Murdock looked around the trashed living room with a sad shake of his head. Whoever had done this hadn't been looking for something but wanting to destroy. What could be broken or shattered was. And if it couldn't be broken it was ripped apart or toppled. As the pilot stepped gingerly over broken glass near the window he spotted a short wooden shelf on the left wall that had some how remained in tact. However most of its contents had been swept to the floor.
As Murdock stepped closer to the shelf he spotted one glittering object toward the back of the shelf. Colleen must've had an Austrian Crystal collection Murdock realized as he closed his hand around the small object. It was a tiny crystal teddy bear holding a balloon. The sunlight bounced off of it casting a small rainbow on the wall under the shelf.
Murdock traced the bear's face gently before placing it carefully in his pocket.
"Hey Murdock."B.A. called from the other room jerking Murdock's attention back to the matter at hand. "There's a computer in here."
Murdock stepped into the small room, which was also in shambles. He found B.A. standing over a personal computer placing various disks one at a time into the disk drive.
"Find anything?"Murdock asked quietly as he came to stand in front of the small desk.
"Not yet but let's take it back to the hotel."Baracas suggested as he shut the computer down and reached under the desk to unplug the machine. "It'll give Face something to work on."
Murdock winced at the mention of Face's name but looked away before B.A. could see. He didn't want to cause a rift in the team but Murdock didn't know how to deal with Templeton Peck right now.
His carelessness had cost Murdock one of his oldest friends.....the pilot didn't know if he could ever forgive Peck for that.
Colleen glared at Stephen Terli as he reentered the room for the upteenth time that day. The gag had come off during the second visit.
"If you think killing me will get rid of the fact that you killed Ben Curso you're mistaken."Colleen stated wincing inwardly as she realized she sounded like a bad cop show."I've told other people what happened."
Terli laughed heatedly as he leaned back against the door. "If you're waiting for your precious A-team to come to your rescue you'll be waiting a long time."
Colleen felt her heart leap into her throat but she fought to control her fear. "What did you do to them?"
Terli shook his head. "Nothing. They think you're dead so they've moved on."
Colleen swallowed hard not wanting to believe that Henry and Face would give up on her so easily. "They'll come."She whispered.
"If you wish to hold onto that fantasy that's your choice."Terli replied coldly as he turned and opened the door. "Either way your life ends tomorrow."
Once back at the hotel B.A. plugged in Colleen's computer and set it up on the foot of the bed so that Face wouldn't have to move very far.
Peck instantly tapped away at the keyboard.....glad to finally be able to contribute something useful.
"How was the apartment?"Hannibal asked quietly as he stood with B.A. and Murdock near the door.
"Trashed."Baracaus replied angrily.
Face glanced up sharply. "She never mentioned that."
"It's probably what sent her to us."Murdock replied quietly sending Peck an angry glare.
Face opened his mouth to reply but quickly shut it. Knowing whatever he said wouldn't change anything. Colleen was still dead and it was still his fault. He turned his attention back to the computer screen.
Hannibal exchanged a concerned glance with B.A.. They both felt the tension in the room.
"Let's get some sleep."Smith ordered as he turned and headed back to the chair he had been sitting in earlier.
"I'll check on the van."Murdock replied quietly as he reached for his leather jacket. "See if there's anything we need."
"Find anything in the files, Face?"B.A. asked after Murdock left. Each man knew he wouldn't be back that night.
Peck didn't look up from the screen as he picked up another handful of disks."Not yet."
By one o'clock Face leaned painfully back against the pillows and closed his eyes wearily. He'd finally tracked down the file with the Terli information. It'd only been about three paragraphs buried in a story about Curso. It was mostly background information but it had given Face a few leads that he'd tell the others about in the morning.
With a sigh Face got stiffly out of bed. No matter what sleep wasn't going to visit him that night. Peck quietly pulled on his jacket and took two cans of soda from the small table and slipped out of the room.
As he neared the van Face saw that his instincts were correct. Murdock was awake as well.
The pilot glanced at Peck as he got into the van but didn't say anything.
Face handed his friend one of the cans of soda. "I figured you could use the caffeine."
Murdock took the can wordlessly his gaze fixated on the hotel in front of them.
Face sighed as he settled into the chair. "I did love her."He stated softly.
Murdock glared at him. "You've 'loved' a lot of women over the years, Faceman."
Peck turned to face him. "This was different, Murdock. Colleen and I....I know it sounds corny but we had this instant connection like nothing I've felt before."
Murdock shook his head. "I don't want to talk about Colleen with you."
"She wouldn't want this tension between us."Face countered.
"No she wouldn't."Murdock agreed quietly.
The two friends sat in silence for several minutes before Peck spoke.
"Do you think we can set this aside long enough to put the Terli's behind bars?"Face asked softly.
"I don't know if I can ever get past it, Faceman."Murdock replied tiredly. "But we need to put these people away so they can't hurt anyone else."
They left the hotel early the next morning. Hannibal had wanted Face to stay and rest a little more and they would come back for him in the afternoon when they made the move. But Peck had insisted that he be there every step of the way and Hannibal couldn't blame him.
As Murdock passed coffee cups around Hannibal noted that some of the tension between Face and Murdock had eased. Which made this next step in the mission a little easier.
"While Curso got must of his money from the nightclub business."Face began as he looked at the computer printouts of Colleen's files. "Terli had his hand in the import/export business."
"What's he importing?"B.A. asked as he merged with the heavy morning traffic.
Face tried to concentrate on what he was doing....on what they were about to do. Stuff they had done a million times before on various missions. But it was useless...he'd been thinking about Colleen ever since he woke up.
"Faceman?"Murdock prompted jerking Peck's attention back to the matter at hand.
"Right...."Face replied shaking himself away from his thoughts. "On the books they're importing coffee."
"Off the books?"Hannibal asked as pulled a fresh cigar from his shirt pocket.
Face shook his head grimly. "Colleen.....didn't have that information in that article. But from what I read between the lines it's more than likely a drug operation."
"That means he has a warehouse or two by the docks."Hannibal replied as he turned to face Baracus. "Step on it BA or we'll never get through this traffic."
Face was nearly drenched from Murdock's coffee as BA pulled the van into a sudden swerve as he changed lanes rapidly.
By the time they tracked down what warehouse was Terli's Hannibal had a plan formed. He ordered B.A. to pull over to one of the smaller warehouses across from Terli's. The building's huge bay doors were slightly open and Hannibal spotted something they could use.
Face and Murdock worked silently side by side as they used stenciling letters to spray paint 'COLLINS ARMORED CAR COMPANY' on the side of an old abandoned mail truck.
BA and Hannibal meanwhile used a blowtorch to use some spare scrap metal to turn the formerly white vehicle into a believable armored car.
In twenty minutes it was ready. Not a bad time, Face thought, considering what they had to use material wise.
Hannibal leaned on the hood as he turned to face the trio. "Murdock, Face. You two take the armored car here in. BA and I will cover the perimeter and scoop up the ones that try to run."
Face nodded as he walked around Hannibal to get into the driver's side.
Smith caught the expression on the conman's face. "Lieutenant, I want Terli to come out of this alive."
"No promises, Colonel."Murdock replied quietly before Peck could as both men got into the vehicle.
As soon as the armored car screamed to a stop in the center of the warehouse Face and Murdock hopped out guns drawn. Four Terli henchmen instantly approached them but Face and Murdock took them out easily.
Face picked up the nearest fallen henchmen and slammed him up against the cement wall.
"Where's Terli?!"Peck demanded his blue eyes blazing with a combination of anger and grief.
"He ain't....."The henchman replied but instantly broke off his sentence as Murdock pressed the butt of his gun against the man's temple.
"I'd reconsider your answer if I were you."Murdock stated coldly.
Th e henchman swallowed hard before replying. "He's down the hall. Three rooms to your right."
Face let the man fall to the ground as he started running toward the hallway. He paused and turned back to the pilot. "Murdock?"
Murdock nodded in understanding and slammed the handle of his gun down against the man's head. The henchman instantly slumped to the ground unconscience. After collecting the other henchmen's weapons Murdock quickly moved to catch up with Peck.
Colleen jerked awake trying to figure out what had awoken her. The room she was in was dark but hardly silent. She could hear startled cries from Terli's men and sporadic gunfire. The reporter strained against her bonds as she struggled to hear what was going on.
Colleen figured it was eithier a police raid, a rival organization viaing for power, or Face and the others coming to the rescue. She prayed it was the later.
But at the moment all she could do was sit and see who would win the battle that would decide her fate.
"How many you got BA?"Hannibal asked as they regrouped by the van.
The black man shoved three men forward in front of him while keeping a watchful eye on the rest. "Six."
"That makes fifteen. Not a bad days work."Smith replied as they corralled the henchmen at the rear of the van.
"What do you think's going on in there Hannibal?"BA asked with concern
Hannibal glanced back toward the warehouse before replying. "I'm giving them fifteen minutes.Then we go in after them."
"Right."Baracus replied just as one of the henchmen made a futile attempt to escape.
The man got three steps before BA shoved his rifle into the man's chest.
"Don't even think about it,fool."BA barked as he took a menacing step forward.
The henchman instantly retreated to his previous position hands raised.
Murdock picked up speed as they ran down the hallway so he reached the door in question ahead of Face. The pilot reached for the doorknob but Face reached out and knocked it away.
"Could be a trap."Peck warned as he studied the closed door for any telltale signs.
Murdock glared at him. "Of course it's a trap. Do you really think that guy would give up his boss just because we threatened his life?"
The door swung inward just then causing both men to jump. Stephen Terli walked out into the hallway and paused in front of Peck.
"You two don't dress like cops so this isn't a raid."Terli surmised as he leaned back against the doorframe. "So I assume you are members of the infamous A-Team."
Before Face could do anything Murdock shoved his rifle into Terli's chest and propelled the man backwards into the room slamming him against the far wall.
"How do you want to die, Mr. Terli?"Murdock growled as he pulled the gun away and aimed it at the mobster's head. "Head wound? Chest? Stomach? Though I've heard that a stomach wound is nasty way to go."
Peck pulled the trigger back against his own gun and leveled it against Terli's temple. "I don't think we should give him a choice, Murdock. He didn't see fit to give Colleen one."
The pilot nodded grimly and backed away prepared to let Face do the honors.
"You two think you have this all figured out, don't you?"Terli stated with a smile ignoring Peck's gun. "Did you ever get concrete proof that your precious Colleen has indeed gone to the great beyond?"
Face froze not wanting to risk a glance back at Murdock. This had to be just talk. "Bluffing to save your own skin won't work, Terli."Peck replied angrily tightening his grip on the weapon.
"Kill me if you wish but my men have orders to kill your lady if I do not return within an alloted time."Terli said smugly.
"Why should we believe you?"Murdock asked fighting to keep his voice from shaking. He'd lost too many friends in 'Nam and later back in the States. If there was even the remotest possibility that Colleen was still with them......
"Can you afford not to?"Terli replied quietly.
"Faceman..."Murdock prompted anxiously.
Face nodded. "Go, search the rest of this place. I'll keep an eye on him."
Murdock glanced at Terli once more hesitant about leaving Peck behind. But if they wanted to find out the truth about Colleen he had no choice. The pilot turned and quickly left the room.
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