They talked for what seemed like hours. Elena tried hard to understand how someone like Nikita could possibly defend let alone work for Section. It grew more and more apparent that it really wasn't by choice that you were first brought there then forced to work for them or die and she found herself filled with a sadness for the beautiful blonde sitting beside her. How awful it must be to never have the chance to experience everything that she had with Michael, a life, marriage and a child. Even if it had all been something of an illusion, while it existed it was real to her and she couldn't imagine life without Adam. She told Nikita as much and then it occurred to her how awful it must have really been for Michael to lose both of them.
"He almost got himself canceled several times Elena, I found him watching the videos you both had taped when you were planting the tree together?" she wanted her to recall that special time.
"Yes, Michael was always planting things around the house," she smiled. "He wanted Adam to appreciate nature and to give back more than he took from the world" she sat back more confused than ever. "What will happen to Jurgen if I help you get free?' the question caught Nikita totally by surprise.
"I don't... Section isn't going to simply forget about him," no sense lying now. "But maybe Madeline would..." but Nikita was shaking her head. "Madeline wants nothing more than to see me and Michael destroyed along with Section" she quickly stated. "I don't care what the relationship is between them, Madeline is using Jurgen's hatred of Section to get to all of us"
Elena stood up and paced the room. "But she's his sister…" she didn't want more blood shed.
"Trust me Elena, she's using him. Madeline only cares about herself" she turned and rested her elbows on her knees. "I know you want to believe that somewhere family matters but it doesn't in this case" she followed Elena's movements.
"What will happen to me and Adam if I help you?" she wanted it all laid out.
"I honestly don't know" Nikita's voice sounded desperate. "Section is ruthless and if they know that you were involved with Jurgen they would use that to their advantage." She couldn't see a way that they would be able to guarantee her safety from either Section or Madeline.
"Maybe Michael could take us away..." she sounded almost hopeful.
"Elena, Michael is Section's property. He's one of their best operatives and they won't stop looking for him until they find him and cancel him. It doesn't work like that for us, there is no happily ever after for any of us," she knew it was scaring the woman but she wanted her to know what they were up against.
"But I can't let Jurgen kill you and with what you've told me about Madeline, I don't want her to get you either" she felt the same friendship for Nikita that she had when they'd first met. Both felt that they had reached an impasse to helping each avoid a difficult and possibly deadly situation.
Michael and Davenport were left alone in a room that was vacant except for a rather oversized big screen television and two chairs. "Looks like they were expecting us?" Davenport tried to joke but Michael was busy looking for any possible means of escape. "Wonder what they watch on this?" he moved over to the screen and as he touched it the television came to life. On the screen they saw Jurgen entering a room filled with every imaginable toy scattered across the floor.
"Hey, where's my boy?" he called out, a huge smile covering his face. From somewhere off camera Michael heard the familiar voice of his son and at that moment he felt as if his heart was being ripped out.
"Daddy!" he screamed as he ran into the open arms of Jurgen who quickly scooped him up and embraced him in a bear hug while the boy plastered kisses on his cheeks, laughing the entire time. "Did you bring me something?" his big brown eyes opened wide with his inquisitiveness.
"Have I ever forgotten you?" he half turned to smile at the screen, well aware of the distress he was causing for the unseen man in the other room.
"Nope, never" the boy grinned a big positive smile.
"Michael?" Davenport first called to him to try and get his attention. He saw the anguish clearly written on the man's face. "Is that your son?" Michael took a deep breath and nodded. "Beautiful child" he couldn't think of anything that might bring him comfort. "He called him daddy" Davenport wasn't sure if he had heard a sob coming from the operative's direction. "He's using him to get to you Michael, don't let him play you like that" he knew it would have been useless advice for him had he been in Michael's shoes.
"He's my son not his" his voice raised slightly "Section took him from me and now he's in the hands of a mad man" you could clearly see the anger etched on Michael's face. "I'll kill him when I get the opportunity" he promised and Davenport didn't have any real reason to doubt it.
"Just wait until you get a clear chance." Michael nodded in agreement yet never took his eyes off the screen.
"Adam, did you make anything for Daddy today?" he continued to play up to the camera and clearly the boy enjoyed the attention that Jurgen reigned on him.
"I made you a picture, and a castle out of my building blocks" he smiled proudly as he displayed each work of art.
"I am so proud of you, who loves you Adam" again he smiled to the hidden camera.
"You do Daddy, you and Mommy." he laughed as he was drawn into another embrace.
"Who's your favorite Daddy?" the torture continued and each question seemed to draw the invisible knife out only to be plunged in further with each answer.
"You are, you're my only Daddy silly" Adam laughed a huge deep belly laugh.
"Yes, I am and Daddy loves you very very much" he kissed him as his eyes remained glued to the camera.
Michael wiped the tears from his eyes unashamed of the way he was feeling. He loved Adam but at that moment he wished that he had failed Section and that his son had never been born into a life of lies and deceit. He had hurt so many people in the name of Section and right now he didn't know who he hated more, them or himself? He had loved and married Simone but was not able to save her not only once but twice, both times a casualty of Section missions.
How many times had he lied to Elena? Where he worked, where he was supposedly going when he had to return to Section. The only thing that was not a lie was the joy he felt at seeing his only son born but the rest had been an illusion and in the end, both his marriage and his ability to be with his son was another casualty of a Section mission. He wondered more and more about the man he had become. He was ashamed of how capable he was of using women to get what he wanted.
Hadn't he been using Elena all along to get to her father? And Nikita, how many times had he professed to love her, need her and want her only to use her both mentally and physically then discard her like used chattel? His heart broke more and more as he realized what a pathetic existence Section had forced upon him. Was it weakness or fear that kept him performing like a trained monkey? He wondered if it hadn't been some kind of ego boost to see how much he could get away with. Was he really proud of what he had become in Section? He didn't have the answers anymore and the blackness that filled his soul before Nikita had 'saved' him threatened to well up and destroy everything good that had started to come forward since she had.
"Do I even have a soul anymore?" he wondered aloud taking Davenport by surprise.
"Do any of us?" Davenport asked with all sincerity.
At that moment Michael started to think that maybe it would be better for everyone if he allowed Jurgen or even Section for that matter to cancel him. He knew that Nikita would have been disappointed in his thinking but then again, what was new? He was a constant disappointment to her wasn't he?
While Nikita and Elena were speaking and trying to decide what their next move might be, both were startled by the sound of Jurgen's voice over the intercom. "Elena, bring Nikita to the conference room please" more of a command than a request and Elaine silently asked Nikita what to do. "Go along with him and see what he has planned" she whispered to her. "Okay" she answered him then both headed out the door.
Jurgen met them just outside the door and instructed Elena to go to Adam and wait until he needed her to bring him in. She thought that he was going to reunite Michael with his son and smiled at the idea never fully aware of just what he had planned. Since he had never hurt either of them, she had no reason to think that he would now and simply decided to follow his instructions.
"And Nikita?" she didn't want to put her friend in anymore danger.
"Don't worry, she'll still be here when you come back" he smiled knowing she was unaware of just what he had planned for all of them. Jurgen took Nikita by the arm and pulled her into the room behind him. Michael and Davenport appeared fine except that she noticed the strange expression on Michael's face. Something warned her that if anything were going to happen this would be place that if would most likely happen.
A few moments later, Jurgen crossed the room and paged Elena "Bring him to me please?" he smiled at the three operatives then crossed the room once again and waited just inside the door. When they entered the room, Nikita noted the sickening look that crossed Michael's face as both father and son stood before each other.
Adam had no visible reaction to seeing him at first although both Davenport and Nikita saw the clenched fist of Michael's drawn tightly to his side. Adam looked at Jurgen than at Michael as if trying to decide whom he should go to. Confused, he simply stood beside his mother leaving Michael standing between them and Nikita. Nikita who was both stunned and sickened by the game that Jurgen was now playing. On his other side stood Elena beside the one thing that mattered more than anything in the world to him, his son Adam.
Jurgen walked forward and casually handed Michael a gun. "Be careful, it only has one bullet in it and before you decide to use it on me, you'd better hear what I am about to say" he turned to everyone making sure that all eyes were upon both him and Michael. "I've decided that I am going to allow some of you your freedom," they all exchanged confused glances. "Not everyone will leave here alive tonight" he continued with an evil smile clearly showing on his face.
"Why shouldn't I just kill you?" Michael brought the gun up toward Jurgen's head.
"Because you wouldn't want your son to see you kill the man that has been more like a father to him than you now, would you?" he started to play Michael like a chess piece. "Especially in cold blood Michael?" he laughed a deep sadistic chuckle escaping his lips. "Besides, if you kill me, none of you will get out alive" he was hoping that Michael would believe him and from the looks of things, and by the fact that the gun was once again dropped to his side he knew he had succeeded.
"It seems that the rules have changed once again Michael." Jurgen walked back and forth in front of the four of them. Davenport stood by unable to assist them. "Your choices have changed dramatically don't you think?" he laughed when he saw Michael's shoulders heave.
"Please don't do this?" he barely heard the whisper from Michael's mouth and even Nikita wasn't sure exactly what she had heard.
"Speak up Michael." Jurgen commanded. When Michael raised his head, not only Jurgen but also everyone else in the room saw the tears streaming from his eyes.
"I said please don't do this," he begged. "Don't do this to them," he looked into the eyes of the man he once highly respected.
"Michael, I'm not doing anything," he grinned "Not only is the decision entirely yours but it will be your job to carry it out," he laughed while continuing to pace.
Michael stared at the gun in his hand then his eyes turned to not only Nikita but the beautiful chestnut eyes of his only son. "Here are your choices Michael, you can kill Nikita and save you and your son and his mother" he heard a sob escape Michael's lips. "You can kill Adam and save yourself and your precious Nikita but where will that leave Elena?" he saw the pain this was causing and relished having the upper hand over the only operative that he felt could have ever bested him. "Or, you can kill yourself and save the three of these beautiful yet innocent creatures," he reached out a hand to caress Nikita's cheek and she pulled back in disgust.
"Michael no!" he heard the anguish in Nikita's voice.
Michael stared at his son. "Papa I've missed you" the little boy smiled a huge innocent smile of a child totally unaware of what was being demanded of his father. He turned to Nikita, her eyes were wide and pleading.
"Jurgen please, don't make him do this?" she stepped forward and pleaded with him. "Please?" she touched his shoulder "You promised that no one was going to get hurt," she reminded him. He turned to face her and what she saw written on his features made her skin crawl. "I promised you that I wouldn't hurt you myself," he was actually enjoying this. Two of Section One's best operatives at what was probably their biggest dilemma of their lives. "I can't decide for Michael, that decision is reserved for him exclusively."
Michael brought the gun up, first it was aimed at Nikita but his hand wavered "Michael no." she cried. He half turned to his son and stared at him for what seemed an eternity. "Michael, you can't do that, it'll kill you," she screamed as if reading his mind. Finally he brought the gun up to his own temple.
"Damn you Jurgen" she stepped in front of Adam to shield him with her own body. "Michael listen to me" she pleaded. She saw the blank stare beginning to cover his features yet the stream of tears continued to flow. "You don't want to do this, please there has to be another way," she cried and her voice was wracked with the deepest anguish Michael ever remembered hearing.
"Nikita, Adam I am sorry," he broke, then and there his body betrayed him and his chest heaved with the heaviest of sighs and sobs. "I'm so sorry for what I'm about to do," he turned to them pointing the gun in Nikita's direction. Her mouth silently mouthed the 'no' that she was too stunned to actually say. "There's no other way."
Jurgen stepped between them as Michael brought the gun back up to his head. "Do it!" he taunted. "Do it Michael, save them" he goaded him. "Think about all the times you've used her, how many times have you told her you loved her only to turn around and betray her?" he knew he was pushing Michael to the very brink. "Do it!" again the taunting as Michael's finger curled on the trigger. "And your son, you just left him behind not knowing if you were alive," he toyed with Michael.
"Do it, pull the trigger, go ahead, no one will miss you." Jurgen moved closer as he continued to force Michael's hand. If he had been paying attention, he might have seen Michael's free hand reach out and grab him. Before he could respond, the arm pulled him near, the gun was brought muzzle directly between Jurgen's eyes and the trigger was pulled. Blood and brain matter splattered everywhere as Michael smiled into the surprised yet very dead eyes. "I would miss me," he dropped the body to the floor as Nikita did her best to shield Adam from witnessing such a carnage.
Elena did her best to shield her son's eyes from the still and bloody form of Jurgen's body lying in a heap on the floor. She had screamed as the weapon had been discharged then gasped as she saw that it was Jurgen and not Michael collapsing to the ground. Michael stared at the body and at the gun in his hand while his inner demons tormented him with the realization that his son had just witness him killing a man who had obviously been somewhat important to him.
"Michael?" Nikita saw the look of something between disgust and terror cross his face and came up along side of him. "You didn't have a choice, he didn't leave you any," she reached out to touch him and was startled by his response.
"Don't" he pulled his arm away as if her physical contact actually caused him pain.
"But" she stepped closer
"Please Nikita, don't touch me, not now" his eyes filled with tears as he tried to balance what he had done against what he could have done. "Adam?" he side stepped around Nikita and moved closer to his son who only looked up with terror stricken eyes and scurried around his mother seeking protection. "Adam, it's me, Daddy" he crouched down and put the gun on the floor behind him. "Adam, Daddy won't hurt you" he extended both arms and waited.
"No, Daddy's dead, you killed my Daddy" he screamed and Nikita could see that this sudden reaction to Michael ripped at his very soul.
"Michael, he's confused, he doesn't remember" Elena started to make excuses. "It was so long ago" she smiled but kept a supportive hand on her son's shoulder.
"Adam, the man on the floor is not Daddy, I'm your father." He pleaded with the terrified youngster "don't you remember when we planted trees together?" he wanted so much to draw him into his arms and hold him tight at the same time wondering if a monster such as himself deserved the love of this innocent child.
"Adam?" Nikita's soothing voice carried over his fears and he turned to her. "Adam, do you remember me?" she came over, scrunched down and reached out her hand to him. "Maybe" he whispered and gave a shy smile. "Of course you remember me. I came to visit when you lived in the beautiful home with Mommy and Daddy" she smiled as he allowed her to finally touch his hand. "Come here?" she gently drew him closer and he let her. "That man was very kind to you because your real Daddy had to go away when Grandpa died, remember when your Grandpa died?" and Adam nodded silently. "Daddy had to go away to protect you from bad men and that is when Jurgen came to be with you," she continued cautiously. "He came to watch over you and Mommy until your Daddy could be with you again. Do you remember your Daddy?" she hugged him to her, never taking her eyes off Michael.
"That's my Daddy?" he asked as he finally pointed in Michael's direction.
"Yes, honey, that is your real Daddy" she gently kissed his cheek then turned him toward Michael who had never stopped staring at him. "Adam?" he whispered in a choked voice. "Adam I love you" he smiled hoping that Adam might know this to be true. Adam stopped long enough to process everything he had seen and heard tonight before finally closing the gap between him and the waiting arms of the father who never allowed himself the belief that they would ever see each other again.
"Daddy," he smiled as he planted a kiss on Michael's face. Michael looked up at Nikita and the tears were overwhelming. "Thank you," he mouthed as he pressed his cheek tighter to the little boy's. Nikita sat down and watched the interaction between the two. Elena had her hands over her mouth in stunned silence. She couldn't believe that Michael was alive and reunited with his son and worse yet, she couldn't believe that Jurgen who had treated her with nothing but kindness had in fact only been using her to get to Michael. "You know you can't stay here?" Nikita addressed the question to both Michael and Elena.
"I know," came the now familiar terse answer from Michael. "I have to make sure they are safe" he still believed that he could protect them from Section.
"Michael, as long as they are with you they will never be safe." Nikita hated to point out the obvious but knew that Section would never allow Michael his freedom and they would do their best to find Elena and Adam if they knew that having them would keep their number one operative in line. "We could go somewhere, change our names...." Elena started to sputter. "No, Michael, you know what you have to do." Nikita's heart broke as she spoke the words.
"You can't expect me to kill them?" he looked at her and in the briefest of instants, Nikita couldn't believe that Michael would even think that was what she meant.
"Can I see you outside?" she hissed and her sudden change in demeanor startled Michael. "Now!" she turned and left the room.
Michael hesitated before returning his son to Elena "Take him somewhere else, he doesn't need to see this," he motioned to the still form of Jurgen. "I'll come for you in a little while" he smiled trying to make her relax. "I promise, it will be okay" he gently moved them toward the door.
Nikita was pacing like a caged tiger as Elena and Adam followed by Michael came out of the room. She waited until they were well out of ear shot to start in. "What the hell kind of monster do you take me for Michael?" she screamed and he stepped back caught off guard. "How could you even begin to think I would tell you to kill them?" she continued, arms flapping with each word. "Don't you realize I know what they mean to you?" she stopped, looked into his face then continued to pace a disgusted look covering her face. "I can't believe that you even thought for one moment..." she raved on and on. "Forget it, obviously you really don't know me after all do you?" she hissed.
The anger of the entire situation and the realization that in the blink of an eye, Michael could have been taken from her forever made it next to impossible for Nikita to stop. "I love you, do you understand that?" she stopped directly in front of him, eyes locked to his. "Do you?" she screamed in his face to drive the point home. "Do you really think I would want their death on my conscience?" she continued only inches from his face. "Damn you Michael, answer me" she slammed both fists against his chest not caring if she was causing him pain. "Do you know I would give my life for you?" she pummeled him until he caught both of her wrists in his hands.
"I know, I'm sorry" he could say no more as he stared into the liquid blue pools before him. "I just don't know if I can bear to lose them again" his eyes filled with tears. "He's my son and he didn't remember me" he sobbed as he released her wrists. She quickly wrapped them around his neck.
"But he does remember you now" she smiled trying to keep eye contact. "He remembers and he loves you, same as I do, same as Elena" she suddenly pulled back taking him by surprise.
"What?" he looked confused.
"Elena, she's still in love you" she told him something that she wasn't sure he knew. "What are you going to do?" she couldn't tell him that she didn't know if she could bear losing him to Elena after everything but somehow Michael must have known what she was thinking.
"I love you Nikita, I love Elena because she is the mother of my son but it's you I love and want to be with," he knew that there would never be a way for him to live with Adam as long as Section was involved.
"Then we had better figure out how to protect them," she stated the obvious and he simply nodded.