Part One: Lovesick

Chapter Eleven: Copper!

Well, so it was done.
Phoebe moved to close the curtains of her hotel room, tying her dressing gown around her waist as she contemplated the outcome of her plan.
"I don't know how he'll do it, or if he will even succeed." She mused. "But it's a risk worth taking. I owe that brat some pain for the events at the Reunion show. I don't know how she did it, but somehow she was behind that ghost. I swear it. Somehow I'm going to get my own back on her, and this seems the perfect way to do it. So Copper disappears - well, it's at Jason's discretion what happens to her now. I don't suppose the guy has it in him to really hurt the girl - just shake her up, take her out of Los Angeles for a convenient amount of time given Riot's planned publicity blitz for Diablo's new album, and it couldn't be better timed. Stefana has served her purpose but is out of it before she became a liability - she won't talk because she knows too well that if she did she'd end up on the wrong end of a jail sentence for what happened to Jewel's dressing room. And if Copper never comes back from her little road trip?"
She paused, then shrugged.
"Oh well. Worse tragedies have been survived." She decided complacently. "I don't suppose it would be particularly worrying for Riot and his musicians if Jewel lost their drummer. It might even work in his favour, despite the publicity."
She grinned.
"And if nothing else, it would be so very amusing to know that the daughter of one of those blessed Holograms is somewhere in the middle of nowhere, at the whims of an obsessive who wants to carry her off to Vegas and make her his wife! Oh, I almost wish I could be a fly on the wall in Raya's house when she finds out! Jetta's too! Oh, I haven't had this much fun for years!"
She chuckled, sitting down on the end of her bed.
"And the best part is that Riot and I are well out of the way. Whatever people suspect, Jason is the one implicated. It could not be more perfectly planned. That will teach those brats to dare to mess with Rapture!!"

*    *    *    *    *    *    *    *   

It wouldn't be long now.
Jason pulled himself deeper into the shadows, settling himself down to wait. He knew that this time it would all work out - hadn't Phoebe promised him that tonight would be his chance to finally meet his beloved?
She had spent altogether too long at the fiance's house. This had vexed him, but, mindful of what Phoebe had told him about the possessiveness of the Pelligrini family, he could not really be surprised. If nothing else, he had had used the time to define his plan more clearly in his head. Surely this time he couldn't get into trouble? Not if it was all being done according to the book - and hadn't that Phoebe woman assured him that he had his, and Copper's full backing?
The police? Well, they were unimportant. Jason dismissed their interest with a shrug. They had chased him before and this time he was wiser. He would steal in from the shadows and they would find no trace of him. He had been so proud of his initiative, sending her letters without licking the envelopes, since that was how they had caught him the last time. He had been so much more careful this time. Everything was going to plan.
His gaze darted across the dimly lit service station carpark to where Copper stood, filling her car with petrol. Phoebe had been right, he mused. Emptying her tank would certainly give her a reason to stop here, at the rendezvous point. And as soon as she went inside, he would make his move. Quietly, silently, so as not to disturb the other patrons. But, as the big van in front lumbered away, he realised that there were no other patrons. It was late, the sky was dark and they were alone. Even he could not have planned it any better.
Of course, he considered, she might be startled. Phoebe had admitted that she had not had time to get word directly to Copper that it was going to happen tonight. He was ready for that. Once she realised what the situation was, she would behave herself. Besides, this was how it was meant to be. And he had brought insurance, anyway.
He slid his hand into his pocket, feeling the cool steel of the revolver with satisfaction.
Not that he intended to use it, but he was used to these showbiz types.
"Who knows how temperament will take her." He mused. "I know she loves me and that we're meant to be together, but they're all show and emotion...I have to make it clear who's boss. Phoebe said she's a girl who likes adventure and excitement - and I mean to make sure she gets it! By the time that Pelligrini guy gets a clue that we're gone we'll be halfway to Las Vegas and he won't be able to do a thing to stop us! If she's married to me she can't be married to him!

Across the parking lot, Copper had finished with the petrol pump, and, with a glance behind her, she grabbed her purse off the front seat of her vehicle, banging the door shut and hurrying across the tarmac to the small shop that the station boasted. In her hurry to be out of the dark, bleak parking lot she omitted to lock her vehicle, and Jason spied his chance, slipping across the parking lot and into the back of the car.
"Good evening, miss." The store clerk cast her a warm smile. "Or should I say good morning - you're out late tonight!"
"Heading home now. I can't wait to get to bed." Copper grinned, relaxing. "It's dark outside and I don't like driving alone. How much do i owe you?"
"twelve-ten." the clerk told her, watching her count out loose change. "Nothing else I can do for you?"
"No - that's it, thanks." Copper shook her head. "I better be heading back. My friends will wonder where I am - I told them I'd be back an hour ago and I didn't envisage having to stop for gas on my way." She grimaced. "I'm sure that car eats more than my last one."
She raised her hand in a wave.
"Thanks - goodbye!"
"Bye, miss - have a safe drive home!" The clerk called.
Copper slid her purse into her jacket pocket, humming a tune under her breath as she returned to her waiting vehicle. Pulling open the door, she slipped into the driver's seat, fastening her seat belt and adjusting her mirror, starting the engine.
Checking that there were no vehicles attempting to pass her, she pulled cleanly out of the parking lot and onto the main road, reaching for the radio dial in order to break the silence of the car. As she did so, she caught a movement in the mirror and frowned, casting a brief glance behind her. Nothing was immediately apparent, however, and giving it up as overkill of nerves, she put her foot down on the accelerator pedal, switching the radio to a popular local rock channel.
"Sooner I'm home, sooner I'm safe." She murmured, tucking her hair behind her ear and reaching to switch on the air conditioning. "It's hot tonight. I can't understand why February's so damn scorching this year! By the time the end of March ticks around we'll all have melted!"
She smiled, remembering the night she had spent with her fiance. It had been a quiet night in, but Copper had enjoyed just spending the time in his company. They were so busy now, she reflected, and with everything going on, his presence was as reassuring as it was romantic.
The moonlight glinted off her engagement ring as she reached to flick the indicator on, and from the back of the car Jason caught sight of it. Indignant anger flared up inside of him. How dare he expect her to wear his ring? How dare he?
He glanced out of the window, judging how close to the Starlight Mansion they were. Still three blocks, he decided, but he could not afford to leave it any longer. He had to act now, or risk her slipping through his grasp again.
Copper's attention was on the road, and the first she knew that she was not alone in the car was when the barrel of a steel shot gun appeared between the seats, touching the side of her head and almost causing her to swerve off the road in her fear.
"Keep driving." The voice was soft, almost gentle and entirely unlike the threat that the weapon seemed to convey. "I am not going to hurt you, Copper, I just want to spend some time with you -alone."
Copper muttered a curse in Spanish, casting a terrified glance into the mirror, but she could not see her passenger's face.
"Who are you?" She managed. "Why are you doing this to me?"
"My name is Jason." The voice continued, still soft and now slightly pleading. "I told you I won't hurt you - don't be afraid of me. I love you...I would never hurt you. Really, you don't understand."
", I don't." Copper agreed, slowing the car down as much as she dared as she neared the turning for the Starlight Mansion. "And I'm sorry that you felt you had to go this far to speak to me, but really, I need to go home now. My friends are waiting - they will be worried and I wouldn't like that."
"Keep driving." The voice said quietly. "We're not going to the Starlight Mansion tonight. They might stop me from being near you and that won't do. I don't want to be disturbed, Copper. Just do as I say and everything will be fine."
There was a soft laugh, then, "Phoebe said you liked excitement."
"Phoebe?" Copper's eyes opened wide, then, "Rapture? Rapture of the Stingers? Hell, was Aaron right? Did she put you up to this?"
"Put me up to what?" The voice sounded genuinely confused. "I love you, Copper, that's all that matters. We're together now. You won't have to marry that Pelligrini creep now - I've saved you! Don't you see that? He's wrong for you. He takes you for granted. I would never do that. Never. You're a princess and he should treat you like one."
"You're tired." The man interrupted her. "And you won't want to drive all night. Keep going here...I'll tell you when to stop, but don't waste time talking. We can talk when we get there. There's plenty of time then. We have the rest of time together, after all."
"Rest of time together?" Copper echoed, then, "Hell, where are you taking me? Where are we going?"
"Oh, didn't I mention?" The man sounded repentant. "I'm sorry, I thought it was clear. Las Vegas."
"Vegas." Copper frowned. "I don't understand..."
" of course not. So sweet and so innocent, of course you don't." The voice was tender now. "To get married, of course. In Vegas, where nobody can stop us. Where nobody can prevent our love - and no Pelligrini can interfere!"
"Married?" Copper's eyes widened. "But I'm engaged to Aaron! I..."
"I told you. Forget him. You're safe from him now." the voice instructed. The gun touched against her skin again, then,
"Everything will be fine...I promise you.
Now drive."


Prologue: Downtown Los Angeles
Chapter One: A Special Task
Chapter Two: A Bitter Heart
Chapter Three: A Fan Letter
Chapter Four: A Valentine Surprise
Chapter Five: Cynthia's Advice
Chapter Six: Interception
Chapter Seven: Test Of A Friendship
Chapter Eight: Rendezvous
Chapter Nine: Cat Burglar
Chapter Ten: Phoebe's Plan
Chapter Eleven: Copper!

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!