“Stop it, Garrett, I’m not singing,” Ty said as he jabbed at the radio.
“How in the world did they get you to sing, anyway?” Zane asked.
“Sing where?” Cameron added, and then belatedly doubted the wisdom of making Ty any twitchier.
Ty looked at Zane pointedly. He glanced over his shoulder at Cameron. “He’s talking about baseball games,” he said to Cameron, and then he looked at Zane and spoke in a lower voice. “I just do.”
“Season’s suspended,” Zane said. “City’s refurbishing that field.”
Zane lifted one shoulder. “They called while you were gone about what to do with the Bronco.”
Ty cleared his throat and hung his head. “Are they releasing her?”
“Yeah. I had them keep her in the impound lot so you could see her one last time,” Zane said. “There’s nothing to be done.”
“We’ll just see about that,” Ty said with a determination that was almost frightening.
“You’re talking like somebody died,” Cameron said.
“She did,” Ty said without moving.
Zane glanced up to make eye contact with Cameron in the rearview mirror, and he shook his head.
“My condolences,” Cameron murmured, a little mystified. He looked over at Julian, brow raised.
Julian shrugged, a difficult action the way he was restrained, and he whirled his finger around his temple. Cameron sighed and glanced at Ty. He was starting to think Julian was right about Ty being crazy. Maybe Zane too, if he thought any of what they’d just talked about made any sense.
“Can I choose to ride in the boot, now?” Julian asked.
“Shut up,” Ty and Zane both answered.
ZANE stepped out of the second travel plaza facility of the day with Cameron in tow, taking a deep breath of the freezing air. It had begun to snow, dropping fat flakes that were already beginning to pile up.
Zane shivered and glanced back inside. It was too cold to wait for Ty and Julian out here. With a steaming hot coffee in one hand and Cameron’s arm in the other, he started for the car. He caught a glimpse of a hulking black SUV parked near the gas pumps, and something about it caught Zane’s attention enough to warrant a second glance. He slowed, staring hard at it. Even as he did so, the car started, its lights blinking on, and it pulled away from the gas pump it had been using and headed for the exit.
“What’s wrong?” Cameron asked as he watched the car drive away.
Zane pursed his lips. “Nothing. Come on, it’s freezing.”
The car didn’t give him a bad feeling, and it was the first time he’d even thought about a suspicious vehicle on their tail. It was probably nothing to worry about. They headed back to the car, and Zane secured Cameron with a little bit less vehemence than Ty had that morning. He got in the passenger side and started the car, sighing in relief as the warm air touched his skin.
They had stopped for gas and something to keep Ty’s hands busy, and Zane had been so close to buying a stress ball he’d found inside that he still regretted not making the purchase. Ty loved road trips, but he really needed to be the one driving. He wasn’t cut out for the idle, easy passage of time that was required of passengers.
Soon enough, Ty and Julian returned. Ty shoved Julian into the backseat and clanked his handcuffs into place. They were arguing. Again. Zane turned in his seat to watch them.
“I refuse to search you every time you take a piss. Refuse!” Ty was saying through gritted teeth.
“Then don’t do it, Agent Grady. It’s very simple.” Julian was watching as Ty went through the ever-increasingly complicated ritual of tying him down. If this kept up, Julian really would be riding in the trunk.
“Then stop trying to escape!”
“You wouldn’t have one modicum of respect for me if I didn’t try to escape.”
“I don’t have any for you now! The only thing I care about is getting your sorry a*s to DC so I can go home.”
Julian sighed as Ty slammed the door.
“What have you done now?” Zane asked him.
“That is a trade secret, Agent Garrett.”
Zane rolled his eyes and turned back around in his seat as Ty threw himself into the car.
“You want to drive?” Zane asked as soon as Ty sat in the driver’s seat.
“Yes, please,” Ty said in a rush of relief.
Zane grinned. “Everything okay?”
“No. They didn’t have any Cheetos.”
“Tragic,” Zane said as he took the lid off his coffee. “The coffee is fantastic, though.”
“I don’t like coffee, Zane!”
“It really is very good,” Cameron said. “They don’t over roast the beans like Starbucks.”
Zane hummed in contentment as he took a sip.
“Shut up,” Ty muttered as he jabbed at the GPS and hit the button that would continue their previous course.
The suction cup that attached the unit to the dash popped up, and the unit jumped off the dash into Ty’s lap. He flailed briefly as he fought with the charging wire, trying to disentangle it and retrieve the unit as it slid down his leg and tangled in the steering column.
Julian chuckled drily from the back seat. “Looks like she likes you too.”
JULIAN’S fingers had long ago lost all feeling, and the tingling sensation was marching its way down his arm toward his shoulder by the time the snow got heavy enough that the two FBI agents were discussing stopping.
“I think we can make it out of the storm,” Zane was saying even as Ty shook his head.
“I’m telling you, Zane, if there’s one thing West Virginia knows, it’s snow. This is a car killer, and we’re in a Crown Vic.”
“You’re saying we should stop for the night?”
“And let the snow pile up around us as Cross tries repeatedly to kill us and escape?”
“Well, not when you put it that way, Zane. Jesus.”
“I really don’t want to die in a snow storm in the middle of Indiana,” Cameron said in a small voice.
“I said it would kill the car, not us,” Ty grumbled.
“It’s… sort of the same thing, though,” Zane pointed out. “We don’t even have winter coats.”
Julian could clearly see the glare Ty shot at Zane
Julian glanced to Cameron and met his lover’s eyes. Cameron still looked worried and overwhelmed, and Julian had been trying his best to remain outwardly calm for his benefit. It was getting harder to do, though, the longer this charade went on. Both attempts at escape had been foiled, and he had to admit, he was a little surprised. He smiled and gave Cameron a wry roll of his eyes despite his concern.