"What are you doing here, Doc?" she demanded.

"I came to find you," he answered, the caring and concern in his voice almost penetrating her shield, undoing her resolve. But she took a deep breath and steeled herself against him.

"Well, you found me. Now you can run back and report to Michael or Operations." She picked up her glass and took a drink. As she did, she saw the look in his eyes. Setting down the glass, she sighed.

"Please, Travis. Just go." She didnít want to beg, but if she had to, she would.

"Iím not leaving until we talk," he answered. She looked down at the table to avoid his gaze. His hand reached out and gently lifted her chin. "Please talk to me. I know youíre hurting. Let me help."

She got up and walked over to the jukebox. She dropped the money in and picked the song she wanted. Then she walked back to the table. "You really want to help?" she asked. Travis nodded. She smiled and held out her hand. "Then dance with me." Travis didnít think she sounded like herself, but went along so as not to make a scene. The music started and he took her in his arms.

I've got a funny feeling*
The moment that your lips touched mine
Something shot right through me
My heart skipped a beat in time
There's a different feel about you tonight
It's got me thinking lots of crazy things
I think I even saw a flash of light
It felt like electricity

"How did you find me?" she whispered as they swayed to the Toby Keith song she had chosen.

"I figured you wanted to disappear for a while. Youíd would want to go somewhere we wouldnít think to look for you. You like country music," he explained. She smiled and he could have sworn her words were just slightly slurred when she said, "So how did you really find me?"

Shaking his head, he smiled. "Curlly traced the tracker in your arm." She stiffened at his explanation. She glanced around the bar as she waited for his explanation. She saw them sitting at a table near the entrance.

"Iíll have to have Jace remove that when I get back," she answered and then moved closer to him.

You shouldn't kiss me like this unless you mean it like that
Cause I'll just close my eyes and I won't know where I'm at
We'll get lost on this dance floor spinning around
And around and around and around

She pulled back to look into his eyes. She caressed his face and then continued to stare deep into his eyes.

They're all watching us now they think we're falling in love
They'd never believe we're just friends
When you kiss me like this I think you mean it like that
If you do baby kiss me again

She hummed along with the song for a bit and then she smiled. He saw the devilish look in her eyes and wondered what she was thinking. It didnít take him long to find out. She looked him straight in the eye and the next thing he knew she was kissing him. And it wasnít just a quick peck - she put everything she had into it. Taken by surprise, Travis responded to the kiss at first. Once it registered in his brain what was happening, however, he quickly pulled back.

"What are you doing?" he demanded. She simply smiled at him, laid her head on his shoulder and sang along softly.

Everybody swears we'd make a perfect pair
But dancing is as far as it goes
Girl you've never moved me quite the way you moved me tonight
I just wanted you to know
I just wanted you to know

Travis began to pay closer attention to the words of the song. They fit his situation perfectly at the moment, and he had the feeling she knew it. She was deliberately baiting him.

You shouldn't kiss me like this unless you mean it like that
Cause I'll just close my eyes and I won't know where I'm at
We'll get lost on this dance floor spinning around
And around and around and around
They're all watching us now they think we're falling in love
They'd never believe we're just friends
When you kiss me like this I think you mean it like that
If you do baby kiss me again

As soon as the song was finished, Travis pulled back and grabbed her hand to drag her back to the table. He looked up as he did so and saw Michael and Nahla sitting at a table near the entrance. As he watched, Michael got up from the table and walked out, Nahla quickly following behind. ĎGreat,í he thought. Now he knew what she had been doing.

Once they were seated, Sherry reached for her drink. Travis was faster, however, and picked it up. It looked like soda, but he could almost swear she was drunk. He tasted it.
"You know," she teased, "I can order you one if you canít afford your own. Or we can ask for two straws and share." She laughed at that thought.

Travis realized that she was in deeper trouble than he had thought. Drinking was something she simply didnít do. At least that explained her behavior out on the dance floor. "Youíre drunk," he stated.

She stared at him. "No Iím not. If I were drunk, I wouldnít remember."

Now he was getting somewhere. "Remember what?" he asked casually, not wanting to scare her back into her shell.

"Anything ... everything ... " was her vague reply. Frustrated, he tried again.

"You donít want to remember anything?" his asked, his voice echoing his concern.

She smiled at him. "I know what youíre up to, Doc," she said as she tapped the tip of his nose with her finger. "Iím not that drunk. You want me to spill my guts and then you can make me delve into my inner self and uncover all my deep, dark secrets. Well, sorry, it ainít gonna happen. So why donít you go on back to Section like a good little boy, file your report, and talk to somebody who cares." She knew she had hurt him, but itís what she had to do. She had to drive him away so he wouldnít get hurt. She couldnít handle it if he ended up like Sophie.

"Iím not leaving you here. Iím taking you home," he stated in a voice that brooked no argument.

"Now that sounds like fun," she teased. "Your place or mine?"

"Stop it." He ordered. "Youíre in no condition to drive, or anything else for that matter. Iím taking you to your place and Iím going to mine," he stated matter of factly. He paid the bill and waited for her to get up to follow him.

"I donít need your help, Doc. Iím just having a little something to relax. Then Iíll go home and not remember."

Travis wasnít giving up. "Iím not leaving you here. Letís go." Finally she got up and went with him. He wanted to ask again what it was that she was trying to forget. Twice she had mentioned not wanting to remember. If he could figure out what it was, he could help her get past it. He would need to do something soon. She wasnít sleeping and she had lost weight. The fact that she had turned to alcohol made it even more urgent.

Michael was waiting for Travis outside of Sherryís quarters when he got her settled. Sighing, Travis nodded to his door and Michael followed.

"Did you learn anything useful?" Michael asked in his cold, emotionless voice. Travis could feel the tension and anger emanating from Michael, but pushed it aside. He would have felt the same way if he had been in Michaelís shoes.

"Look Michael, I didnít know she was going to kiss me. Itís not like we were on a date. She asked me to dance with her. Rather than make a scene, I agreed. I think she did it deliberately to make you angry."

Michael stared at him. "Did you learn anything useful?" he finally repeated.

Travis sighed. "Sheís drinking."

That got Michaelís attention. "Anything else?" he asked.

"Sheís trying to forget something - or rather, to not remember something. Twice she made reference to not remembering. When I asked her what she didnít want to remember, she became vague. She said, Ďnothing ... everything.í" He studied Michael for a moment and then decided to tell him everything. "I believe sheís trying to push me away. Thatís why she wanted to dance with me. Thatís why she kissed me. She knew I would get angry and back off. She doesnít want me getting close."

Michael nodded. "Thank you."

Travis shrugged. "I need to work with her, Michael. I know youíre worried about how Operations will react, but she needs professional help. Everyone is covering for her, which I understand, but itís not helping her. We need to get to the bottom of what it is that sheís afraid of."

"You think sheís afraid?" Michael asked. He wanted to help her desperately, but he was at a loss. She had all but ignored him for the past few weeks.

"Yes. Itís why she doesnít want to remember."

Michael nodded. "Could it be post traumatic stress? I thought she had worked through Corda stalking her."

Travis thought about it. "Itís possible. I thought she was through that as well. She seemed to have adjusted and gotten past it. As I said, I need some in-depth sessions with her. Could you arrange it?"

Michael nodded. "Of course. Iíll set it up now. You can start tomorrow." Travis nodded and watched as Michael walked out of his quarters.


(*You Shouldnít Kiss Me Like That, by Toby Keith.)

***************

Part 3

Madeline and Operations were having breakfast together, discussing the status of all current missions. Once the mission topic was exhausted, Operations asked, "What are we doing about Sherry?"

Madeline laid down her napkin before answering. "Michael contacted me last night. He wanted me to order her to see Dr. McAllister beginning this morning."

Operations nodded. That was interesting, Michael must be very worried. "Did you?"

She smiled. "Of course. Her panel will tell her to report to his office first thing."

"Do you think she will?" he asked as he contemplated the problem. He was going to have to make the phone call. He had put it off as long as he could.

Madeline pondered her answer. "Do I think she'll show up? Yes. Will she cooperate? That remains to be seen. I think she'll resist at first. But if Dr. McAllister is as good as his reputation, he should get her to come around."

Operations nodded again. "Let's hope he's that good. This can't continue. I'm going to have to take action soon."

Madeline nodded. "Of course. It's affecting everyone in CLHQ and key personnel in Section as well. I will speak with Michael and Northstar this morning."

"Fine. Let me know if anything changes," he ordered and then he left for the Perch.

~~~~~~~

Sherry got up from the chair in her living room where she had spent the better part of the night and went to change clothes before heading to her office.

It had been yet another sleepless night - almost. She did manage to doze off for a bit, but the dream had returned, just as it did every night. Sophie and Travis blamed her for their ruined lives. Michael was angry with her for getting kidnapped, for letting herself be used against him. Corda had entered the dream a few nights ago. He was trying to make her see what Section was doing to her -- how they were slowly destroying her.


And then last night, Duncan showed up in the dream. He was upset with her for involving him in that mission in Scotland and for asking him to set up his fellow countrymen. It didn't seem to matter to him that the man was guilty and a menace to society. Duncan was also angry with her for leaving him. They had lived together for months during that mission and then she had simply left. She tried to get him to remember that nothing had happened between them. But he wouldn't listen. Was she happy with herself, he wondered. Did she get her kicks by having men fall for her and then stomping on their hearts? "How many have there been?" he demanded and listed them as each man lined up beside him. "Me, Travis, Jarod, Harm, John. No doubt Michael will be next ... how many more will there be?"

She woke up in a cold sweat around 3:00 a.m. She had wanted to scream and throw things, but knew better. Michael and Travis would be there in a flash if she did. She had to get away from here. It was the only solution. She sat unmoving in the chair for a few minutes and then had gone to the kitchen. Reaching into the back of the top corner cupboard, she had pulled out a bottle of wine. It had been a gift to her from one of the new recruits a while back, but she had never touched it. Needing something to get her through the night, she opened the bottle and grabbed a glass. She had spent the remainder of the night in the chair, drinking the wine and staring into the dark, trying to erase the memories, wishing she could simply forget her life.

Now it was time to go to her office. Her head ached and she wasn't very steady on her feet. She couldn't face eating anything, so she had a quick glass of milk and then checked her panel. She had orders from Madeline to see Travis. "Great," she mumbled.

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