Mr. Deneveau…..Mr. Deneveau—welcome back Mr. Deneveau.
Jake squinted as he tried to adjust his eyes to the light. The fluorescent lighting above him was like staring directly into the sun. He felt exhausted. Every muscle in his body felt sore, every part of him felt like a lifeless weight. His head felt the worst. His head was pounding. It felt like he had been struck with a ball bat; and for all he knew he might still being struck with the ball bat. His hands were at his sides and he struggled to move them. He wiggled his fingers and began to lift his hand to shield his eyes but his hand did not move more than a few inches before he felt cold steel pushing against his wrists. He attempted again with no luck. As his eyes began to adjust he looked down and he realized what was preventing him from moving his arm. Each hand was secured with a handcuff to the side of the bed.
As he began to gain more consciousness, Jake began surveying the room. It looked to be a standard hospital room. Nothing out of the ordinary. All the traditional beeping, bells, whistles and medical gear surrounded him. An IV was in his arm and was strung up to some solution slowly dripping into his veins. By the way he felt, Jake was pretty sure that it wasn’t morphine. He was in far too much pain for that.
His eyes continued to focus as he turned his head to the right. Sitting in a chair off in the corner pretending to watch the local news on the small in room television was the person behind the voice he had heard as he begin to re-connect with the world around him. “Welcome back Mr. Deneveau.” the voice said again as Jake once again began to pull at his arms trying to loosen them.
“Don’t worry Jake. You’re safe now. You had an accident. Do you know why you are here? Do you remember anything?” the voice asked as she slowly moved closer to him. Still unsure who was talking to him or how he got here, Jake stayed quiet as the woman walked towards him and was soon looming over him.
“My name is Special Agent Katherine Carr, and you have some explaining to do Mr. Deneveau.”
“OK…but first how did I get here? What happened?” asked a very confused Jake, still unsure if it was because of the blow to the head or the slow IV that was dripping into his bloodstream.
“As I said Jake, you were in an accident. But we need to know what the plan was. We need to know how to stop it. Time is running out.”
“Jake, you know what we are talking about. The boat, the briefcase and Miranda. Where are they?”
Jake gained more consciousness by the minute but still had less clarity about the situation. “I don’t know what you are talking about and who the hell is Miranda? Let me out of here. I have rights.”
“Jake- right now the lives of many outweigh your rights. Now where is Miranda?” Carr pushed down on Jake’s arm, causing a shooting pain to echo through his body. The pain was almost so intense he nearly passed out again. “Now Jake, if you don’t want to tell me where Miranda is the easy way- we can do it a much harder way.” Carr once again squeezed the bandaged part of his arm. The sharp pain returned. Jake screamed.
“Screaming isn’t going to help Jake. Only I can make the pain go away, and you have to tell me what I need to know.” Jake screamed in agony as Carr pushed down harder on Jake’s throbbing arm.
“All right! All right! Enough—I’ll talk, just let go!” screamed Jake as Agent Carr let go of his arm.
“Just hear me out. I know my name is Jake Deneveau. I’m 42 years old. I’ve been married to my wife Lauren for 15 years. I live in a small town in Kansas. I’m a teacher at a local college. I don’t know where I am now. I don’t know how I got here. I don’t know anything about any special agents, boats, briefcases, and I sure as fuck don’t know any one named Miranda. So please for God’s sake cut me some frickin slack and give me a bit to go off here!”
Agent Carr starred back at him with cold dark eyes. Jake’s plea looked as though it didn’t make the slightest impact on her life. She grabbed his arm again. Once again pressing down, she repeated herself. “Jake Deneveau- You know about the boat, the briefcase and you know about Miranda. This isn’t some sort of game. People’s lives are at stake here. And you can either tell me now how to stop this and I can stop the pain or I can keep going.” Carr’s grip on Deneveau’s arm clamped town even harder. Jake once again screamed out in pain.
“The arm is the least of your worries Jake. That’s going to feel wonderful compared to what’s next. Now tell me what I need to know. “ Agent Carr released her hand from his arm. Jake mustered up just enough to power through t pain and spit out “I don’t know what we are talking about.”
“Now you’ve done it Jake. I tried to be reasonable with you. I tried to give you the chance to come clean. I even tried to reason with you. But this doesn’t make me have to reason anymore.” Agent Carr had reached onto the bedside table and picked up a small syringe full of a blue liquid. Jake tried to struggle as she grabbed his IV line and slowly injected he blue liquid into his veins.
Jake’s heart felt like it skipped a beat. It was suddenly racing…then suddenly slowed back down. He began to feel light headed. The world went back into slow motion. “What’s happening to me?” muttered Jake as he struggled to keep his eyes open.
“It’s poison. It’s in your blood stream. It’s slow acting, but it will stop your heart eventually. Now listen carefully Jake. In the next few minutes your heart is going to stop. And I am going to jump start it again with this.” Agent Carr picked up a set of defribullator paddles. “Once I do that I’m giving you 2 minutes to talk, before I let your heart stop again. And then I’m going to jump start you again. Needless to say, eventually after enough times the poison will run its course and it won’t matter how many volts I send through your body. You won’t feel it. You won’t wake up from it. One way or another I am going to find out what I need to know or you are going to die from me trying. It doesn’t have to be this way. Where is Miranda?”
Jake couldn’t keep his eyes open. He couldn’t breathe. His heart felt slower…and slower. The room got darker and darker. And suddenly there was no light at the end of the tunnel. Jake Deneveau’s heart had stopped for the first time.
—Chapter 2 will be released next Saturday—