Part 5

Jan hurried into the building, waved at the guard as she passed and dove into the elevator. Her hair was a mess, she wasn't wearing any makeup and she was starving. Everyone was still at the reading table when she walked into the room and they all turned to look at her as she sat down. Jan was almost never late and Phil was never late at all so Lorne was a bit concerned. "You ok Jan?" he asked "you look like hell" She told him that she had overslept, nothing more and nothing less which he seemed to believe. "Where's Phil? Any idea's Jan?" he asked her. (Oh great, he would ask me, she thought) "Nope boss, haven't seen him." She replied. She watched as he pulled his phone over in front of him. "Well, I'd better call him at home and see where he is" Jan was panicking inside. When Brynn finds out that he wasn't working all night there will be hell to pay, she thought. Lorne picked up the receiver and just before dialing he looked over at Jan. He had a feeling that they had spent the night together and now he could read it in her petrified face. He wouldn't call Brynn but he did wonder where Phil was and was hoping that Jan would give it away with her facial expression. Suddenly the door swung open and it was Phil. If anyone noticed that he was wearing the same clothes as last night they didn't say. "I overslept Lorne, sorry" he volunteered, not even glancing at Jan. Lorne smiled "well there seems to be a run on bad alarm clocks which I suggest you either fix or buy a new one, understood?" They both nodded like little children caught with their hands in the cookie jar. "Ok then, let's get to work" and with that the incident was forgotten.

All day long they tried not to be alone with each other which was odder than anything else to the rest of the cast and crew. It was obvious that they were taking pains to avoid contact which was suspicious. Finally lunch rolled around and everyone went to grab a quick bite to eat. Jan was starving but she needed to work some more on her script so grabbed a sandwich and went into the lounge to eat. Phil did the same, not expecting her to be in there and almost turning around when he saw her. 'This is silly' he said to himself and went inside only to find that no one else was in there but them. He sat down at the table with her. "You got a call this morning" he told her "it was whats-his-name, what IS his name anyway?" Jan smiled "it's Noah" "Noah huh?did he build an ark last night?" Phil said and backed away when Jan took a swing at him. "Ok, ok no biblical jokes I promise. He said he was going to meet you after work to take you to dinner" Jan could see the pain in his eyes even though he tried to disguise it. She reached across the table and took his hand. "Phil, you have to understand something. Last night was a dream come true for me. It was the most exciting, passionate and fulfilling night of my life but?.."she trailed off deciding how to approach what she needed to say. "But I am married and you can't wait forever for me" he finished her thought. She squeezed his hand in agreement. "I would like nothing more than to have you for my own but until you decide what you want I really have no choice but to see other people." Every word she spoke was like a tiny dagger in his heart even though he knew what she said was true. He stood up and stood by her chair. "So are you saying that you never want me to touch you again? Or kiss you again? Or make love to you again?" he asked her, his voice thick with emotion. She couldn't look at him because if she did she knew her convictions would fly out the window. He grabbed her upper arms roughly and forced her to stand in front of him. He didn't care who walked in now, it didn't matter anymore. He used up more energy today trying to avoid starting rumors that he was out of patience. He took her face in his hands and before she could protest he kissed her deeply. He felt the struggle inside her, she wanted to pull away and in fact for a moment she made a feeble attempt to back away but he held on tight. Then her body went slack against his as his arms went around her and crushed her to him. It was a dizzying kiss, full of promise and passion but even as she returned the kiss she knew that the promise was impossible to keep. She knew what she had to do. It would tear her apart but he just left her with no choice. He broke off the kiss and looked down into her eyes searching for that same fire he saw last night. She stepped back from him and, holding back a flood of tears that she knew she would unleash later she slapped him, turned around and walked out the door.

Part 6

He stood there stunned, his face stinging. He couldn't believe what she just did. He felt the anger well up inside of him. Anger at her, at himself, at Brynn, at the world. He wasn't one to explode like some others but this time there was just too much inside trying to get out. He took the side of the lunch table they had been sitting at and dumped it and its contents on the floor. He picked up the sugar bowl from off the floor and hurled it the door, causing it to break into little pieces. People started coming in to find out what was wrong but quickly shut the door when they saw stuff flying. Dennis and Dana went in and grabbed Phil by the arms and made him stop. He was still seething and almost broke free from them but they wrestled him to the ground and held him down until he stopped. Jan stood in the doorway, a face in the crowd of others watching the spectacle of this normally placid man losing his grip. She put her hand to her mouth and began crying, never imagining for a moment that she could cause him so much suffering. It was so much easier when we were just friends she thought to herself. Now even that is ruined. That realization blindsided her. Now the tears really began to flow. She not only lost the love of her life but she lost her best friend too. All in one day. She headed for the door not caring if she ever came back or not. She just had to get out of there, had to get as far away as possible from Phil and think.

Dennis and Dana felt it was safe to let go of Phil so they sat down on the floor next to him. "What the hell was that all about Phil" Dennis asked him but Phil just sat with his head on his crossed arms and didn't answer. "Is it Jan?" Dana asked obviously concerned. "Yes," he said finally "and just about everything else you could think of" He was much calmer now, breathing easy and back in control. "Look, why don't you just go home, you look exhausted" they both suggested and normally he would have said no. This time however the last place he wanted to be was here. They helped him up and without looking back he left the room and the building.

Even after all that happened he was still tempted to go to Jan's place. He wanted to apologize, to make it right between them again. Losing her hurt so much. His heart and his body ached for her but she had turned the tables on him. Now she was the one who was off limits and not him. And, no matter how much it hurt to admit it, she was right. The last thing in the world that she deserved to be was his mistress which is essentially what she would become if they let it go any further. He knew that she pushed him away because she did love him and not because she didn't and that small fact was consoling. To think of her having dinner with another guy, holding his hand, making love to him was almost enough to break his heart. But then, he imagined what she had been going through thinking the same things about Brynn and him. He parked the car and went into his building, unlocking the door and letting himself in. She was in the shower so he called to her letting her know he was home. He grabbed the newspaper and laid down on the bed to read it. He barely got past the cover story when he fell into a exhausted sleep.

It was the middle of the night when his eyes snapped open. He had been having a bad dream about Jan and Brynn and Noah and it woke him in a cold sweat. He sat up and felt like he couldn't catch his breath. He couldn't remember what the dream was about just that it scared the hell out of him. He was very tempted to call Jan but the longer he sat there the more the fear faded. What it left in him was a feeling of uneasiness. After all that he went through in the past few days he wasn't surprised his sleep would be a rotten one. There was no way he could go back to sleep now. He looked over at Brynn sleeping peacefully and he wondered how desperate he felt for a way to get rid of this ache inside. He reached for her, made love to her but wondered why it didn't seem to help.

He showered, dressed and went out to battle traffic. He didn't mind it too much though because it gave him time to think. He wondered how Jan would be today, if she would even talk to him. He was determine to make it right somehow although he had no idea how to do it. First, he supposed he would apologize for yesterday and then just take it from there. They had been friends too long to give it up now. He got into work on time, sat down at the table and flipped open the script. Everyone was laughing and talking amongst themselves. "So where's your better half?" Dana whispered to him. Phil looked around the room and didn't see her. A wave of panic came over him just like last night. Lorne looked at him and he could see that something was wrong. He mouthed the words "call her" to him so without hesitation Lorne picked up the phone and dialed her number. It was busy. Must be trying to get through to us, Phil thought. They started the meeting and it was all he could do to concentrate. The words were a blur on the page. When another 15 minutes passed Lorne tried her again, but the phone was still busy. He had the operator check the line and was told that there was no talking on it. "That's strange, no one is on the line" he said to Phil.
Phil got up and before anyone could say anything to him he was out the door, grabbing his keys from out of his pocket.

Part 7

'She wouldn't have left, would she?' He thought to himself. 'Not without saying goodbye.' He tried to reassure himself that she had overslept or maybe they had already passed each other on the road and she would be sitting there when he got back. 'What if she is late because she and Noah had a long night last night?' he didn't even want to imagine that. He pulled up her place and glanced up at her window. It was shut which was odd considering how hot it was. He found himself taking two steps at a time into the building and pressing the elevator button with a bit too much force. When he got to her floor he almost ran down the hall to her door. He stood in front of it and knocked, a vague feeling of dread welling up inside. When he didn't get an answer he did the only thing he could do, he busted it down. When he stepped into her place his heart stopped cold. Everything was in dissary. The lamp and the phone were knocked over on her bed stand, clothes were strewn around the room, even the kitchen clock had been smashed in. Phil didn't know what to do first. He put the receiver back on the hook and called Lorne and told him what he saw. Then he called the police. As he was placing the receiver back down he lifted his other hand off the bed and it was dotted with blood. Moving the sheet around he saw that there was blood all through it, Jan's blood. She was hurt. Someone had hurt her. Whoever had hurt her was going to hurt even more, he vowed. He was full of energy, adrenaline was coursing throughout his body. He had to focus it and do something. He looked at his watch, it was 10:00 in the morning. Then he glanced over at the broken kitchen clock, it read 9:30. He had only missed them by a half an hour! But where would they go? Which direction should he drive in? He grabbed Jan's address book and looked up Noah's name. He lived in New Jersey. Ok, so I will head towards Jersey he thought, not even knowing if Noah was involved or not. He knew he had to get out of there before the police came or they would not let him leave so he left her place, jumped into his car and sped off.

All she wanted to do was sleep. If she slept then she could pretend that this was a dream and that she was home again in her bed. She lay in the back seat and listened as Noah and his friend talked about her. "That was a lot more fun than I thought it was going to be" the stranger said. "yeah, I told you she was a real spit-fire didn't I?" Noah laughed back. She remembered Noah taking her home and then smacking her across the mouth. She fell to the floor and from there she could see one other set of legs walk into the room. They grabbed her, threw her on the bed and did things to her that she had only dreamed in her worst nightmares. She fought back as best she could, kicking and screaming until they tied her up and gagged her. She was so angry that she didn't allow the tears to come until they really began to hurt her. She kept saying to herself that Phil would be there, that he would come and rescue her from this but then she realized that she probably scared him off forever and he wouldn't be charging through the door. She didn't know why they were doing this to her. If she spoke she was hurt more so she kept quiet. She tried to endure the pain by picturing Phil loving her but this could never be confused with love. Her wrists hurt from being tied, she could feel the rope cutting into his skin. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity they untied her. They told her that they were going to go for a little ride and that if she so much as whispered while they were taking her downstairs they would hurt her all over again. So she kept quiet, knowing that they were probably going to kill her anyway when they were done with her. She knew that no one would be able to find them and that she was truly alone in this. If only Phil were there, he would make it all better. If only?..

He headed over the George Washington bridge into Jersey and proceeded onto the Garden State Parkway. His first stop would be Noah's house although he doubted that they would be there. He had to make up time so he switched on the radar detector, said a prayer and floored the pedal. He remembered Jan telling him that Noah drove a new Chevy Camaro and that it was blue. Every blue Camaro he saw on the road was scrutinized. His anger threatened to get the best of him but he knew he would need that emotion later and that now was not the time to let it get the best of him. He had to concentrate on the task at hand. Suddenly his cell phone rang. It was Lorne. "The police are here looking for you Phil, where are you?!" he said in a panic. "Please Lorne do me a favor and stall them or send them off towards Brooklyn or something, I'm in Jersey trying to find her." He reluctantly agreed. "But Phil I need you back here. I have a show to put on and you are a big part of it. Let the police find her, that's there job" Phil knew that Lorne was worried about her too so Phil didn't take what he said in the wrong way. "Lorne, you know that I would be no good to you like this. I have to find her or at least try. If I came back now you could forget using me in the show anyway because I wouldn't be able to do it knowing she is out there somewhere." Lorne understood what he was saying and knew he was right. "OK well you just be careful, ok and don't do anything stupid" he said and hung up the phone. Phil found the exit to Noah's house and sped down the ramp.

Part 3