Part II - Chapter 08 - James Kendrick & Madeline Weston

Before Brisco said a word, Pete stuck out his hand and said, “Chuck Finley, I presume. I’m Kendrick. While I would love get to know you better and to pontificate the meaning of life. I believe there is a matter upstairs that demands our immediate attention.”

As if to confirm the statement, a loud thump shook the floor above. Clearly, Brisco’s rooms upstairs were being tossed and potentially ransacked. Brisco buried the desire to demand an immediate explanation of Pete Hutter and followed Pete’s lead. Along the way, anxiety began to build inside of Brisco. “Of all the people in the world, Pete Hutter is going to help me maintain my cover? Doc and Brisco were as good as dead.”

“Who is upstairs?” inquired Pete in a low voice.

Brisco had to choose his words carefully to not undermine his cover, “Just a scientist.”

Pete nodded his acknowledgement as the two men entered the hallway, Brisco and Pete saw two unknown Irishmen kick in the scientist’s room. The group had already destroyed Rachel’s room as her clothes and personal items were strewn around the room and into the hallway. Brisco silently motioned to Hutter directions for the two to sneak up on the Irishmen. Brisco had to gingerly step over unmentionable items as he snuck up behind one of the Irishmen with Pete quietly getting into position to attack the other Irishman.

“Where are the weapons?” Brisco’s Irishman yelled at Doc as Brisco moved into position behind him.

Just past the man, Brisco could see a baffled and blurry-eyed Doc bolted out of bed. Still in a sleepy state, he tried to talk but words failed him. All that came out was a hoarse conglomeration of nonsensical sounds. Brisco was momentarily relieved that Doc had apparently lost his voice which would keep Brisco’s cover intact. Brisco was now almost directly behind his man so he kicked the man’s knees out from under him. The startled man attempted to get back up but Brisco landed a punch into the man’s kidney before Brisco dealt the final blow, taking both elbows down in a swift motion which quickly knocked the man out cold in moments.

The other man was too quick for Pete to catch and before anyone could stop him, managed to punch Doc square across the jaw. Within moments, Doc fell to the floor and passed out. Pete grabbed the knocked out Irishman’s gun and pointed it at the stranger in Doc’s room.

“Now that wasn’t real smart of you to break into a scientist’s room and knock him out,” came the all too familiar mocking voice of Pete, “You just lost your only leverage. Obviously, you don’t play chess. Maybe you should stick to checkers because you are all offense but no strategy.”

Brisco rolled his eyes. He had not missed Pete’s speeches over the years, but he had to agree with Pete. The man raised his gun and Brisco watched him slowly do the math. Two men with two guns each vs. just one gun. Seeing the battle was lost, the man narrowed his eyes and looked up at Brisco.

“How dare you Yanks try to profit instead of support our cause! You have no honor! There is a fight coming and you dare to-“

“How dare you break into my employees’ rooms!” Rage began to fill Brisco’s whole being and he was shaking at the thought that Doc could have been killed. The one man who could help Brisco save James. “Do you think that I would be dumb enough to bring the weapons anywhere near town before I got paid? Kendrick was right you are stupid!”

“At least we believe in a higher calling – like freedom and-”

“I believe in nothing but the almighty dollar. And I don’t need you or your cause! In fact, I am about to call this deal off!” The anger was now erupting and he looked over to see Pete trying to hide a laugh.

“Anything you want to add?” demanded Brisco.

“Nossir! Looks like you’ve managed to say everything needed,” Pete stated with hands lifted in surrender.

At that Brisco picked the man up and threw him out of the room. “In fact, deal's off! That’s the message you can tell your employers!”

“No need to cancel the deal or to pass on a message,” came the cheerful voice of O’Banion. He had silently moved up the stairs and was standing next to Snake and the hotel manager. “Message received. Come Playfair, we’ll attend to Lonergan.”

Brisco shoved the thief with a martyr complex down the hall towards O’Banion. As the man named Playfair slowly moved down the hallway, his head seemed to lower further with each step in shamed defeat. O’Banion gave a nod to Snake and the hotel manager. They took the silent direction and moved past Pete and Brisco to pick up the unconscious man named Lonergan on the floor. The hotel manager looked at the unconscious man’s gun in Pete’s hand.

“That’s my friend’s gun.”


“Well, it’s his” came the weak response from the hotel manager, a little less confident as he looked into Pete’s eyes.

“It’s a Beautiful Colt 45. Almost as beautiful as my piece. In fact, it’s about time, it had a mate. In essence, I would say, it was his. Past tense is key,” Pete’s voice was weighted with a threat and the all too familiar smile was spread across his face. Pete then turned both guns onto the hotel manager.

The hotel manager calculated the risk in continuing to ask for his colleague’s gun back but decided the better of it and backed off. It seemed the gun was not worth his life. And with that, the hotel manager and Snake carried their ally the rest of the way down the hall towards the departing group of Irishmen. O’Banion was the last to leave the hallway but just before he turned to leave, he gave a mock apologetic smile. “Our apologies for the confusion. Let’s all get a good night’s rest before deciding if we want to call off the deal.”

At that Brisco and Pete were left alone in the hallway. Pete began carelessly and quickly throwing any item on the floor into Rachel’s room while Brisco went to check on Doc. He was still unconscious so Brisco packed every scrap of paper that was laying about Doc’s room into Doc’s bag. When finished, Brisco looked to see that Doc’s room was still a mess but it didn’t look like there was anything from the future or about James in the room.

When Brisco checked on Pete’s progress and the state of Rachel’s room, it looked like she had luckily taken all of her weapons with her. The good news is that all of the weapons Brisco and Rachel brought would now be safe under the care of the trigger-happy Fiona. Satisfied that the only items in all three rooms were clothes and items without significance, Brisco strapped on Doc’s bag before picking up Doc and throwing him over his shoulder and heading into Pete’s direction downstairs.

- - - - - - - - -

Pete discreetly explained that he would keep guard over the rooms while Doc and Brisco met up with Michael to hammer out the rest of the plan. They had to almost mime their communications to ensure that the hotel manager and staff would not hear them. Unfortunately, charades was never Pete’s stronghold as Brisco had unfortunately learned during a mission in Mexico. It would have been hilarious if it wasn’t so frustrating.

According to Pete’s hand motions, Brisco should guide both horses east out of town and Michael would meet them just outside of town and show them where to go. At least, that’s what Brisco interpreted the hand motions to mean. But as Brisco rode out of town, he began to doubt the directions. Or maybe it was just doubt in the messenger. Brisco’s mind began to race with “what if’s,” including maybe Brisco had interpreted the motions correctly but Pete was leading him into a trap. Brisco began to look for any large boulders ahead, perhaps one painted with a starry night sky. Then he heard the sound of someone on horseback riding quickly towards them. Brisco hit the back of Doc’s horse to help Doc get away. He heard a faint moan and Brisco realized that Doc was finally starting to wake. If Doc had a voice, Brisco was sure that Doc would be shouting curses at the world. But luckily the worst that he could do was breathe heavily, which would not be heard over the horse’s hooves.

Moments like this, Brisco missed Comet. However, the thought was fleeting as Brisco had now turned the horse around and was riding toward the sound of the unknown rider. Brisco raised his gun ready to fight or shoot the stranger when he heard the familiar code, “Lightning.”

“Michael! Well, thank God for that,” thought Brisco before giving the corresponding code word, “Flash.” Brisco put his gun away and took deep breaths to allow the adrenaline to cool down as Michael rode into sight.

“Didn’t you have the scientist with you?” asked Michael.

At that Brisco groaned, kicking himself inwardly, and took off riding in the night towards where he had sent Doc. Luckily, Doc had already managed to stop the horse and was sitting awkwardly waiting for the group to catch up.

“What now?” asked Brisco. Doc sheepishly pointed up the road. He had come to a fork in the road and no one had told him where to go from here. It was clear that Doc did not want to be lost as much as Brisco did not want to lose Doc. When Michael caught up with the duo, he silently nudged his Mustang horse right and the two followed him. It was a quiet ride as the trio moved up the road and through a prairie before finally arriving at a cabin that was set in the middle of nowhere. There was a darkness billowing out of the chimney, meaning that someone had a fire going on inside along with lighted windows piercing the darkness as the small group stopped in front of the house.

“Home sweet home,” came the sarcastic yet wistful comment from Michael. The three tied up the horses and walked inside. Michael opened the door to the smell of food being cooked and two women working away. Fiona was instantly recognizable sitting at a table taking inventory of guns, ammunition, TNT, and the like. The other woman was Madeline, Michael’s mother.

“Is that your mom again?” asked Brisco, shocked to see Michael’s mother, a civilian, a part of the operation.

“Not my original idea but after years of me doing international work, she decided to make the trek to live nearby. Unfortunately, with the recent uncertainty and militarization overseas, most of my team have been reassigned. Once this mission is completed, we’ll be moving on too.”

Fiona lifted a gun to show off her hand to Brisco. “Don’t you just love it?”

“A .45 ACP – it’s a hunny,” Brisco stated as he inspected her hand before adding, “And the rock your wearing doesn’t seem too bad either.”

“I’m most excited about adding to the rest of my collection when we move to D.C. A girl can never have too many guns.”

A snort came from Madeline in the other room. Clearly, she was hoping for actual grandchildren and not a slew of guns to be “added to the family.” Whatever she was thinking, she packed it away as she lit a cigarette. She checked the food one last time and decided that it had reached a point of no longer needing her full attention, so she crossed the room and gave Brisco a big hug. “Do you want a beer?”

“When have I ever turned down a beer?” grinned Brisco.

Madeline laughed in agreement as she pulled a beer and yogurt out of the icebox. At the sound of Madeline and Brisco’s chuckles, the room changed from nervous tension to one of old friends realizing that it had been too long since they had seen each other. Fiona grinned and gave Brisco a hug shortly before Michael broke into a smile and shook Brisco’s hand.

“Your timing could not have been more perfect,” said Michael appreciatively. Madeline grinned at both men and handed Brisco his beer and Michael a yogurt and spoon.

“Everyone this is Doc, Doc this is-“

Doc angrily rummaged through the bag Brisco had packed and managed to find some paper and a pen and was furiously scribbling out giant letters. He quickly turned the paper around with the acronym W.T.F.?

“Everyone this is Doc,” Brisco sighed in exasperation before turning to his companion. “Doc, I don’t speak your science acronyms,” Brisco tiredly replied before taking a big gulp of beer. Doc rolled his eyes, turned the paper over and began writing in giant letters again.

“Hey, Maddie, maybe Doc should get a beer too?” asked Brisco, hoping a beer would take off some of Doc’s edginess.

Madeline nodded and went back to the icebox while Brisco turned back to look at Doc. By now, Doc had finished whatever he had been writing. Doc turned the paper around and emphatically pointed at the message in all capital letters.


“You write your mother with that pen?” asked Madeline incredulously as she handed Doc a beer.

Doc looked at her in aggravation but took the beer. After finishing the first gulp, it looked like he had decided on a retort but before he could whisper it, something caught his eye. Whatever it was, caused Doc to set the beer down and do a double take as he looked around the room. “Wait! I know this house!” whispered a hoarse Doc. He opened his bag again and began emptying various papers across the table.

“Yep, that’s Doc,” shrugged Brisco.

“So, to business,” stated Michael switch back into master spy mode.

“Yeah, we have a lot of things that we need to hammer out first. Such as, what am I supposedly selling? Where is it? How much is it? What’s our real target? How much time do we have?” listed Brisco in rapid fire before pausing to ask, “Not to mention, we’re working with Pete Hutter, the criminal?”

Doc banged on the table as he pointed from one map and picture to another. The group momentarily startled, continued with the discussion.

“Pete?” inquired Madeline.

“Kendrick,” explained Fiona as Madeline nodded understanding.

“That didn’t come up when you were at the hotel, did it? That could have put the mission at risk!” exclaimed Mike.

“We didn’t have time for introductions with the Irish gang and hotel manager ransacking our rooms, attempting to kidnap a scientist, and looking for weapons that I don’t actually have,” retorted Brisco.

“I promised them weapons of the future. One big item that will change the future of warfare and several small items,” Michael explained nonchalantly and in between bites of yogurt. After a pause, Mike laughed before musing, “By the way, wasn’t the coming thing your quest in the past?”

Brisco rolled his eyes and was about to respond in sarcasm when an extremely excited Doc began pounding his fist on the table. As if the pounding was not enough, he began making a weird squeaking noise as if he was trying to shout something, but his voice had been replaced by a mouse instead of his own.

Madeline gave him a look that only mothers can give which can somehow always bring silence, even during the most brutal of temper tantrums. Doc immediately responded by sitting down and looking pleading up at Madeline as if to beg assistance.

“Either your boy has a mouse in his throat or he wants your attention and I suggest you give it to him,” stated an understanding Madeline before she patted his hand and went back into the kitchen to finish the meal.

Brisco, Michael, and Fiona obeyed Madeline and focused on Doc who looked like a child trying to behave but bursting with good news. To Brisco, this was the most excited, even joyful, that he had ever seen Doc in their short acquaintance. Doc pointed at a map that he had been carrying with a sketch. He then began to write the word James on the map.

“James is coming here?” asked Brisco incredulously.

Doc responded by emphatically nodding his head.

“That seems far-fetched, nearly impossible, and highly coincidental…” objected Brisco.

Doc opened his mouth but when only squeaks came out, he frustratedly wrote out on a piece of paper, ““TOO MUCH TO EXPLAIN IN A NOTE BUT SIMPLY, I PROGRAMMED THE BRACELET TO VISIT KEY PLACES & TIMES IN HISTORY.”

“Bracelet?” called Madeline.

Brisco sighed and said, “It’s a long story.”

Madeline called out, “Then it’s the perfect time to tell it. I just finished dinner. Boys can you help me move the food to the table?”

Within moments, the fivesome were seated around the table with beers in hand and food on their plates. Between bites of food, Brisco caught the group up on James’ disappearance, the bracelet, and that Doc was here to help them rescue James and return the boy to his mother.

- - - - - - - - -

After catching Michael and the rest of the group up on Brisco’s adventures thus far and the bit of understanding that Brisco had about James and the bracelet, the group sat in a moment of silence processing how their journeys led them to cross paths.

Michael was the first to break the silence, “So, James is coming here?”

Doc nodded.

“And he’s protected by any harm from the bracelet?” asked Fiona.

Doc nodded but a bit more cautiously as he tried to determine where Michael and Fiona were going.

“And, do you feel that this place is safe and abandoned enough for him to be protected for a few hours?” Michael asked.

“Where are you going with this Mike?” asked Brisco, his suspicions raised.

Michael held his hands up in surrender. “Nothing to get upset about or to ruffle any feathers,” he quickly stated. In the moment of silence, Michael looked between Fiona and Madeline.

“Not to undermine your mission here but it sounds like James will be arriving here, as in this cabin…” began Madeline.

“And this is the safest place around,” interjected Fiona. “It’s far from town, no one know where it is…”

Madeline continued, “We can make sure that food is here and leave the girl,” she paused to point at the corner where Brisco assumed the sleeping Rachel laid, “to keep him company and to protect him when he arrives.”

Brisco considered all that they were saying. Based on the bit that he put together of the mission at hand, there was less time with Mike’s mission, and it would affect the fate of the nation, rather than the life of one person. Brisco shook his head, he could not make the decision between nation and his best friend’s son.

Madeline reached over and patted Brisco’s hand before empathetically stating, “If Doc can determine that the boy will safely land here and that he will be here long enough for us to complete Michael’s last mission in Miami, will you help us?”

Brisco looked up at Madeline but she lifted her chin to point at Michael and Fiona. As Brisco studied the couple, they tried to avoid his gaze and stare over at the fireplace. Even in the shadows, Brisco could tell that they were worn out. If this mission didn’t end soon, it might drain the last of life from each of them. They needed to leave the spy world behind, and they couldn’t do that until their last mission ended.

Brisco sighed before stating, “If Doc can prove it, we’ll help with your last mission.”

- - - - - - - - -

After many desperate mimed and written protests from Doc, Madeline finally was able to persuade him to calm down enough to listen to why this mission was so important. When she patted the boy’s shoulder, she noticed that he would flinch as though the interaction unnerved him. As she studied the boy, it became clear to her that he had never experienced a maternal influence in his life. She switched the young man from beer to hot tea and studied how worn the boy looked. He seemed to be wasting away in front of the group, as though the simple act of sitting around a table talking to the others was draining his energy. He looked like he was slowly dying.

“It’s not enough to know who the Irish gang members are, we need to find out who their benefactor is and who is giving them their targets,” explained Michael.

“My countrymen seem truly devoted to the independence of Ireland but-“ Fiona stopped midsentence.

“But it seems like there is a darker force pulling the strings in an effort to thwart British and American governments,” theorized Brisco, the pieces seemed to be fitting together.

“What better way to cause distraction in a government than to spawn a rebellion from its people?” asked Michael. “Think about it, the Irish Catholics challenge the British Empire while the labored and forgotten masses are fighting in America.”

“Who do you think it is?” inquired Brisco, curiosity peaked.

“I’ve got a few theories,” began a cautious Michael before changing the subject. “Honestly, the most important thing is to catch the persons behind the anarchists and give them the boot… it’s not determining if I’m right or wrong.”

Madeline looked between Doc slowly sipping his tea while absorbing the information and the sleeping Rachel in the corner. These kids and James should stay out of this fight, there would be plenty of more adventures down the road for each of them.

“Once Doc proves that James will be safe, why don’t we leave Doc and Rachel here to wait for James. We don’t really need all of us? Aren’t Brisco and Kendrick enough?” asked Madeline with worry in her voice.

“Unfortunately, Doc, you’re involved. And if you’re a scientist then we’ll need your help designing the weapon. We’ll need the weapons to be detailed enough to give us time to identify the key players, dispose of the ancillary characters, and abduct the instigators,” said Michael.

“Or at least fascinating faux weapon with all kinds of do-dad’s that I can talk about as part of the sales presentation,” said Brisco.

“Exactly,” agreed Fiona.

Doc sighed. This adventure was becoming more complicated by the minute. Now there was this additional scheme. What made this moment all the more disappointing was that Doc had actually studied this event and had hoped to witness it occurring. Instead, his presence had moved it off kilter and quite possibly would lead to this mission’s failure. Originally, Brisco was supposed to be in Hollywood far away from this adventure and Michael’s boss, Jesse, was supposed to play the part of the seller in the mission. Instead, Brisco was involved and if the mission was not a success, the destruction of America and possibly the entire Allied Force of the Great War would be their new future, his new past.

Doc set his tea down and ran his fingers through his mess of curly blonde hair. He let out a slow breath and closed his eyes. It was clear that he was over his head but he needed to do whatever was possible to protect the outcome of this event. Doc slowly nodded to show his acquiescence and explained via written diagrams that James should arrive in a nearby cellar, he would not only be safe away from Miami, but tucked away in a storm cellar. Based on the time charts, he would not be leaving again until the day’s end which would be hours after the mission was supposed to be completed.

As Brisco and Michael picked up Rachel to place her into the storm cellar and to move out the rest of the guns hidden away down there, Doc pulled out some sheets of paper and began drawing a variety of sketches. Doc realized that he did not want to alter history any further by giving them actual inventions not available yet but he still needed the ideas to look futuristic and dangerous. Doc made several designs, the first set were field artillery that were already invented, or just about to be, which he knew would not adversely affect coming events. He gave the sketches and instructions to Madeline so that she could provide everything to Michael, Brisco, and Fiona to build out of scrap metal.

Once that was completed, he began on his “futuristic” designs which were more of sketches of current vehicles, clothing, and weaponry and adding a steampunk flavor to it. Doc began with the easiest designs, the clothing which included jackets, pants suits, and hats with various cogs and wheels. He then began to sketch various Ford T Models but wings to let it fly and an inflatable boat underneath it. He also drew versions that could expel smoke out the back and had mini canons installed in the front. All of the vehicles were inspired by movies he’d seen in his research, specifically “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” and “The Great Race.” For a moment Doc was worried that Brisco would bring the sketches to Hollywood but then decided that these designs falling into cinematic hands early would not be a detriment to future events. However, as Doc rubbed his eyes, he realized that he was humming the theme song for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. “If only this were as simple as Dick Van Dyke singing a song and the world simply resolving itself into a happy ending.”

As Madeline brought Doc another cup of tea, Doc tried to avoid her eyes. “How had Karina avoided Brisco and Bowler noticing how our bodies are no longer strong enough to be in this oxygen rich environment? That the more time we spend out in this world experiencing everything as it should be, that our bodies get more and more strained?” thought Doc. As Doc briefly peered outside, Brisco, Michael, and Fiona did seem oblivious. They were each taking turns moving the pieces into place and finding surreptitious and quick ways to bind the scraps together in an effort to fool people looking at the items. It seemed that the only person who noticed Doc’s health issues was Madeline.

As Doc finished one sketch and began to work on the next, he glanced up for a moment. Madeline had stopped hurrying about the kitchen and had sat opposite him. She had lit a cigarette but it dangled, forgotten, from her hand. She smiled at him as though she had adopted him and signaled that she knew he was hiding something. Doc gave his most impish grin and winked at her as if to say that there was nothing to worry about. As Doc began working on his next idea, he became so engrossed in the sketch that he did not register her kind pat on his shoulder as she left the small house to find Michael.

- - - - - - - - -

“Michael, someone needs your help!” Madeline sternly whispered.

Brisco, Michael, and Fiona had found a stopping point in their tasks and were excitedly reviewing their upcoming roles in the sale and kidnap later in the day. At Madeline’s interruption, they all stopped to stare at her.

“Ma, we’re in the process of saving ourselves, the nation, and James… who could we have possibly missed?” inquired an incredulous Michael.


“What?” scoffed Brisco. “He’s just an indoor scientist, just not used to being outdoors.”

“I’m telling you, there is something more than that wrong with that boy!” insisted Madeline.

“Look Madey,” began Brisco before considering the rest of his words. He began again, “Look, Madey, I know that he doesn’t look like he’s fairing well. Part of it is like a person from a flat part of the world going to the top of a mountain, there’s an altitude sickness-“

“That’s not it-“ interrupted a frustrated Madeline.

Brisco held up his hand to pause her. “Look, I know that’s not the whole story. I don’t claim that it is. I am hoping that once we get James tomorrow that he’ll be able to go home and to fully recuperate with doctors of his own time. But right now, he wants to pretend that it’s not keeping him from today’s mission and I’m not about to rob him of his pride.”

“Ma- I think Brisco’s right. We need to respect how he wants to be treated.”

Madeline opened her mouth to protest but then changed her mind. She took another deep inhale of her cigarette before flicking it into the darkness. “It’ll be light soon. You all should get at least an hour or two of sleep before heading out. I’ll work on getting food together for James and for Rachel.”

At that, Madeline moved back into the house, slamming the door behind her. The trio outside took one last look at their makeshift artillery and decided that they would be good enough for the show in a few hours. The small group silently went inside to attempt to nap before the stressful day would begin.

- - - - - - - - -

“When he gets frustrated about the weapons quality, I bring out the sketches of the other design,” Brisco stated to confirm the plan one last time over breakfast. Brisco forced himself to drink the coffee and eggs but found that it was hard to drink or eat after a sleepless night.

Michael nodded to confirm as Fiona pointed her strip of bacon at the group before inquiring, “At that point, do we shoot them?”

“Fiona-“sighed Madeline as she rolled her eyes. She had a freshly brewed pot of coffee and went around the small table refilling everyone’s mugs.

“I am just teasing,” Fiona stated as innocently as possible while not fooling anyone in the room. She rolled her eyes and said in a disappointed tone, “At that point, we gas the room.”

“Exactly. Our target is O’Banion and whomever he works for. Washington is hoping to be able to interrogate both men to obtain as much information as possible. He may be able to help us resolve numerous conflicts on our own soil,” directed Michael, for what felt like the tenth time over breakfast.

“Then we shoot them,” muttered Fiona. Michael opened his mouth as if to add or correct her but closed it and began busying himself by looking for a yogurt in the icebox.

“Who is picking the leaders up again?” asked Brisco, hoping it was someone that he could trust to carry out justice.

“US Attorney Brigstone. Think you worked with him back in the day.”

“He’s not my favorite individual but he’ll do.”

“You mean they’ll serve the death penalty?” a hopeful Fiona asked.

Michael paused to scoop out another mouthful of yogurt before continuing his summary of the day’s agenda, “And then we’ll head straight back here and work on getting James home and the bracelet removed,” The group then turned their attention to Doc. He seemed content to eat his breakfast and drink his tea and only looked up when he realized that all eyes were watching him.

“And you back to your timeline,” exclaimed Brisco as he patted Doc on the back. Brisco gave a forced laugh as he stated, “I have to say, you future time travelers manage to make my life hell every time you visit!”

Doc responded with a half-smile before turning his attention back onto his food.

“Well,” mused Madeline, “that you know of.”

Brisco looked at her in disbelief before incredulously demanding, “What does that mean?”

“Well,” began Madeline thoughtfully as she lit another cigarette, “None of the rest of us had any idea of time travelers or that time travel was even possible before today. It stands to reason that not all of them are conspicuous and that there may be some more covert operatives from the future that have come and gone without causing a ruckus.” She suddenly looked at Doc realizing that he might have taken offense before apologizing, “No offense or disrespect, Doc.”

“Let’s run through the plan again before you two leave to meet up with Pete,” commanded Michael in an effort to change the subject.

“Again?” squeaked the shocked and hoarse Doc.

“Yes, again,” replied a calm Michael. “When you’re a spy, your team is counting on you to know your role inside and out.”

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