!” Urs nodded with a smile. “Anyway, the reason I am rambling on like this is to help you understand why I did what I did earlier. I had seen how you and Emily looked at each other, even back at my birthday celebration. Paddy has told me now that you weren’t even a proper couple back then but there was certainly something … a spark! So, when that bimbo brandished a gun at you I couldn’t let her hurt either of you. I felt so responsible, you see - if I hadn’t insisted that you were my birthday present then you would probably have walked away from the house that night.

Everyone looked quietly at each other and knew that Mammy was correct but they also were privately admitting that different things had caused different outcomes. No one wanted to challenge her, though - it was best to let the matter go now. Bridie watched the play on their faces and knew what they were thinking - none of the O’Donnells were innocent but Urs and Emily had each done things that set in motion the cause and effect. It was enough for tonight. No doubt there would be many more inquests in the future but not now.

With an exaggerated yawn she wriggled back down in the bed and grimaced slightly for extra effect.

“Okay, my bonny lads and beautiful girl, I think it’s time you all pushed off so I can catch up on my beauty sleep. And, much as it grieves me to say it, you could all do with doing the same. Go on, off home with you all now - I’ll still be here tomorrow … unfortunately so you can come to see me again then.” She closed her eyes and snuggled into her pillow and each of the other occupants of the room knew that they were being dismissed so, after much kissing and hugging, they finally did as they were told and went home to bed.

*****

Bed.

What a monumental word that could be. Urs had little else on his mind as they rode back to the hotel. Emily was quiet, her head on his shoulder; giving no hint of how she felt. So what did he do; did assume she wished to carry on with the earlier banter … and whatever else might follow - or was her silence signalling a whole different point of view. Maybe she was just teasing … he wished he knew!

They pulled up in front of the Four Seasons as pink fingers of dawn light spread outwards from the distant horizon. Emily looked at the daybreak and groaned softly then she took Urs’s hand and walked beside him up to their suite. Few words were exchanged - whatever they were thinking was being kept inside. As soon as they were through the door, Emily grabbed her toiletries and pyjamas from her bag.

“I’ll use the bathroom first, shall I … I’m rather desperate.” Urs grinned and gestured with a bow that she should go ahead. He saw to his own needs while he was alone in the bedroom - no Pjs for him … not his style at all but his tooth brush and paste and other refreshers. Then he waited.
Emily wasn’t long; her sleepy head poked around the door as she tidied her things away and then she scurried out of the bathroom.

“It’s all yours now, darling!” She hurried to the big bed and climbed onto it. He noted the pretty, lace edged shorts and vest top, a delightful shade of lilac that complimented her colouring and a figure hugging style that accentuated her figure - and his thoughts were crystallised once more along the ‘should he / shouldn’t he’ route!

In the bathroom he maintained a silent argument with himself as he brushed his hair and made himself presentable. It was all so unlike him … he wouldn’t have normally hesitated - but then he had never truly been in love before. With a last steely look at himself in the mirror he decided to just see how it ran and then follow her lead and he sauntered into the bedroom as though he didn’t have a care in the world.

He crossed to the bed and smiled. Emily was snuggled into the pillows, her hair spread about in an unruly cloud … and blissfully asleep. He flipped the light switch and slid into bed beside her. She was warm and smelled delightful as always. He gathered her gently into his arms and softly kissed her forehead then closed his eyes. Sleep was good now, very good - and who knew what tomorrow or rather later today, might bring.


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:02 pm

Chapter 36

Emily stretched and opened her eyes. The dappled pattern etched upon the ceiling by the mid-day sun dragged a smile from her. She looked to Urs, still sleeping on the adjacent pillow and her smile deepened. She rolled towards him and aligned her body with his. He was warm and exuded a pleasant, masculine smell. She inhaled … wonderful!

The call of nature demanded her attention so she scampered off to the bathroom and ran through her usual morning routine, albeit with unusual speed and only minutes elapsed before she stood back beside the bed. He had not moved a muscle and she sighed as she watched the placid rhythm of his breathing. Her thoughts swayed with the possibilities his recumbent form presented and then she added the music of fantasy and let them dance. He promised intoxication and she couldn’t wait another moment to drink.

His skin glistened in the sunlight and, on a whim, she discarded her clothing so that her own pale skin could offer comparison to his golden glow. She eased herself between the sheets and, by slow, deliberate inches, moulded herself into him. Her eyes never left his face.

The dream became reality as his senses awakened. Urs slid his arms around her and electricity surged through him as his fingers caressed the skin at the small of her back. Emily watched, delighted, as his eyes, pools of molten honey, slid over her face … questioning. For an answer she offered him her mouth, a gift he accepted with no need for a word to be spoken.

And the lovers loved. In their place; the special paradise of their making, they gave and received, spoke and listened to, touched and were touched by, love. It entered and fulfilled them, Life and love irrevocably entwined in perfect symmetry.

What time had passed - was it hours? Our lovers didn’t know, only knowing that they didn’t care. Telephones buzzed and doors were knocked upon but all distractions were ignored. Together they conducted an inventory, each of the other, so that no muscle nor sinew nor inch of skin went un-appreciated. But sooner or later the mind, like the body, must come up for air.

Emily stretched like the proverbial cat with the entire tub of cream at its disposal then turned to her lover.

“Urs, are you hungry?” He lay on his stomach among the rumpled sheets so she didn’t see the grin form.

“Nope … don’t think I’m hungry any more. I gulped down the starter, lost myself entirely in the sumptuous main course and enjoyed playing with the delicious dessert for hours but, don’t worry … my appetite is usually very reliable … I’ll be peckish again before you know it!” He lifted himself to face her and rested his chin on a nonchalant hand. His expression said angel but Emily knew otherwise. She jumped up, a luscious Venus rising from the waves to make even Botticelli salivate anew. She smiled then wrenched a pillow from under herself and set about him with determination. All he could do was howl with laughter as he attempted to fend her off. She was a demon, a whirling dervish. She was his angel.

She tired of the joke so stopped and, with a demure lowering of her eyes, entranced him all over again. He reached out a hand to brush away the silken, chestnut strands that had wrapped themselves around her mouth and cheeks in the melee.

“Would you like me to order some room service, my darling girl? I could eat something as a matter of fact - let’s find the menu.

Emily giggled.

“I thought you’d never ask!” She launched herself from the bed and ran to the door then into the lounge, leaving Urs to marvel at the perfection of the view. She returned to him moments later brandishing the leather bound booklet in triumph. It was far too late for breakfast so they ordered copious amounts of lunch items from which they could pick whenever their hearts desired. Urs’s eyes glinted as he put the menu on the bedside table.

“Well, that’s great - everything we could possibly want to eat - and we won’t have to leave the suite until we really, absolutely, have to!” Emily‘s smile was knowing yet, somehow, innocent, causing Urs to lean forward and kiss her but then he pulled away. “Now I’m sure there’d be time for a shower first … care to join me?”

“You just want someone to scrub your back, don’t you?” Emily’s look was coquettish.

“Yes … something like that!” He stood and, with very little effort, swept Emily up into his embrace then carried her off to the bathroom, whistling as he went.

*****

Wrapped in voluminous bathrobes, courtesy of the hotel, Urs and Emily ate heartily of the bounty spread before them; mountains of sandwiches with every possible filling, French fries, raw vegetables that were accompanied by delicious dips then chocolate torte and fruit salad and pavlova and even assorted cheeses. It was a feast suitable for the occasion.

“I love to watch you eat.” Urs had stopped, momentarily forgetting the platter of cheeses he had been delighting in. “You do it with such gusto, like a little girl in her first ever sweet shop.” Emily chewed the mouthful of fruit and cream filled, crunchy meringue, unable to answer but she gestured furiously, causing Urs to snigger. When her mouth was empty she delayed filling it again, much as she wanted to.

“You’re a fine one to talk … who ate all the chips before I could get near them.” Her bluster was the cause of Urs’s snigger changing into a head thrown back guffaw and she joined in before continuing. “Oh, I love the way you laugh. Actually I love your intensity - either the happiest person in the world or an assassin who will kill as soon as look at the person who offends you.” He put the half empty cheese plate back on the table.

“You make me happy … and from now on I’ll only want to kill anyone who tries to hurt you.” He reached out and took her hand then carried it to his lips.

The food was forgotten. Urs pulled Emily onto his lap and kissed her . It was a soft, sensuous signal that the meal was over - at least for now!
Time elapsed again and, again, our lovers were oblivious but at some point the annoyances were stepped up a notch; it was as if the world was trying to gain their attention. This culminated with a thunderous pounding on the door. Their reverie was pierced and, before they could dismiss the noise as they had so many others, a booming voice all but shook the walls.

“Urs Buhler I am giving you fair warning, if you don’t come out of your cocoon and acknowledge the people who need to speak to you … then I am coming in! I have the spare suite keys, remember and, if necessary, I will have security batter down this door. It is 8.30 pm now and you have fifteen minutes to make yourself presentable and then come to see me - and you know me, Buhler … this is not an empty threat!”

The silence that followed the threat was deafening. Emily looked at Urs.

“Was that Simon? What does he mean … people who have to speak to you and would he really break the door down.?” Urs turned to face her and every trace of the softness of earlier was gone to be replaced by a wry grin.

“Yes, it was Simon - my boss … God love him … and I think he needs to speak to me ….


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Wed Jan 26, 2011 10:31 pm

Chapter 37

Urs’s entry into Simon’s suite was met by five of the smuggest looks it had been his misfortune to encounter and he groaned inwardly; they were not going to let him off easily. He looked around, his gaze cool, disparaging then waved both hands in the air in surrender.

“Okay … get it over with!” He plonked himself down on the nearest chair and waited.

“Ooh, looking tired Urs - get comfy there while you can, man; take the weight off your libido.” David’s chortle was matched by Carlos delighted booming.

“Si … sit down and don’t worry - we will keep the lovely Emily at bay while you have the rest, amigo.” He turned instantly to Sebastien and nudged him theatrically but Seb merely smiled serenely yet knowingly at Urs and, in return Urs couldn‘t keep the grin from his face.

Simon, needing to get on with the business at hand, interrupted at this point.

“Yes, yes, guys; enough of the juvenile banter. Now, can we please try to remember that we are all grown-ups and talk about the important stuff … before Urs disappears into his love nest again.” The comment, though delivered in Simon’s usual matter-of-fact way, was like a signal to the others and suddenly the nudge, nudge, wink comments were flying round the room, making Simon feel as though he had stumbled into a Benny Hill sketch from the 1970s. He raised his eyes to the heavens then inserted two fingers into his mouth and whistled loudly.

“Stop now, you bunch of idiots or I swear I will schedule extra rehearsal sessions every day for a week.” He looked at the four suddenly serious, over grown teenagers that were lounging about the furniture and had to smother a laugh then quickly, before they could revert to their naughty boy inner selves, he pulled a set of folders from the desk and handed one to each of them.

The four changed in an instant of time. This was work. Simon watched as each man scanned the contents, even pointing out particular aspects as they read it through and then, when the were all looking at him again, he knew it was time to begin.

“Right guys, you are all very aware that our rehearsal schedule has fallen behind due to Urs’s little brush with the crime world.” He smiled at Urs, knowing he would approve of his understatement. “So we have to decide exactly how you can be ready to perform by this time next week.” Put so baldly, the Divos realised the enormity of their task. This was the start of a new tour, after all so as well as the usual run-throughs of the songs and sound-checks in the venue, they would also need choreography and costume rehearsals - it was going to be a lot of work!

Five heads spent the next few hours poring over suggestions and counter suggestions until, after a few cross words and emphatic gestures, arrangements were in place to everyone’s satisfaction and the tour was in business again. Finally Simon nodded with satisfaction then called a halt to the meeting, happy in the knowledge that he could leave the working plans in the hands of these four perfectionists and go back to Los Angeles and the rest of his business.

As he slipped the key into the lock on his door, Urs, though, had a heavy heart … how was this going to impact on his wonderful new relationship?

He moved with stealth around the darkened room. He undressed then used the bathroom before padding over to the bed. He paused to look at Emily and sighed; it was going to be very difficult to leave her but what was the alternative? He couldn’t in all conscience ask her to throw away her career so that she could become a nomad, following him from concert to concert. Sure there would be time enough, after the tour to make a life for themselves, put down proper roots - but what about now? He had only just found her for God’s sake! He lifted the duvet and manoeuvred himself alongside her. She was so peaceful that he didn’t want to disturb her. Of course, if he was honest, he would have to admit that the real reason was that he didn’t want her to start questioning. There would be time enough for that tomorrow. Let her sleep on now without having to consider any clouds on their horizon. She muttered something and then smiled as she spoke his name then she cuddled into him, still wrapped in her dream and he felt as though his heart would break.

*****

As Urs’s eyes adjusted to the morning light he realised that he was alone in the big bed. He looked around helpless, searching. His dream prickled at his psych. He had been on an empty road and he was running after Emily but no matter how much effort he had put into his strides he couldn’t force his legs to take him to her. He wiped a hand across his brow and noted the beads of sweat there then he sat up, suddenly and irrationally, worried … where the hell was she?

As if on cue, he heard the bathroom door open and out she breezed into the bright sunlight. She saw him and immediately bounced over to jump onto the bed beside him. She leant in and gave him a smacking kiss.

“At last you’re awake, sleepy head. You were having one seriously weird dream earlier, my love. You were panting … very interesting. I would have been a wee bit jealous if you had looked as though you were having a good time but, somehow, I don’t think you were.” For an answer Urs pulled her into his embrace and hugged her ‘til she might break. When he released the pressure and she could breathe again she looked at him closely. “Are you alright, Urs? What’s upset you? I’m here so you can stop worrying now.” She smoothed her hand over his hair and kissed his brow then snuggled him into her body. He accepted her warmth and comfort with a gratitude that was tinged with a further foreboding of what he might have to give up but he didn’t voice his fears - he wasn’t yet ready for that.

“I’m fine, darling girl, just a throwback dream to our captivity but you’re very nice to wake up to … you smell gorgeous.” He sniffed extravagantly at her throat and wrapped his arms around her once more but this time it was in answer to a completely different need. After a few seconds, though, she gently pushed him away.

“Mmm, you’re going to have to hold that thought for a while, baby because I’m afraid it’s my turn to be summoned by my boss - , by the way you must tell me what Simon thought was so urgent, when I get back. The great Bartholomew T Standish himself has flown over to check that I am, in fact, in one piece. He’s downstairs waiting for me now - that’s why I’ve got my smart stuff on.” She looked at him and saw the regret in his eyes without, fortunately, realising the whole reason for it. “Now I won’t be long, I promise. Why don’t you go back to sleep and I will be back before you know it.” She flipped her eyebrows up to her hairline and nodded in a suggestive gesture that made Urs smile in spite of himself. He reached out a finger and caressed her cheek.

“That sounds like a good idea … you hurry back and I’ll keep the bed warm.” He lay back down and wriggled into the pillows with theatrical pleasure but then watched her go and felt a sudden and ridiculous urge to cry.


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:30 pm

Chapter 38

If Emily was nervous she made a very good show of hiding it as she strolled into the hotel lounge. Bartholomew T Standish … even the name could not have been picked to better effect. Her boss, rounded like an over-inflated football, filled one of the French inspired and somewhat fragile chairs to overflowing. He was not in the least non-plussed by this though, in fact he was in his element. He sat, resplendent in the khaki canvas pants and Harris tweed jacket for which he was renowned. This was topped, as always, by an extravagant Fedora that was always, always, worn at a jaunty angle. Barty, as he was known to his friends, was impressive and that was the way he liked it.

As he spied Emily’s entrance into the room he struggled to his feet and threw his arms out wide. If she might have missed him before this she certainly couldn’t now. His smile was effusive but genuine as he waited for her to enter his embrace and once she was safely there he crushed her to his jacket until she feared that the buttons would leave symmetrical bruises down her torso. When she could manage a breath she laughed.

“Goodness me, Barty, are you trying to finish me off - let me have my oxygen supply back please before I pass out?” A gust of raucous laughter was his answer but he did loosen his grip. Emily rubbed her ribs but then leaned forward and kissed him soundly on the cheek. “It’s so good to see you … and un-expected! You didn’t have to come all this way to check on me, a phone call would have done the job just as well.

“I tried that, my dear but your phone has been switched off for the last couple of days - can’t think what has been keeping you so busy.” A slow suffusion of pink rose over Emily’s features but Barty had no idea why so he dismissed it. “Anyway, I simply had to come and see for myself that my number one assistant was alive and kicking, so to speak. So, how are, sweetie … raring to get back in the saddle, I hope

Emily said nothing. Instead she sat on the opposite side of the table and wondered what she was going to do now. This was her worst fear. She had hoped to have longer to sort out the jumble of thoughts that had assailed her mind since Urs had come into her life. She couldn’t possibly make any decisions about her future until they had talked about how each saw their joint future. She had to stall, make Barty happy to let her have some thinking room. She took a deep breath and then looked at him, a sudden glint of determination in her gaze.

“Oh Barty, I have to be honest and say that, at this moment in time, I don’t know what I want but one thing I am sure of is that I need some time. The thought of jumping straight back into work is non too attractive just now. You have to understand … we were held captive, we were threatened with guns, we hid in a barn after our escape and then, when we thought we were safe …” Unexpectedly big, fat tears splashed onto her cheeks and she hiccoughed as her voice caught in her throat. Barty leaned forward and patted her shoulder; he had never seen his star employee so unsure. After a moment or two she squeezed the words she needed to say out. “Someone tried to kill me, she fired a gun at me and if it hadn’t been for a woman who we considered to be one of our enemies, I would be dead!”

The word hung like a pall between them.

Barty, who was known for extravagant histrionics on occasion, clasped a hand to his mouth and, with eyes like saucers, regarded Emily’s stricken expression. He looked in danger of crying himself. He had received a brief account of the events of Emily’s incarceration and escape but it was only now that he realised how potentially deadly an experience it had been.

“Sweetheart … darling, stop that right now You mustn’t dwell on all that - try to put it behind you. You’re here, safe and well, with your whole life ahead of you. And of course you don’t have to make any decisions about work today - take some vacation time, I’m sure you’re owed lots of it, and let yourself relax then, when you are ready … no one else - just you, we can talk about it again.”

Emily sprang out of her chair and hugged Barty. She couldn’t imagine now, why she was worried. She had always been treated fairly by her employer and she should have known he would understand her needs now.

“You are a star, Barty, you really are. Thanks so much for understanding. I’m sure that Brian will be more than happy to pick up the reins in the meantime.” Both broke into relieving laughter at the appalling thought that the office ‘jobs worth’ might be their only alternative. Fortunately there were many bright, young things within the company structure who were capable of filling the gap she would temporarily leave so neither worried too much about the outcome of this decision.

Barty ordered tea and pastries for them, citing a missed breakfast due to the usual appalling airplane food and the conversation was able to meander over the mundane gossip of which they were both so fond. Emily felt light of heart. She knew there were bridges to cross but at least she had taken the first step. She and Urs could spend sometime together, even if she did have to follow him all over the States to do so. Then she stopped chewing in mid bite … what if he wouldn’t want her around while he was working? She realised with a jolt that she actually knew very little about him. She sighed … she would just have to learn!

She was suddenly aware of the volume of Barty’s shrill voice rising a notch or two.

“Emily … young lady, you are not listening to me. Tell me what’s on your mind - I want to know all the details. This man, for instance, the one who was also a captive … who is he? I know that he is some sort of singer but do tell me more. What’s he like; is he good looking, young? Come on … tell me!” Emily couldn’t help but laugh - this was the boss she knew and loved!

“You are so inquisitive, Barty. Okay, let me try to answer all of those questions. His name is Urs, Urs Buhler and he is an opera singer but at the present he is singing cross-over music.” Barty interrupted her here.
“Yes, I do know that as a matter of fact. He’s one of the Il Divo guys - isn‘t he? It was their manager who rang me personally to let me know you were okay. The girls in the office told me that they are gorgeous so is your guy then, is he gorgeous?” ~Barty was in full flow now and Emily dissolved into gales of laughter one more. She answered him between gasps for breath.

I don’t know why you are asking me all this stuff, you seem to know more about it all than I do!” Barty’s steepled his hands together in supplication.

“Please darling; enquiring minds need to know.”
“Hmm! Yes … he is gorgeous … extremely and unbelievably gorgeous and he is kind and noble and, well, absolutely wonderful, actually.” Barty’s hand had flown back to cover his mouth at her obvious joy in her statements.

“Oh, oh my God … you’re in love with him aren’t you? Now I simply have to meet him. Where is this paragon? Ring him! I’ve just thought of something - does he feel the same … is he your boyfriend?” He clapped his hands together in childish glee?” “Who is this man that’s finally caught my clever Emily? Show me him now!”

A deep but polite cough interrupted his litany.

“I think you’ll find that is me, Sir, I am the lucky man who is Emily’s boyfriend!” Barty whirled round and stared, goggle-eyed, at Urs. He stared then brazenly looked him over from head to foot before speaking in a stage whisper to Emily.

“My God, Emily, what are you waiting for … run away with this god - run away while you have the chance!”


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Sat Feb 05, 2011 4:57 pm

Chapter 39

Barty would happily have kept the young lovers with him all day if he could. He was more than a little smitten by the alternately gregarious then taciturn Swiss and, as he already loved Emily to bits he enjoyed sharing even a sliver of their lives with them. Almost an hour had elapsed before the insistent chiming of Urs’s phone interrupted their get together. Urs walked away to answer but was back in seconds.

“It’s Simon‘s assistant. We are needed up in his suite; something to do with a police interview.” He looked from Emily to Barty. “I’m sorry Barty but we are going to have to leave you now but perhaps we could get together for a meal later.” Barty’s face showed his disappointment as was his way.

“Oh no, I have so much to tell you about this lovely girl here but, okay … dinner would be wonderful. Emily give me a call when you are available and we can fix a time.”

“Yes Barty, I’ll do that. It’s such a shame that you won’t be staying in New York longer but duty calls as always.”

“Yes, a shame indeed but I am, as you know, a slave to duty. But never mind, I’ll see you lovely young things later … by for now, darlings!” He gave them both extravagant air kisses then watched them go with a sigh.
As they walked out of the lounge Urs surprised Emily by guiding her to the main exit rather than to the elevators and she looked at him quizzically.

“Sorry for my little lie in there. We’re not needed for anything I simply thought that you might need rescuing so I arranged for Seb to give me a call after a decent passage of time. Barty’s such a nice guy though so I hope you don’t think I over-stepped the mark.”

“Of course I don’t. We need to spend time together - I think we have a lot to talk about.” Urs beamed at her.

“Yes, I think you’re right, my darling girl … so why don’t we get some fresh air into our lungs. It’s a beautiful day and the park is a few minutes away … care to take a walk with me?”

“Why I think that would be perfect, Mr Buhler and maybe we can get a bite of lunch … I’m starving!”

“It’s all taken care of.” Urs crossed to the concierge’s desk and spoke with him quietly and in no time at all a hamper magically appeared. He grasped it in one hand and Emily’s hand in the other and she looked up at him, delighted.

“I love a man who thinks of everything … I love you.”

*****

In a secluded spot by the lake they lay on a blanket that the hotel had thoughtfully included in the picnic basket. They were both pleasantly full and only half emptied wine glasses remained to show the extent of the delightful spread they had so recently shared. Urs, his head propped up on his hand, watched Emily as she lay, eyes closed, enjoying the dappled sunlight as it warmed her face.

After a few moments she opened her eyes. She had known he had been looking at her, she could feel his eyes upon her. The sensation was thrilling. She reached out a hand and brushed back the curls that had fallen forward onto his cheek then she tucked them carefully behind his ear. He said nothing, merely smiled. She sidled across the small expanse between them and cuddled into his side and he inched further round so that his upper body hung over hers. And he kissed her. It was a long, languorous kiss, soft yet somehow demanding. It claimed her. After long seconds they broke apart.

“Mmm, I love the way you kiss.” Urs smiled and the tip of his tongue teased along his teeth. He took her words as an invite. The second kiss was deeper; it hinted at burgeoning passion and this time when they drew apart, Emily was panting slightly. “Now you’re making me wish that we had gone to the suite rather than here. She ran the flat of her hand provocatively over the plains of his back, feeling the muscles’ subtle movement in response. Urs laughed and shook his head.

“Stop distracting me, minx - I thought you wanted to talk.”

“Hey, it was you that started the teasing …kissing me like that … how’s a girl to think, never mind talk when she is being kissed like that.”

“Well, that’s entirely your fault, too. How’s a guy, this guy anyway, going to think about conversation when the woman he loves is laying next to him, looking gorgeous.” Emily scowled then hauled herself up so that she could sit cross-legged.

“Right … talk now, passion later … agreed?” Urs sighed and adopted a sad expression then mimicked her actions so that he too sat cross-legged opposite Emily.

“Right … agreed … but talk fast please!”

So, what did she do now; what did she say? She was a confident woman, known for her ability to converse about anything under the sun but here she was struck dumb. Urs watched the uncertainty play across her frowning face and quailed. Was there something in her discussion with Barty that she hadn’t yet told him because she knew he wouldn’t like it. He picked up her hand, stopping it from clutching at her shirt.

“Is there something wrong, darling girl, something you are afraid to tell me?” Emily closed her eyes at his question then her courage prevailed and she plunged forward.

“No, Urs, not something to tell you … something to ask you. As Barty told you, he has suggested that I take some time off so that I can get over our little escapade and I really want to do that but ….” She faltered.

“What … what do you want to ask me? You can ask me anything and if I can I will give you anything you wish for. Please don’t look so worried … you’re scaring me.” She lowered her head before answering him in a halting voice.

“It’s just that I don’t know what I am going to do. You have the tour, you’ll be off all over the States so what should I do? Should I go back to England … or stay here?"

“What … why would you want to go to England?” Urs’s voice held an edge of panic and his tone had become harsh. He lifted her face so that she was forced to look at him and his heart broke as he saw fat tears pooling in her eyes. His voice dropped to a whisper. “Don’t you want to stay with me?” Emily panicked at the hurt she saw on his face.

“Oh no, of course I want to stay with you … forever if you’ll let me - it’s just that I thought I might be in the way.” Urs rose up on his knees and pulled Emily into his arms, crushing her to his chest.

“Scheisse, don’t do that to me, Emily, I thought I was going to lose you when I had only just found you. Get in the way … get in the way? Are you mad I want to spend every minute of the rest of my life with you, if you’ll let me. Here’s me trying to work out how I can have you at the side of the stage while I’m performing and I find out that you aren’t sure I want you here. God woman … haven’t you heard me when I’ve told you that I love you … I LOVE YOU!” He was shouting by the time he finished and Emily looked shocked so he did the natural thing and kissed her … hard. After a few seconds he broke away, shaking his head then he lifted her chin. “Emily, will you please spend the free time you have travelling with me. The tour can be hard but we do get free time in each place so we can do some sight-seeing … and we will always have the nights!” His mouth stretched into a grin, wicked and oh so appealing and Emily laughed, as much with relief as at his innuendo.

“Yes Urs, oh yes, I would love to go on tour with you - I would love to do anything as long as it’s with you.” She reached up and her hands met at the nape of his neck where she wound her fingers into his hair and pulled his face down into a kiss.

Our lovers had the unmistakeable glow of happiness about them as they returned to the hotel. The were not speaking but each considered the future that was spreading out so enticingly before them. Each knew that there would be uncertainties still to face, new situations to address but they both knew that, together … face them they would.


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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Sat Feb 12, 2011 11:06 pm

Okay ... it's the moment I've wanted yet dreaded at the same time ... the final chapter! I won't beat about the bush - just get on with it:-

Chapter 40

A week of constant rehearsals, costume fittings and sound checks drove the Divos almost to exhaustion but there was also the building excitement of a new tour and that carried them through all their trials. Emily watched it play out and was amazed by the guys’ commitment to their work; nothing short of perfection would suffice for them. Far from being a nuisance, the guys found lots of ways they could include her in the proceedings - from coffee runs to asking her opinion on choreography and lighting. And then there was Urs, with his little smiles, soft touches and stolen kisses. What more could a girl in love ask for?

Before they knew it the week was over and the opening concert of the tour was almost upon them. Now the nerves began to show and Emily became invaluable for her ability to soothe egos and sort storms in teacups. She was a natural. Urs watched her as she smoothed feathers and felt so proud of her. She had fitted into his topsy turvy life far better than he could ever have expected or indeed, hoped.

Now it was ‘D day’ and, after an early last run through, they were given a few hours to themselves before they would have to gather to be taken to the arena. After a hasty lunch Emily persuaded Urs to cut short his usual workout in the gym in favour of a more gentle form of exercise - a walk around the park. It was a cold but clear afternoon and the park was only sparsely populated so they meandered the pathways in peace, hand in hand; saying little but merely enjoying the beauty and tranquillity of the day.

After ten minutes or so they approached the spot by the lake where they had picnicked the week before and by mutual but unspoken agreement they wandered to the shore. Urs began to skim stones and Emily smiled to see how this simple pleasure brought the boy in him to the fore.

“You’re very good at that, handsome … fancy a challenge?” She looked at him speculatively and he turned, a look of surprise on his face.

“If you would like to challenge me … woman then fine but I warn you … I’m good!” He waggled his head and sucked his lip in cocky assurance then tossed a stone in the air and caught it without even looking. Emily smirked.

“Full of tricks, aren’t you - but I have a few of my own dearie. Come on then … skim!”

Stones flew across the water, bouncing two, three, four times and then one magnificent effort from Emily that produced five bounces. Urs threw his head back in unrestrained laughter, all tension gone from his frame. He dropped the remaining stones and pounced on Emily, pinioning her arms to her side.

“Okay, I am letting you win. I don’t want to be the best at everything in our relationship so I will give way here.”

“Let me win? You fraud, Buhler, I beat your sorry ass hands down and I will tell you another thing … I won’t let you forget it in a hurry.” She wriggled within the circle of his arms but he held her fast.

“It won’t do you any good, you have no witnesses, apart from those bemused swans over there so no one will believe you. Everyone knows I am the champion stone skimmer.”

“But I will know. I’ll know that I beat you and anyway I can be very convincing - even without witnesses. You will have to buy my silence.” He looked at her, puzzled.

Buy it … how? I offered you my credit card to do your shopping the other day and your reply was unrepeatable so I already know you’re not after my money.”

“Kisses … lots of kisses … whenever I demand them!” Urs mouthed a silent ‘ah’ then leant down to cover her mouth with his.

“Is that the kind of thing you have in mind? If it’s not right I will be happy to keep on practising ‘til I meet your exacting demands. He kissed her again and heat surged through her. She freed her arms and wrapped them around him, returning the passion she had received then she broke away and looked into his smouldering eyes.

“Mmm, yes, that will do nicely.” She instigated the next kiss, moulding herself against him as she let the sensations envelope her. Urs let his lips travel, feathering tiny kisses over her cheeks, eyes, hair. After a few moments he sighed and she looked at him.

“I think I can manage this task but you have to always remember that kisses can have consequences … are you ready to deal with that?” His fingers played a concerto on her back, tracing her spine, moulding over her waist then clasping her to him again. The lovers stood thus for moments lost to the eons of time then, without speech they turned and headed back to the hotel.

*****

The arena was cavernous and oddly sad now, prior to the fulfilment of its role. Urs passed huge hangar doors that stood open as if begging the entry of the throngs that would all too soon surge through to the arena floor. He loved this quiet period of expectation, especially tonight … first night.

As he sat in make-up he heard the hubbub begin to rise and he smiled. This was what a performer lived for. He couldn’t wait to claim the stage with the others. He knew they would each be feeling much the same, maybe a touch of stage fright here or worry there but basically pure, palpable excitement. As he dressed and made last minute checks he felt ready and he exulted in his life.

Then, before he could mark the passage of time, the call came - ‘five minutes guys‘. Their first task would be to charm the fans at a meet and greet. They were told that there were to be a few surprises in the exclusive little gathering so they entered the room with curiosity. They found a sprinkling of celebrities from stage and screen but for Urs it was the group of ladies at the back of the room that caught his attention. Normally so bound by duty, he acted completely out of character when he broke ranks with the others and practically skipped over to the simpering ladies.

“My goodness, Bridie; how wonderful to see you up and about … and here! And Madge and the rest of your friends too - goodness; all the ladies who were involved in our rescue … this is wonderful. I wish Emily was here, I know she would be delighted to see you all.” As he spoke the wish, like a genie she popped up and she too hugged the ladies and thanked them anew. Then she stood with Urs and in spite of his usual reserve in such situations, he quietly took her hand. The gesture wasn’t missed by those present and the ladies all beamed simultaneously, happy to know their idol was happy.

After a time Urs and Emily moved away. He had denied his duties for quite long enough and he apologised to the other men of Il Divo who had been forced to mingle rather than start the official handshake and photographs without one of their number. Soon, however, the line began to flow and Emily watched as her man and his friends went into their well known routine. This was their world and she thrilled to be able to stand on its periphery as she did now.

Soon it was time for the main event and the excitement level rose to one of controlled panic. There was good humoured banter that probably hid last minute nerves but now it was time … their time.

The overture played and the excited chatter of the crowd changed to a low buzz. Finally they were there, on the stage and the audience erupted at the first sight. The adrenaline surged as they took their first steps in time to the opening bars of music.

*****

Emily stood in the wings and was glad to catch a surreptitious glance or two from Urs as he moved around the stage. It felt good that he wanted to know she was still there, still watching and, just before the interval, came the realisation that, even though this was his world, she had found her niche in it. She belonged by his side. She knew that career opportunities would present themselves to her in the future but she also realised that from now on it was their relationship that must take centre stage. Maybe in time it would be his turn to put his plans onto the back burner so that she could pursue an opportunity and, knowing his fairness, she felt an instinctive belief that he would do this for her. For now, though, she was here for him in whatever capacity he would need.

When one loves, wholly, all encompassing, it is a joyous state that makes the small sacrifices easier. Emily knew this and so, she believed, did Urs. As he walked off the stage and into her arms she felt a delicious spike of elation. She loved being in love! Urs kissed her quickly for the mere seconds he had available before costume change.

“I am so glad you are here, my beautiful, darling girl. You make the special excitement of the concert so much better … it must be because I love you! Thanks for being here for me.” His murmured words were followed by another kiss before he was dragged away, none too gently, by the costume assistants. But he walked backwards, blowing kisses as he went and she, laughing, caught one and held it close to her heart. The kiss belonged there, after all, with all the other thoughts, caresses, embraces they had shared thus far and also with the expectations of the life they would share in the future. In actuality it was his heart, joined irrevocably with the one that beat in his own chest and that one, conversely, was hers to the end of time.

Their life … and love stretched out before them!

The End.

Well readers, I never meant this to be a life saga so we shall leave our lovers there. It is now for your own imaginations to decide how they progress - you don’t need my words to furnish the details.

I hope you have enjoyed their journey. It covered a scant couple of weeks in real time but I hope you agree with me when I say that it bridged a chasm in their lives. Time is a moveable feast. It’s gone before you realise how important the tiniest slivers can be. I like to think my imaginary characters know this and will fill their time with joy … but its up to you.

Thanks for reading and commenting and keeping my nose to the grindstone when life was trying to intervene.

Moe xx

P.S. - Incidentally, I have a couple of last thoughts about their story so I am preparing a short epilogue that should be ready for sharing very shortly.


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Location : Urs Buhler, The man of my dreams!!
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PostSubject: Re: Fanfic: Hostage!   Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:46 pm

Epilogue

It was holiday time and even at this late hour the airport concourse was awash with humanity. Business men, their self estimated importance bristling, jostled their way to the check-in desks and monitors and the walls of holidaymakers; groups and families, off in search of a few days warmth as an antidote against the snow and wind at home, proved to be a sturdy barrier against progress of any description. Tempers flared. Everyone was in a hurry!

Urs surveyed the scene and couldn’t prevent a smile from creeping across his features. He had been there … here, so many times before. The ten years with Il Divo had provided success beyond his wildest dreams but it had exacted a hefty price … travel, lots of it … and airports! He doubted there were many left on the planet that he had not passed through at one time or another. Work was wonderful but hectic so when the chance to get away, relax, came along it had to be grasped whenever and wherever possible - which was exactly what he was doing. Of course it meant another airport - oh well!

He listened to snippets of chatter in the first class lounge as he waited for the announcement of the flight to Zurich. His thoughts sped to home and he smiled again … it had been so long since he last saw his extended family. Sounds intruded again and his well tuned hearing picked up the unmistakeable twang of a country beat. He shook his head then turned on his heel.

“Gott, haven’t I managed to educate your taste in music yet, woman?”
“Emily sat directly behind him and she smiled wickedly at her pre-arranged joke before switching her ipod to an Il Divo track from the latest album.

“Better?”

“Hmm, no comment … I have to maintain my modesty, sweetheart.”

“Well come and sit down and you can choose what to listen to - some Mozart, perhaps or are you in the mood for some Ozzy?” Urs laughed as he slid into the chair beside hers. He knew she was teasing him and he loved her all the more for it.

“I’ll be honest with you, my darling girl,” he stretched out a hand and caressed her arm that rested close to him, “life might have been very different if I hadn’t heard your music that day so really I should love country!” He stared into her eyes and reminded himself for at least the thousand-eth time, that he never tired of allowing himself to drown in their luscious depths. They looked at each other for long seconds, sharing secret memories and wishes.

There was a muffled sound and both of our lovers were alerted from their thoughts.

“Ah, it looks like music choices will have to wait, darling; you have other things to deal with … it’s your turn!” As if on cue another voice insinuated itself into the conversation.

“Papa, you said you would show me the big aeroplanes if I had a little sleep - well I did! Can we go papa … can we?” Urs watched the small boy that had rolled off the couch beside his mother and was now engaged in the task of standing on sturdy but still tired, three year old legs - until daddy decided that a rescue was in order and scooped him up then held him to his chest.

“Haha, okay, Freddie but hush … don’t wake your sister.”

“No, don’t wake Eloise, please Freddie … mamma is enjoying this little rest!”
Emily’s words were soft as she surveyed her two men, Freddie, like a miniature version of the man that now held him so tenderly. She watched them walk away and remembered that first day when she had been so struck by Urs’s, for want of better words, rear view. It was still just as impressive! She coloured at the thought … her a happily married woman and still thinking such thoughts.

She looked down into the baby carrier by her feet. Eloise slept on blissfully. She was still tiny, barely three months old and her needs still centred around food, love, clean nappies and sleep. She had just begun sleeping through the night so, with a liberal slice of luck, she wouldn’t require feeding until they reached their destination. Emily watched her tiny chest rising and falling and smiled as the baby emitted a small sigh in her sleep. The soft hair was already forming into wispy little auburn curls. And she had mama’s eyes too, daddy always said so.

*****

This then was how it was meant to be; a man and a woman thrust together by life’s vagaries and then left to make it work … or not. And they had survived against the odds. Many had counselled caution or at least patience in their relationship but Urs and Emily knew what felt right to their hearts. So they pushed the boundaries and the misgivings of others aside and here now was the proof that they had been right all along.

Urs turned back to his wife and watched as she tenderly brushed at their baby daughter’s curls with her fingers. He wasn’t sure if he had really known what love was before he met Emily, given the extent of his feelings when he looked at her. Now, also, they had their two beautiful children to solidify the bonds of their love even further. Life was complete.

Emily looked up and locked eyes with her husband. She rolled the thought around her mind, never tiring of it … husband. And now there was also their babies, beautiful proof of their love.

As she always did when she contemplated her lovely family, Emily felt a surge of warmth and love. Sometimes, though, she felt that she had no right to be so happy but then she remembered how adversity had set her and Urs on a path that had come to this fruition. Living with the chance that life may be snatched away gave each of them a lasting appreciation of the things that matter. They lived whole-heartedly … they loved whole-heartedly and together they armoured themselves in their joy without any cause for regret. Life was good … and life with good love was to be cherished to the ends of time!


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