DISCLAIMER: Karen Sisco and its all characters are property of Jersey Television. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
A Necessary Distraction
The marshal headed for the elevator almost in a dead sprint. Her fugitive had been sighted less than ten minutes ago in this very hotel, and after showing his photo to the desk clerk, she had a positive ID. Now, all that was left to do was arrest the man. That is, if he hadn't somehow left the hotel unnoticed.
The doors quickly closed, and Karen hit the button for the 10th floor. Pulling her weapon from her holster, she quickly checked her clip, and satisfied that she had sufficient ammunition, she slid the clip back into the butt of the gun and focused on the illuminated floor numbers.
1, 2, 3, 4, 4, 4, No matter how hard she stared at the digits, they refused to move, and the marshal suddenly became aware that the car was no longer in motion. A few seconds later, the lights went out, leaving her in complete darkness.
Slightly claustrophobic, Karen took a few deep breathes and reached for the phone on her belt. The display immediately lit up when she flipped the cell open, and she breathed a sigh of relief. Hitting the speed dial number for Amos, the marshal patiently waited for the call to go through.
When there was no sign of ringing, Karen pulled the phone away from her ear and glanced at the display. The words 'no service' were glowing in the darkness of the elevator, mocking her and her fear of small, dark places.
Her panic was given a temporary reprieve when the emergency lights came on, casting an eerie glow against the metal walls of the elevator. They did, however, illuminate the area enough so that the emergency phone was spotted immediately by the nervous marshal.
Grabbing the front panel, Karen almost ripped the small door off its hinges in her haste to get to her means of communication. She quickly picked up the phone and cursed when there wasn't a dial tone.
Desperate, she spoke into the receiver, "Hello? Can anybody hear me?"
"Marley?" The marshal asked, relieved to hear any voice, but especially this one.
"Oh Karen, am I ever happy to hear your voice. I'm stuck on the fourth floor, and I've been trying this damn phone for the past five minutes. I'd just about given up hope; my cell wouldn't work so I was counting on this phone. Were the other officers able to make the arrest?"
"Um, Marley? I don't quite know how to tell you this, but I'm not going to be able to help you. In fact, when I heard your voice, I was hoping that you'd be able to help me," the marshal explained as realization set in that she was stuck in the small metal structure with no apparent means of escape.
Closing her eyes, Karen tried to calm the rising panic that was quickly building up inside. Taking a deep breath, she muttered, "I've got to get out of here."
On the other end of the line, the detective was able to put two and two together, and ironically, she came up with the same number as the floor she was stuck on; however, her thoughts were quickly interrupted when she heard the marshal's muttered words.
"Karen, are you okay?"
"Do you want the truth or would you like for me to lie?" The brunette asked in a sarcastic tone, deciding that perhaps if she sat down then maybe the room would be bigger.
The detective had a similar notion as she also slid down the cool surface to take a seat on the hard floor. "Might as well go with the truth; we may be here for awhile."
A ragged intake of breath was heard from the other end when the redhead confirmed what the marshal had already considered. It could be hours before they were rescued.
"Karen? What's the matter? You don't sound so good."
Leaning her head back against the wall, the marshal replied honestly, "I don't feel so good, either. I really need to get out of here soon, Marley."
"Okay, don't panic. The hotel management has to be aware that both elevators are not functioning. I'm sure it'll only be a matter of time before the problem is solved," Marley offered, hoping for her sake, and especially the marshal's, that she was right.
Trying her cell once more, Marley cursed when there was no signal, and wondering if the metal walls of the elevator were causing the problem, she found herself glancing up at the ceiling tiles.
"That's a stupid idea," the detective muttered to herself as she leaned forward to study the phone. Surely, there was a way to connect to someone other than Karen in the other stalled elevator.
Thirty minutes later, Karen was at her wits end, and Marley was doing her best to calm her friend's nerves. It seemed that no one had found a way to contact them or find a solution to the problem as they hadn't moved an inch.
"How are you doing now?" Marley asked, speaking into the receiver.
"Karen?" Marley questioned as she stood up and put her hand on the wall, wishing her friend was just on the other side instead of in another car.
The detective called the marshal's name several more times, and there was with no response from the brunette. Now, it was Marley's turn to panic as the concern for her friend increased.
Looking up, she muttered, "Stupid idea or not, I've got to try."
Carefully, the redhead placed her foot on the hand railing and lifted herself upward. With her height, she was able to push the nearest ceiling tile out of the way, revealing the elevator shaft.
"Okay, Marley. You can do this," the detective said, reaching up and grabbing the metal bar running across the top of the elevator. Pushing off with her legs, she was able to pull herself upwards, and soon, she was sitting on top of her car, looking back down inside.
Taking a few moments to get her bearings, the detective opened up her cell and almost shouted for joy when she was able to get a signal. Quickly dialing 911, she was apprised of the situation.
The hotel had four men working diligently to get the elevators working, but they had encountered several unforeseen problems and were predicting at least an hour delay. Glancing over at the next car, Marley made her decision.
Karen had closed her eyes and leaned her face against the cool metal of the elevator. The telephone had quit working, and she was doing her best to keep herself together. When she was able to talk to Marley, the marshal had been able to stay relatively calm, but since she lost contact with the detective, things had quickly taken a turn for the worst.
A noise from above startled the brunette, but she wasn't able to open her eyes or move a centimeter, for that matter. The grating sound continued steadily until it came to an abrupt stop.
"Karen? Hey!" Marley exclaimed, looking down into the car at the shaking body. Holding onto the metal bar, she swung down and placed her foot on the handrail, and jumping to the floor, she made her way to the marshal's side.
Karen was sweating profusely and shaking like a leaf. Marley quickly knelt down beside the marshal and moved the damp hair from her face. When the brunette didn't respond, the detective reacted the only way she knew how; she took Karen in her arms and held her tightly.
Reflexively, the marshal clung to the detective, and Marley continued to mutter reassurances into the nearby ear. Finally, she slowly pulled away to assess the brunette's condition.
"Karen? Karen, answer me, please."
In a soft voice, almost a whisper, Karen asked, "Marley? Is it really you? Are you really here?"
"Yes, it's me. You're going to be fine. I spoke to the hotel management, and they're working on the problem as we speak," the detective informed the marshal; however, she purposely didn't mention how much longer they'd have to stay in the small space.
"Marley, I don't think I can wait any longer. It's hot in here, and the walls are closing in. I can't breathe anymore, and "
"Shh," the detective interrupted, "Calm down. Everything's going to be okay. I'm here now."
Karen burrowed into the detective's neck and closed her eyes tightly. She wasn't kidding about not lasting much longer. If she didn't get out soon, she truly thought she'd die.
Seconds turned into minutes, and the marshal's respiration began to increase instead of decrease, despite the comfort of knowing she was no longer alone. The shaking became worse, and the next thing Marley knew, Karen was literally fighting to get out of her arms.
"Karen, stop. You're going to hurt yourself. You need to relax," the detective stated over and over again, but nothing she did seemed to calm the marshal. Finally, when all other methods had been exhausted, Marley lifted Karen's face to hers and proceeded to kiss her senseless.
The shaking was the first to stop as the marshal slowly started to relax; however, her temperature remained the same, but that was probably due to the fact that she was 'hot' for an entirely different reason now.
As Marley released her lips, Karen leaned forward, following the detective. She was clearly not ready to give up her source of comfort.
"Don't stop," Karen begged, and not wanting to disappoint the gorgeous brunette, Marley granted her wish, gently stroking the marshal's cheek as she reinitiated the kiss.
The two women continued to exchange kisses, some sweet and gentle, and some hot and passionate, and Karen never once said anything about wanting out of the elevator once the kissing had begun.
The lights slowly flickered on, followed by a loud whirring noise, and Marley assisted Karen from the floor as the elevator began its descent. Neither woman said a word as the numbers slowly counted down to one.
When the doors finally opened, firemen and EMTs stood by to offer assistance, but Karen walked right by them, heading for the exit. Marley waved off an officer who was walking toward her, and she followed Karen out of the building.
Looking left and right, she spotted the marshal standing under a huge palm tree. Karen had her eyes closed with her head tilted back as she took deep breaths of the fresh air.
Marley slowly made her way over to the marshal and softly asked, "Karen, why don't you let the EMTs check you out?"
Without opening her eyes, Karen replied, "Marley, have you ever been sailing?"
Surprised by the question, Marley nodded her head before realizing that the brunette couldn't see her answer. Clearing her throat, she answered, "Yes."
"It's great, isn't it? Out on the water with the cool breeze in your hair; that's what I want to do. I want to go sailing in the wide open space."
"Now?" Marley asked, looking over her shoulder at the hotel entrance.
"Yes, now. What do you say?" Karen questioned as she opened her eyes and smiled at the detective.
Marley looked at the parking lot and then back at the entrance. Shrugging, she returned the marshal's smile and agreed, "Sounds perfect."
Taking Karen's hand, the detective led her to her car.
The hell with everything else; they were going sailing.
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