The President's Son Ch. 05byDWSimon©
James sat in the corner of his cell, aching, tired, scared, and let the darkness envelope him. They had left him alone for an hour, not enough to really rest, but at least he was no longer being hurt. At random moments, his muscles would twitch and spasm. The cold in the room didn't help matters either. The bastards had Alec down the hall, doing who knew what to him. James tried to find a comfortable space on the wall to lean against, but alas, found nowhere that was any more uncomfortable than any other.
The electric shock had caused him to lose bladder control, and so James sat naked against the floor, shivering. And yet, no matter how uncomfortable, how much he hurt, his mind kept going back to New Years and the hours he spent with Malcolm. As long as he had his sweet memories, the horror wasn't quite so bad, didn't hurt quite as much. James would always remember how sweet those stolen kisses, those hurried touches, those soul-shattering sensations that coursed through his body.
The door opened, and Alec was tossed into the room. He still had his shirt and trousers on, and at least he wouldn't be as cold. The door shut with a final clang, and whatever night vision James had gathered was lost in the glaring hall light. He shut his eyes, listening, and heard Alec's harsh breathing. "Are you okay?"
Alec took a deep breath and swallowed deeply, so loud in the room. "I'm scared."
"What do they want?"
James shook his head, even though Alec wouldn't have seen it. "Nothing, according to the leader. They just want to prove a point."
Alec scoffed a loud breath and inched his way closer. "What point?"
"That national security isn't strong enough."
Alec reached out with his hand, touching James's arm. "Where's your shirt?"
James shuddered with cold. "They took it right away."
Alec's hands moved over his arms. "You're freezing."
Alec moved closer and wrapped his arms around James. His hands rubbed up and down James's arms, chaffing heat into him. James tried not to melt into the warmth, but he was very cold. As Alec wrapped his arms around James, Alec rubbed his back and soon discovered James's nudity. "What happened to the rest of the clothes?"
James started to pull away, embarrassed. "The electric shock... I lost... I pissed myself."
Alec pulled James closer and continued to stroke his back. "I'm sorry that this is happening. All they've done is punch me a few times."
"I'm not all that worried yet about what they'll do to me. I'm worried about my family."
Alec rubbed his back some more. "I'm sure they're fine."
James pulled away. "They took videos. They'll see what has been happening."
"I'm sorry, I didn't know."
James leaned his head against Alec's forehead and whispered his biggest fear. "Malcolm will see it too."
Alec's hands froze for a second before resuming along James's chilled flesh. His thoughts swirled inside him, conflicted, hurt, angry.
How dare James think of someone else when he was taking care of him. How dare he! Malcolm wasn't there to sooth James's hurts. He wasn't there to hold him. God, he smelled good. Even after two days of sweating and fear, James still smelled like James, that elusive scent that said James. Alec felt himself stir in his trousers and for once didn't curse it away or try to hide it. James was here, vulnerable, and possibly receptive. Perhaps he should kiss him, or touch him. Alec dismissed his ideas as ridiculous. He would wait.
The door opened again and the two goons came inside and grabbed James, pulling him out the door. Alec caught a glimpse of James's nude rear and nearly moaned. The man was truly made well. The door shut, blocking Alec's view once again. The dark descended around Alec and gave him nothing but time to think.
Perhaps later Alec should try a kiss. He couldn't be all that bad at it. His wife seemed to enjoy their time alone together. Perhaps he would. Lost in thought, Alec was shaken from his musings by a loud, ragged scream.
Every morning, somewhere in the country, a new tape or envelope would appear. The first in Texas, than North Dakota, Florida, California, Hawaii, and yet not a single clue as to where they came from. The vial of blood duly authenticated as James McNeely's, the pictures of his beating; the video of his electrocution. The next tape was of James's left forearm being broken, just shy of breaking the skin. The fourth a video of James's right leg, locked down to a second chair, with a board lying on his knee as more and more weight was added until the tendons of James's knee snapped, hyper-extending the joint until the pained screams echoed through the non-descript room. The FBI watched, the world saw stills from the videos. What had been mild disdain over the young man who had been caught kissing another man on the steps of a Washington house seemed petty as the world caught sight of a brave man who slowly diminished physically, but not spiritually. Each new torture tore screams from his throat, but his head was still held high, his anger never diminished. These evil people may have the man captive, but they had yet to break his spirit. Admiration blossomed in the closed-minded hearts of those who had felt revulsion of the kiss.
The FBI worked diligently, hardly breaking in their search. But the leads fell flat. No one knew where they were, how to find them. Every trail was cold. Every phoned in tip followed until dead ends appeared. No answers came.
As the admiration of the world grew, the hope of the family began to falter. Each briefing, the FBI had less to give the grieving, hoping, praying family. But soon, hopefully soon, the answers would appear.
James lay flat on his back on the freezing, rough cement floor. His whole body ached. His arm throbbed with each breath, his broken bones screaming with no relief. His knee swollen, his spirit nearly broken, James felt tears well in his eyes. Never in his life had he known such horrid pain. In no way could he have possibly imagined such agony.
Because of James's broken arm, his captors had provided a thin foam mattress and some blankets. He had slipped into shock twice and was running a fever. His hell was getting worse day by day. James lay quietly on his mattress, huddled under two of the three blankets. He'd forced Alec to take one. Besides, James was so cold, he doubted if a third thin blanket would have made a difference.
The men guarding James and Alec were doing something out in the hall, he could hear them, but didn't care anymore. He wanted the pain to go away. He wanted to not fight anymore. But each time he thought about giving up, he would think of Malcolm or his parents and remember that he could survive. He would survive. He was bound and determined to find out what he'd been missing all these years and have Malcolm make that journey with him.
The door to the room opened up and the leader of the goons stepped in. He held a hypodermic in his hand and a gun in the other. "We will be leaving you Captain, Lieutenant. But I want you to feel better. Are you allergic to penicillin, Captain?"
James turned his eyes to the figure in the door and shook his head. "No. I'm not."
James lay on the ground, not moving. If there was something other than penicillin in that needle, he didn't care anymore. The needle pressed against his arm and he felt the pressure as the syringe was drained. "What is happening?"
The man looked behind him where two of the goons came in and grabbed Alec. They left the room and the man leaned down to look at James. "We are leaving. As soon as we're far enough away, we'll send the coordinates so the two of you can be picked up."
James shook his head. "Why?"
He laughed. "I told you Captain, we didn't want to hurt you permanently. We proved our point. Nothing more."
James started to feel warm and lethargic. He stared at his arm with alarm. "What did you give me?"
The man shook his head and smiled. "A cocktail of antibiotics and some morphine for the pain. I wish I could leave you more, but it will help until the FBI arrives." The man took James's right hand and shook it. "It has been a pleasure, Captain. You are a remarkably strong man."
James's eyes rolled in his head, the morphine hitting him hard. "Forgive me for saying so, but fuck you!"
The man just chuckled and stood then left the room. James simply lay there, feeling the pain in his arm and leg slowly fade until he felt nothing at all; nothing but a gentle floating feeling, rocking his body. For a second, he felt all dizzy and tingly, kind of like after he'd kissed Malcolm. The door opened and Alec was pushed back into the room. James barely registered the motion. Giggling softly, James held up his right arm and smiled. "I've missed you Malcolm."
Alec stared at James, his hand stretched out to him, inviting. He nearly swallowed his tongue. They were alone. They had promised him at least twelve hours. A lot could happen in twelve hours. Alec stepped further into the room, avoiding James lying on the thin mattress. The bruises on his face stood out in sharp relief. The weight he'd lost only made his face more angular. The beard stubble growth on his face manly, Alec could only marvel at his beauty.
Kneeling down, Alec almost take James outstretched hand when James's voice stopped him. "I've missed you so much, Malcolm."
The words sent all the heat pooling in Alec's veins to his head. Fury, the likes of which never known before, took root in Alec's head. How dare he? Malcolm wasn't there with them, going through the hell they'd been through. Where was Malcolm when James was freezing cold, battered and hurt, trying so hard to be brave. Alec had been there. Alec had held the freezing man. He'd helped him get comfortable. He'd been there. Not Malcolm. Alec.
And since Alec had been there for him... James's love should be for him. Cupping James's face, Alec slid down to lie beside James, and pressed his lips, a bit roughly, to James's.
Malcolm stood in the rotunda balcony, staring into nothing. His body had long since given up the adrenaline rush of fear. Now he was just numb. He really appreciated the President's invitation to stay here with the family. This way, he could get the latest update on the search for James. He never thought he'd feel like this. They had just met two weeks ago. They hadn't even gone to bed yet. Why was he so worked up over this? The guy was gorgeous and a quick learner. Just remembering that last kiss before James had left for the airport made Malcolm need to adjust himself. What was he feeling? He had never felt like this before. Not once. He felt as if a part of him were missing. Was this what love really was? He thought he had been here before. Hell, he'd lived with Jason for three years. But looking back, he had to admit that at most, he was only deeply in fondness with him. Which probably explained why their breaking up hadn't hurt for very long. Hell, the thing he missed most was the sound system. Malcolm looked to the sky, rolling his eyes, wondering how the hell he ever had a coherent thought when all his mind did was wander along the most bizarre tangents.
His introspection was interrupted when Mrs. McNeely stepped out to join him. She lit up a cigarette while Malcolm watched from the shadows. He didn't want to intrude. It was well documented that Madeline McNeely had given up smoking many years ago. If it hadn't been for the startled bird flying very near Malcolm's head, Madeline would never have known he was out there. His little gasp made her turn to him.
She couldn't hide the guilty look on her face.
"Fourteen years without a single puff. Oh well, we all fall off the wagon."
Malcolm felt really guilty for intruding. "I won't tell anyone Mrs. McNeely."
She rolled her eyes better than most ten year olds. "For the last time Malcolm, call me Madeline or I'll take you over my knee."
They both burst out laughing, letting it slowly die out, both grateful for the break, but once it was over, the gravity of the situation quickly came back. Madeline held out her pack and offered one to Malcolm. He'd tried once in high school and hadn't liked it. But at this point, he'd try anything. As soon as the cigarette was lit and he tried inhaling, he remembered why he didn't do this. He coughed and sputtered and choked on the acrid smoke. His eyes were tearing. Madeline started laughing. Malcolm did too. She patted his back and they both laughed. But soon the laughter turned to tears and they were both hugging each other. Finding a bit of comfort for the moment. Both lost but finding companionship in the love they shared for James.
It was almost dinnertime in Washington when there was finally word. The FBI had found them. They raided a compound in Alaska that morning and found James and his Lieutenant. Sam had taken all but Malcolm, Madeline and his father into the dining room for a subdued late lunch when the FBI arrived with a report. He announced that James was on his way to Bethesda then handed the report to the President before walking out. Madeline got up to go get the rest of the family while the President started reading. He stopped her before she left the room. Malcolm watched as John McNeely's hands shook and his eyes flood with tears. Madeline walked back, reaching for the papers. He slapped them down on the table and grabbed her shoulders, looking at her.
She tried to shake free. "What happened? He's my son too. I have a right to know!"
He shook his head, his body trembling. "No. You don't want to know this. Never. No." He hugged his wife and shook with the sobs that overtook him. Malcolm stared at the report, repulsed and intrigued. Before he knew it, he'd taken the papers and started reading. His throat tightened with each passing word. His hands shook and he didn't realize that tears were streaming down his face until he could no longer read what he held before him. He looked up at the couple before them, lost in their grief.
He left the room, going outside onto the rotunda balcony, the scene where so many of his recent precious moments took place. He leaned over the rail and let the tears fall. He didn't know anyone was out there with him until he felt the hand on his arm. He looked up into the eyes of the President, realizing that the man had aged greatly in such a short time. "I'm sorry Mr. President. I shouldn't have intruded by reading that report."
John smiled at the young man before him. He had always had a problem with the intended spouses of his children. Not because they were bad people, but because they were taking his children away. It took time of course, but he always came around. Malcolm had proven himself the last few days. The man was a rock. He might be scared of his feelings and really not have a handle on them, but he didn't doubt the depth of them either. John looked at Malcolm really for the first time as a member of his family. "I think after all this you could call me John."
Malcolm gave a weak smile through the tears. "Okay, John. I'm still sorry."
John's voice was still raw from his grief. "You'll come with us to Bethesda. We'll leave in a few minutes."
Malcolm swallowed and looked back into the room. "Will Madeline be okay?"
John nodded his head. "She's a lot stronger than you might think."
Malcolm smiled a bit. "No matter what, it's a hell of a way to lose your virginity."
John looked sharply at Malcolm. "But... the two of you? I mean the New Year's thing in the papers."
Malcolm gave a sad smile and shook his head. "He wasn't ready. So we decided to wait until he got back from this tour."
John looked down at his hands. He really had no idea what to say. The arrival of the helicopter brought him out of his musings. He clapped Malcolm on the shoulder and the two men walked away. Madeline joined them before they stepped out on the front lawn. As they sat in the helicopter as it flew over Washington, heading into Maryland, the media machine was working, announcing the retrieval of James McNeely. Over the next few days, the world would slowly learn the who's, what's, where's and why's of his abduction. The sympathy and outcry would be deafening. But no one who sat in that helicopter cared. They were only concerned with the man they were flying to see.
* * *
Admiral Allen Johnson stood by the helicopter pad, waiting for his patient to arrive. The preliminary workup from the field medics was sketchy at best. He knew who his patient was. The entire world was waiting for his rescue. He was coming here. From what he could piece together, the boy was a mess. The whir of the helicopter blades was heard long before the aircraft was in sight. The Admiral looked up as the helicopter flew into view, touching down quickly with very little bump. That alone made Johnson worry. These helicopters went fast and often bumped down. The fact that they were so careful either meant that this was some hotshot pilot wanting to impress the President, or else his patient was worse off then he was lead to believe.
Johnson and his team rushed to the doors of the helicopter, taking their patient on a gurney as the medics followed, listing what had been done and a rundown of the man's vitals. Blood pressure was a bit low, but not too serious. The glucose would help with both the dehydration and malnourishment. Admiral Johnson looked down into his patient's face, and the sight was bad. Not as bad as field work in the jungles of Vietnam, but bad enough. Captain James McNeely's eyes were sunken and rimmed with black bruises. The blue eyes were open and staring at nothing. His lips were cracked and torn, bruised and bloodied. A blanket covered his torso to mid chest, but it didn't hide the bruising. The right arm was swollen, broken. Whatever had happened to this man, his brain was shut down, unable to cope. There was an FBI agent that ran next to the gurney, dogging their steps to the elevator. The medics stood at the back, ready to answer any more questions that he might have. But the Admiral was more interested in what the FBI agent might have to say.
"What happened to him?"
The agent looked at the doctor and weighed how much he should say. "We're still piecing together the facts."
Johnson rolled his eyes and got angry. "I don't give a shit about who knows what or when or why! I only care about what happened to his body. If I don't know what happened, it will take me longer to figure it out. That is time wasted that he doesn't need to spare." His eyes got cold as he stared down the man from the FBI. "I understand that crimes have been committed here and that you are doing your job, but I could care less about the press or National Security. This man needs all my help and I'm not stopping until he's well. But God damn it, make it easier on us."
FBI agent Stan Baxter looked at the Admiral and decided it didn't matter. What he had seen earlier that day would never leave him. "From what we can tell, his captors worked him over for about six hours, then gave him two hours of rest. It started out simple, some punching and hitting. By the second day, it devolved into electric shocks. At some point they broke his arm. They then dislocated his leg at the knee." Baxter swallowed hard. "They left him in his cell where he was raped. Raped repeatedly."
Johnson nodded and mentally tabulated the tests and procedures that would be needed once they got to emergency. "Thank you for this. It helps. It should also speed things along once the President gets here." Johnson looked Baxter straight in the eye. "Does he know?"
Baxter nodded and felt uncomfortable. "The report was sent ahead. The President has a pretty good idea about what happened."
The elevator doors opened and the medical team moved into the exam room and Johnson started barking out orders. Baxter stood in the hall, dreading what was to come next, knowing he couldn't leave until he'd reported to the President. The medical team worked for over an hour with preliminary tests, X-rays and blood work. All the while, James McNeely didn't so much as blink his bright blue eyes.