Chapter Eleven: A Dramatic Rescue

The cry of anger and horror from the living room alerted Nancy's attention to the fact their plan had been rumbled, and, thinking quickly, she dropped the phone back into it's cradle, praying that Luca had had the sense to do as she had instructed him before leaving the safety of the car, and alerted the police to the situation. She was still not convinced that Sadie knew what she was doing, and, with memories of her money-crazed uncle in her mind, she knew only too well what a kidnapper was capable of.
"We don't know if this woman has a gun." She muttered. "So what do I do now? Get out of here and hope Sadie and Luca got the baby away from this place already? Or try and see if I can help somehow?"
She hesitated for a moment, then, hearing a loud infant squall from the garden, she made up her mind. Pushing open the lounge door, she hurried through the house to the back garden, where Sadie was frantically trying to pass Michael to the waiting Luca. She had just about managed to do so when an enraged Kelly bore down on her, grabbing her away from the fence and safety, and pushing her to the ground. Anger gave a certain glint of insanity to the woman's eyes, and despite herself, Sadie felt a tinge of fear. She had seen that look before, in the drug-maddened gaze of her ex-boyfriend, and she knew what it meant. Inwardly, her courage began to waver.
"What do you think you're doing!" Kelly's rage was complete, and she tightened her grip around Sadie's collar. "Who are you? Why are you trying to take my son away from me!"
"Luca, get Mike away from here!" Sadie shrieked, aware that the Diablo frontman was hesitating, as if trying to decide whether to jump into the fray himself. "Get him away!"
"Who are you?" Kelly seemed oblivious to anything but the fact this stranger had been trying to take the young boy away from her care. "Who sent you? Who?"
"Get off me!" Sadie struggled, her resolve hardening as she remembered exactly why she was there. As she had told herself before she had knocked on the door, this was more than simply a robbery for drug money. This was about a young boy and reuniting him with his rightful mother.
"Give me back my son!" Kelly roared. "Give him back, or I'll kill you!"
"He's not your son!"
Nancy's voice came from the doorway and, startled, Kelly swung around, sending Nancy a poisonous glare that, had looks been able to kill, would have easily laid the young composer out. "He's Michael Gabor, and you're just some nutcase who thought it'd be fun to kidnap him! That's all! He belongs with his real mother, and that's where we're taking him!"
"How dare you? He was stolen from me!" Kelly's attention was distracted and Sadie struggled free, wriggling back against the fence as she tried to regain some composure.
"Kelly, you're mistaken." She said softly. "You found the wrong baby. This boy belongs to a friend of ours - Emily Gabor. I'm sorry you lost your son, but Michael isn't Carl."
"What do you mean? Of course he's Carl! Of course he's my Carl!" Now Kelly was getting confused and, casting a sidelong glance over the rickety five foot fence, Nancy was relieved to see that Luca and Michael were no longer in view. "Lies, that's all this is! They always lied to me! They lied when they took him away!"
"Carl?" Nancy stared at Sadie in bewilderment. "Who's Carl?"
"Carl is Kelly's real son." Sadie maintained her soft, soothing tone of voice, only too aware that one wrong move would snap the woman out of her confusion and back into her unremitting rage. "Carl Arca. Isn't that right, Kelly?"
"Carl Arca?" Nancy's eyes could not get any bigger. "Blade? Blade is her son?"
"That's right, Nancy." Sadie nodded. "Kelly is Michael's grandmother."
"I...I don't understand..." Kelly sank to the ground, all anger gone as she tried to comprehend Sadie's words. " Carl..."
"Blade was raised by foster parents." Nancy remembered. "In some foster home someplace. Emily told me that. He never knew his real parents, but he was taken from them when he was small, because they used drugs - or so he thought."
"Kelly, Carl is gone." Sadie scrambled to her feet, casting Nancy a look which meant 'Get out of here.' "I'm sorry, but he's gone now. It's been a long time since you lost him, hasn't it? He's grown up and had a family of his own now. He's not your little boy any more. I understand why you thought Michael was your son, because he looks very much like you. But you have to understand...Michael is Carl's little boy. Not yours."
"Carl's...little boy? But...but he was a baby..."
Kelly shook her head in frustration. "No! You're saying all this to confuse me! You're like them...them who took him away before! Lies and more lies! I won't lose him again!"
"Sadie, look out!" Nancy shrieked, as Kelly reached for the nearest thing - a potted patio plant - and launched it at Sadie's head. The English girl moved just in time, turning to gaze in horror at the mess of ceramic and soil that now littered the patio. Kelly was advancing on her once more, the unbalanced glint back in her eyes, and in an instant, Nancy made up her mind. Launching herself across the garden, she knocked the woman off balance, grabbing Sadie by the wrist and pulling her towards the french doors.
"We're getting out of here and we're doing it together." She muttered, as Sadie turned to look back. "No, leave her! I don't care whether she's Blade's mother or not! She's dangerous and I don't want to stick around here to get either of us hurt. Luca's taken off with Mike, like you told him, and if the guy's got any sense he's called the police, so we should hear sirens soon. But, no sense in taking uneccesary risks. Come on!"
"I'm coming." Sadie sighed, allowing herself to be dragged back into the house. Nancy wrestled with the bolt on the front door, aware that Kelly could be on them at any moment.
"It won't budge!" She exclaimed. "What now?"
"Well..." Sadie bit her lip, then, "If anyone asks, Nancy, you didn't see me do this. Don't ever ask me how I learnt to do it...we need to get out of here."
"What are you going to do?" Nancy stared at her companion in confusion. "It's not an ordinary lock - you can't just stick a hairgrip in it and force it free!"
"Well, let's just say that I'm an improviser." Sadie offered a rueful smile. "Remember, you didn't see me do this."
She put her hands to the lock, carefully forcing the bolt free, then pulling open the door.
"Come on!" She exclaimed, meeting Nancy's wide eyed stare with an embarrassed one of her own. "We have to find Luca and Mike and get out of here!"
"You are full of surprises, you know that?" Nancy observed, as they ran helter skelter across the front garden and down towards Luca's waiting car as the street became filled with the sound of police sirens. "What the heck was that? You a locksmith in your spare time or something?"
"Better you don't ask. It was something Neal taught me." Sadie said vaguely. "Leave it at that, all right? The important thing is that we got Mike back...right? Let's not worry about unimportant stuff. We have a boy to reunite with his mother!"


 "I think we're all three of us raving mad."
Nancy clambered into the back of Luca's car, settling herself comfortably and then strapping herself in. "What the heck were we thinking? I told you the woman was crazy...she coulda killed you, Sadie!"
"No, I don't think so." Sadie shook her head, climbing in after her and pulling the door shut. "And we did do the right thing...didn't we? The officer in there was kinda hard about vigilante justice...should we just have kept out of it and phoned the police?"
"At the end of the day, Sadie, we got Michael back and they didn't. That's their problem." Luca responded, putting the vehicle in gear. "And to be honest, we've been tied up with all this red tape long enough. I didn't realise that the police were going to haul us to the LAPD to explain exactly what the heck we thought we were doing - and when the press gets a hold of it, it'll be crazier still. We'll be asked about this in interviews for months to come."
"He's asleep, poor little bairn." Nancy peered over the front seat of the car, eying the sleeping baby with an uncharacteristically tender gaze. "I can't believe that they wanted to keep him at the station till Emily picked him up. It's a good thing that Aunt Phyl was at Emily's when that officer called...noone would mess with her."
"Em's had a hard enough time of it already, and she doesn't want to be tied up with the nonsense we got landed with." Luca said with a shrug. "Besides, the officers know me. They interviewed me at Em's house. With Ms Gabor giving her orders, and them knowing who I was and that Emily trusts me, I guess they decided it was best giving up and letting me have my way."
He glanced at the small boy, pulling out of the parking lot and onto the main road. "And here's a kiddy who needs his Mom. Sadie, Nancy - I wanna thank you for your help. You were both real brave this afternoon."
"Sadie was the brave one, really. She kept that mad woman talking and gained her trust enough to get her to leave the baby alone in her care." Nancy remarked, as Sadie blushed. "I don't know how you talked her into it, Sadie, but next time Mom sticks us with a ridiculously busy schedule, I'm putting you on the job to talk her out of it."
"Well, I wanted to help." Sadie shrugged, embarrassed. "I lost my Mum as a kid and it affected me a lot...Mike obviously loves his Mummy, and the girl at the daycare said that Sirena adores him he should be home, where he belongs."
"What I don't get, though, is what made you concoct a scheme like that." Luca admitted. "I can't criticise it, since it worked...but what made you think she'd let you in?"
"Well, you...hear on the news all the time back home about people conned on the doorstep by fraudulent salespeople." Now there was no escaping the awkwardness in Sadie's expression. "I figured if it happened in England, why not downtown Los Angeles? It was worth a try."
"I can't believe that twisted up headcase was Blade's Mom. Boy does that explain a lot." Nancy rolled her eyes heavenwards. "Blade was a creep of the first water, but you know, now I've met his Mom, I can kinda understand why he was so damn screwed up."
"From what that policewoman said, Kelly Arca has been in mental institutions for most of the last twenty five years." Sadie said contemplatively, glad that the spotlight was off her. "I don't know what exactly made her flip out regarding Mike, but she must have loved her must have turned her mind to have him taken away."
"Sadie, Blade and his sister were taken away from their parents for good reason." Nancy said firmly. "I told you what Emily told me about them. They were bad news people and we saw enough today to back it up." She sighed. "Much as I hated Blade, I actually feel kinda sorry for him now."
"You said that Blade didn't know what happened to his folks for sure." Sadie reminded her. "If I believed the official report, Nance, my mother was killed by my father in a domestic row, but there was never enough evidence to take it to court. But I know that that didn't happen. My sisters and brothers and I were there when Mum died, and it was a crazy street fight, which the cops wanted to pretend didn't really happen at all. Dad had nothing to do with it. The official version isn't always the true one, you know."
"Well, we don't know the reasons behind why Blade was taken from Kelly." Luca said quietly. "It could have been drugs, it could have been something else...I don't suppose we'll ever know for sure, since the poor woman is evidently so confused. If it was drugs that turned her head, it's even more of a tragedy. Too many intelligent folk get messed up on chemicals these days."
"Very true." Sadie said quietly. She turned her gaze to the window at the passing Los Angeles landscape. "But it doesn't follow that all of them should wind up bad, Luca. And as for Kelly, well, I hope she gets the help she needs now. She scared me when she went for me, but I really think she believed she was defending her son."
"And speaking of sons, it's time we reuinited this one with his anxious Mama." Luca said with a smile, pulling into the parking lot of Sirena's apartment building. "Would you girls mind if I take him up alone? Em's kinda vulnerable about this whole thing and she probably doesn't want a huge audience."
"We understand." Sadie nodded. "Nance?"
"Sure, we'll head over to Misfit Music and spread the word that the kid is safe." Nancy nodded.
Luca watched the two Jewels head off towards the main road that lead to Misfit Music. He pursed his lips.
"Stef's information helped fix all of this, too." He remembered. "Even if she doesn't want anyone to know. Mind you, she's wrong about Jewel and about the fact that Diablo can't trust the opposition. We worked well as a team today...and I like both Nancy and this new girl. I really hope that, now the Topaz problem is out of the equation, there can be good relations between our two groups."
He gently lifted Michael from the car seat, causing the infant to stir and open big brown eyes as he did so.
"Hey there, little horror." Despite himself, Luca grinned. "You have no idea how much trouble you've caused today, have you?"
"Want Mama." Michael told him firmly.
"I know you do." Luca nodded. "Which is why we're going to take you to her right this second, okay? You recognise where you are? You're home!"
"Home! Home!" Michael clapped his hands together in excitement, and Luca laughed.
"Yep, you know." He acknowledged. "Good boy. Let's go see what your mother has to say about you vanishing with strange babysitters, huh?"
He headed into the lobby, hitting the button for the lift and lifting Michael up onto his shoulders. Michael seemed to appreciate this, his good spirits returned now he was in the company of someone he knew and trusted, and he giggled, gripping hold of Luca's ears and forcing the Diablo frontman to carefully unprise his fingers.
"If you don't mind, Mike, I'd rather not be Dumbo today." he teased, as the lift reached their floor and he stepped inside, pressing the button for Emily's floor. He took the small boy off his shoulders, setting him down on the floor.
"There, now you can't reach my ears." he scolded. Michael pouted.
"Up!" He protested, holding out his hands.
"Nope, not if you're gonna give me a brand new look." Luca shook his head.
"Dadda, up!" Michael insisted. Luca stared at him, dumbstruck.
"What the hell did you just call me?" He whispered, scooping the infant up in his arms almost numbly as the car reached the right floor, and carrying him out of the lift. "Hell, Mike, don't say that around your Mom...God only knows what she'd think!"
"Dadda." Michael did not seem discouraged, contentedly putting his arms around his companion's neck. He trusted Luca's grip implicitly, and, glancing at him, Luca saw that the baby's lashes were no longer damp with tears.
"But you can't call me Daddy." He murmured. "Em's made it so clear to me that she doesn't want a man in her life...she'll kill me if she hears you call me that!"
He knocked on the door of the apartment, hearing footsteps and then finding himself face to face with the unamused looking owner of Misfits Music.
"You took your time." She snapped, allowing him inside. "What took so long?"
"Settling up with the LAPD." Luca responded darkly, inwardly telling himself that he was not going to be intimidated by his friend's predatory mother. "Where's Emily?"
"Sleeping. She got upset and I figured it was best to leave her to sleep it off." Phyllis said frankly, and Luca deduced that the fiery Miss Gabor had been utterly non-plussed by her daughter's sudden show of panicked tears. "I didn't know how long you'd be and she's in no damn state to be roaming the streets. She has an image to uphold and, dammit, so does my company."
Luca stared at the older woman, a sharp retort on his tongue, but the look in the woman's green eyes belied her tone, and the retort died before it had a chance to be aired. In an instant, he understood that Phyllis' anxiety for her grandson was hidden deep within her anger, and instead he shrugged.
"Well, Mike wants to see his mother." He said quietly. "May I?"
"I'll go get her." Phyllis eyed Luca thoughtfully, then turned on her heel, heading into her daughter's bedroom. Luca set Michael down on the couch, sitting down beside him.
"Your grandma is a scary woman, Mike." He murmured, a dry smile on his face. "Don't grow up to be like her, huh? Follow your Mom's lead. She knows what's what."
A sleepy voice came from the doorway of the room, and Luca glanced up guiltily, hoping his words hadn't been heard. Sirena stood before him, dressing gown tied around her waist and red rims around tired eyes, to give away her uncharacteristic show of tears.. "Mom said you were here, and I...Michael!!"
Now alert, she hurried across the living room, scooping up her son into her arms and hugging him tightly. "Oh my God, Mike! Luca, how did you...?"
"Well, I had help." Luca said simply. "Nancy and Sadie and I stalked her house and tracked the kid down. Getting him out was really Sadie's ingenuity...I'm just glad to be able to bring him home. It would have been sooner, but the LAPD kept us and wanted to know why we took the law into our own hands. They also wanted you to go pick him up, but when they called your apartment your mother told them to let me bring him home. I don't think she wanted you going out in a panic to get to him and crashing your car."
"I don't know what to say." Sirena admitted, sinking down on the couch as Phyllis re-entered the living room. "Mom, you could've told me that the LAPD called and that they'd found him!"
"You were asleep, and I didn't fancy a bout of happy tears to follow the last lot." Phyllis said abruptly. "Now the kid's found, I'm gonna go back to the office and file the rest of the documents I should have done whilst I was twiddling thumbs here, okay? I'll leave you and lover boy here to stomach won't stand it!"
"Emily and I are friends, not lovers." Luca protested. Phyllis raised an eyebrow.
"Whatever." she said dismissively. "I've work to do."
"Thanks, Mom. For..being here." Sirena spoke awkwardly, and Phyllis received the thanks with an equal amount of discomfort.
"Well, I told you. I was protecting my investment." She said curtly. "I'll see you later."
Before either Luca or Emily could respond, she was gone, door banging behind her, and Luca sent his companion a rueful look.
"She doesn't mess about, does she?" He observed.
"She's been better support than I expected her to be." Sirena admitted. "Luca...I can never, ever, ever repay you for bringing Mike back. You do know that, right? I can't explain it, but he's my whole world. I don't think I know what to do without him there."
"Like I said, it's Sadie who was really the brave one." Luca said with a shrug. "And anyhow, Mike needed to be brought home. I'm glad I could help - I like the little tyke, you know that!"
"Yes, I do." Sirena pursed her lips, looking thoughtful. "I hope whoever it was who took him is safe behind bars now. I don't want them trying again!"
"She won't try again. They'll make sure of that." Luca assured her. "So don't worry about it. Mike is safe back with you, that's what's important."
"Yes, very true." Sirena hugged her son tightly. "Mike, I missed you. Did you miss me?"
"Mama." Michael cuddled down contentedly in his mother's arms.
"He pretty much screamed for you the whole time, so I gather." Luca grinned. "So I'd take that as a yes. He wasn't convinced by his new babysitter."
"It's funny, he didn't like her, even when I thought she was trustworthy." Sirena looked sheepish. "Perhaps he has more of the Gabor suspicious gene than I do."
"Maybe." Luca agreed. "But you were only trying to do the best for him."
"Well, needless to say, I decided a Nanny was a bad idea." Sirena frowned. "A very, very bad idea. Maybe I can't always be there, but we do okay, he and me. And we have each other, right? We don't need a stranger muscling in."
She glanced at Mike. "That's right, ain't it, squirt? We don't need any stinky Nanny!"
Michael raised big brown eyes to his mother's, then he reached out a determined hand for Luca's ears.
"Dadda!" he exclaimed. "Dadda!"

Prologue: Sadie's Voice
Chapter One: Meeting the Press
Chapter Two: A Tiny Life
Chapter Three: Sirena and Michael
Chapter Four:  A Strange Encounter
Chapter Five: Kelly
Chapter Six: Kelly Acts
Chapter Seven: A Call For Help
Chapter Eight: Luca Takes A Hand
Chapter Nine: Stefana
Chapter Ten: Sadie's Gambit
Chapter Eleven: A Dramatic Rescue

Chapter Twelve: Finale
Copper, Nancy, Sylva, Anna, Blade, Raesha, Sirena, Topaz, Aaron, Sophie, Justin, Elliot, Rosita, Luis and any other characters in this fiction which do not appear in the animated Jem series are copyrighted to me (E.A Woolley) as of January 2002 <unless otherwise specified> and are not to be reproduced without permission ANYWHERE. Jetta, Pizzazz, Stormer, Roxy, Raya and all other original Jem characters are the copyright of Hasbro Inc, Sunbow, Christy Marx and the other writers of the Jem series. The future world of Pizzazz, Raya, Jetta, Roxy, Stormer, Clash, Synergy, the fate of Jem and her memorial are all copyrighted to me. The future world of Kimber and Shana is copyrighted jointly to myself and Gemma Dawn.
The concept of 'Jewel' is entirely my own, and any apparent link with any fictional or actual person or persons of this name is entirely coincidental. Equally the characters in this fiction are not based on any real life individual.
The concept behind the future world of Danse, Aja and Craig, the idea behind Jerrica's futureworld and the split of the Holograms is copyrighted to Gemma Dawn, whose Teenangel Outsiders fiction is directly twinned with Just a Dream. The character Sammi and any of the other Teenangel Outsider characters mentioned in this fiction are entirely copyright to Gemma Dawn and appear here only with her permission.
Pay her page a visit!