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Overnight Therapy - Chapter Sixteen


Title
: Overnight Therapy
Author: LSM71059
Fandom: Spooks
Characters: Lucas
Rating: PG-13
Spoilers: Season Seven
Summary: Lucas North has someone to confide in and take care of him when the nightmares and bad flashbacks happen.
Disclaimer: All Spooks Characters are the intellectual property of the BBC.
The Inspiration for this story was taken from the song "South City Midnight Lady" by the Doobie Brothers
(Time Line for chapter: Between Episodes 7.03 & 7.04)

 

Chapter Sixteen

As they walked out of her private office and she closed the door, Lori spouted in one breath,

“Can it be arranged that yours and my access cards are the only ones that open my private office door? And who do I contact for the access card for my assistant? He will only need to be able to open the main Suite door and have access to whatever area is currently under construction. I can provide that information on as needed basis. I think he is starting on Monday but I’d have to confirm that with my home office.”

“Do you always do that, Sam?” Lucas asked, putting emphasis on the use of Sam for her name instead of Lori.

“Do what?” Lori asked as she crossed the reception area to Lucas standing at the main suite door holding it open for her. She looked at him oddly for using Sam instead of Lori.

“Have such a rapid fire delivery and forget to take breath every now and again when doing it? “ He asked obviously amused. He was quite pleased she trusted him enough to have all access to her inner sanctum.

She smiled sheepishly replying, “Yea, when I’m in work mode it just flies when I get on a roll about a topic. I’m like a top that’s all wound up and someone pulls the string and it twirls round and round till it winds down.”

He said, “Excellent analogy, it fits you. Now, to address your questions, you have my assurance we can adhere to your request regarding your private office. As for your assistant’s key card, would it be alright if we set it up after his arrival on Monday? That will give me time to confirm his security clearance.”

“Of course, that will be fine. You’ll know as soon as I do who it is. And until he has his own access, I can take care of letting him in,” Lori said.

Lucas had to tease Lori as he locked the door and they started down the hall to the lift. He asked “If you don’t know the person’s name, what makes you so sure it will be a he and not a she?”

“Three things, first being there are only a handful in MP Enterprise’s employ that would have the necessary level of clearance to work for me at this high profile of a job and most of them are men. Second, there are two of them that are based out of the London office. The last is my boss knows me well enough to know that a man would be better suited to work for me than a woman,” Lori answered him seriously not catching that he was teasing her.

Lucas thought, “Lori really takes her work seriously. I will have to find out why her boss knows her so well and why she is better suited for a male assistant. There has to be a good story behind that. He said, “I see your point on the clearance issue. And it would make sense to have someone already based out of London.”

They arrived at the lift and Lucas pressed the down button. Lori leaned against the wall next to the doors as she waited. She looked over at Lucas wondering what he was thinking. His face showed no trace of emotion. It was a blank canvas, an empty void. But if one looked really close, they would see his eyes were alert and watching everything within his peripheral vision as he appeared to only watch the lift doors. He felt her studying him before he actually saw her in his side view. He took a step closer turning to her, looking her straight in the eye and said, “You seem to have something on your mind.”

Lori looked in to his eyes before speaking, “I was wondering what you were thinking. You had a blank look on your face but your eyes were working overtime.”

Lucas gave her one of his rare full smiles. He said, “You don’t miss much do you?”

“Try not to,” Lori said returning the smile. “I hope I didn’t make you uncomfortable by my watching you.”

“You did not. I don’t mind that you watch me as long as I am allowed to reciprocate,” Lucas said still smiling. Before he could say more, the doors to the lift opened and Harry Pearce emerged. Lucas’ whole demeanor changed from smiling to the blank mask before speaking again, “Good Evening, Harry.”

Harry looked over at them. He said, “Good Evening, Lucas, and what is keeping you here so late?”

Putting his hand on Lori’s elbow moving her to his side, Lucas answered, “Harry, I would like you to meet Sam Smith, the renovation project liaison from MP Enterprises. Sam, this is Harry Pearce our section chief.”

Harry extended his hand to her saying, “Ms. Smith, we’ve been anticipating your arrival. It’s a pleasure to meet you in person.”

Lori looked him straight in the eye as she dipped in to her pocket for one of her business cards. She shook his hand, handed him a card and replied simply, “Mr. Pearce.”

Lucas had to keep himself from smirking. Lori had fixed Harry with that look of hers which made you feel like she was looking in to your very soul. And she simply only need say his name to convey her authority. Lucas thought, “Even Harry doesn’t stand a chance of hiding from Lori’s assessing eyes. This is going to be interesting to watch the dynamic between these two.

As Harry dropped Lori’s handshake, he looked away from her gaze and pocketed her card. He addressed both Lucas and Lori, “How was the tour this afternoon? Did Ms. Smith have the opportunity to meet the team?”

Lucas answered, “The tour was very informative for both of us. And yes, Sam met everyone. She found the accommodations we provided satisfactory but has requests regarding access to her suite which I will take care of on Monday.”

Lori nodded in agreement still watching Harry intently. She was perfectly comfortable with letting Lucas do the talking. And she was pleased to be standing next to Lucas and across from Harry. It gave her a sense of comfort and safety being near Lucas and a great vantage point to assess Harry. Her phone vibrated in her pocket. She took it out looking at the display. She said, “Gentlemen, if you will excuse me, I have to take this call.”

They nodded their consent and she stepped down the hall out of earshot before answering, “Sam Smith.”

“Sam Smith, huh? I take it you are either still at Thames House or with someone from MI-5,” Donovan said.

“That is correct on both counts,” Lori said.

“I’ll not keep you then. Harry Pearce called to say he would like an update from you at earliest convenience,” Donovan said.

“He’s here now. We were in the middle of introductions when you called,” Lori said.

“Remember, for my sake, go easy on him. I’ll be wanting a full report as soon as you are able to talk freely,” Donovan said.

“Yes, of course. We can accommodate you on that matter,” Lori said.

Donovan teased, “You are smooth, kid. You still have the touch.”

“Thank you for the confirmation. I will be in touch,” She said.

“Yes you will. Have fun with Harry and remember be gentle,” Donovan said before disconnecting.

She hung up her phone, slipped it in her pocket and walked back over to Lucas and Harry.

*********************************

While Lori walked away to take her call, Harry asked Lucas, “What do you think of our renovation project liaison, Ms. Smith?”

Trying hard to keep his voice neutral, Lucas said, “I find her to be quite knowledgeable and capable in her field.”

“Good to know. What were the requests regarding her suite access?” Harry asked.

Lucas said, “It has to do with what access her assistant will have to the suite and project in general.” He didn’t feel the need to share the part of Lori requesting that she and he only have access to her private office.

“If her assistant’s clearance checks out, I see no difficulty in granting the request,” Harry said. “Sounds like you have everything in hand. Ah, here comes Ms. Smith. Perhaps she would be kind enough to give me a brief rundown of the schedule.”

Lucas took note that Lori returned to her position by his side. He thought, “I know she is tired and we were on our way home. But it will look suspicious if we don’t give Harry his rundown.”   He said leaving it up to her whether they left now or not, “Harry requested a rundown of the schedule. I know you were on your way out but would you have time now to do so or should we make an appointment for a later date?”

Lori wanted to let Lucas know that she was disappointed they weren’t going home but at the same time would help him out with his boss. She hoped he would read between the lines at she was about to say, “I did have a prior appointment, but the phone call I took changed my plans. So we can do it now. If you need to go Lucas I can go over the information with Mr. Pearce by myself,” She said looking at Lucas pleading with her eyes to please not leave her alone with Harry.

Lucas nodded imperceptibly to her saying, “Thank you for staying Sam. We appreciate it. I have no prior engagement. Harry, would you like to walk the project or review the schematics or both?”

“Thank you for accommodating me Ms. Smith. I should like to walk the project and review the schematics. Then I will be well informed to brief the Home Secretary,” Harry said observing the interaction between Lori and Lucas. He was pleased they seemed to be getting along on the professional level. He hadn’t seen Lucas so comfortable with anyone other than Malcolm since his return.

“I’ll need to get the quarter scale drawings in my office. Would you Gentlemen like to wait here while I get them?” Lori asked.

Lucas’ mobile rang. He pulled it out of his pocket looking at the display. He said, “It’s Ben. I should take this. Why don’t I meet the two of you in Sam’s office when I finished.” He walked over to his desk to talk Ben. As he did, he looked over at Lori to make sure she was alright with going down to her office with Harry.

Harry said, “Shall we?”

Lori nodded and headed down to her suite. She gave Lucas a weak smile as she passed his desk. He gave her an encouraging smile back. When they were out of earshot of The Grid, Harry asked, “So Ms. Smith what do you think of Lucas?”

Lori said, “Please, call me Sam. And as for Lucas, I think he is doing remarkably well but could doing better with a few adjustments.”

She opened to the door to the suite, flipping on the lights, letting Harry in and closing the door behind them. He asked, “And those would be?”

She opened the door to her private office, flipped on those lights and motioned Harry in. She dropped her messenger bag on her desk and pocketed the access card before sitting in her chair. She offered, “Please Mr. Pearce, have a seat. May I be totally candid with you?”

“Yes, of course, and call me Harry,” Harry said as he took one of the guest chairs.

“Harry, you brought me here to help Lucas adapt back. Let me ask you this, how fast could you adapt back if you knew your every move was being watched by MI-5? How long do you intend to keep up the surveillance on him?”

Harry looked at her a bit perplexed. He said, “We do not have any surveillance on Lucas save the CCTV only you are currently monitoring.”

“Are you sure about that? I know for a fact he is being tailed by a team of, and forgive me I don’t mean to be cruel but, bumbling fools. Here, let me show them to you,” Lori said rising and moving around to Harry’s side of the desk. She pulled up the photos she had stored on her Blackberry of all three shifts of Lucas’ surveillance teams plus Ros meeting with the old woman who lived upstairs from Lucas’ place. She showed Harry how to scroll through the photos then leaned against the edge of the desk as he reviewed them.

He handed her back the phone. He said, “There must have been a breakdown in communication. I ordered surveillance cease on Lucas just prior to your arrival.”

Lori said, “Well, apparently someone on your team either a) didn’t get the message, b) didn’t understand your directive or c) chose not to follow it. I’m thinking you should look at your team leader.”

Harry winced slightly at the last part. He never was able to hide how he felt when someone talked negative about Ros. He said, “Let me look in to it and I will get back to you within a day or two.”

“Better yet, why don’t you try calling Ms. Myers right now and see what she knows,” Lori suggested as she moved back around the desk and sat back down. She steepled her fingers leaning back in her chair waiting to see what Harry’s next move would be. She didn’t think he was lying to her, and thought he was unhappy to find out the surveillance had continued without his knowledge. She had managed to back him in to a bit of corner and they both knew it. Deciding perhaps she had pushed as hard as she could on the subject she shifted gears. Lori said, “So Harry, I feel we got off on the wrong foot when I arrived in town. I do hope it won’t affect our dealings with each other.”

Lori could see Harry mentally changing gears in his head. He said, “Think nothing of it. It will not affect our dealings at all. May I ask though how Mark Donovan’s protégé can be so shall we say versatile?”

“That’s the politest way I have ever heard it put that I’m a big pain to deal with,” Lori said genuinely smiling at Harry. “To answer your question, I am not Donovan’s protégé. If you don’t already know how we came to work together, I think that’s up to him to tell you. He was a great help along the way in my career but I was like this long before he knew me. You could say it developed early in my life. Ok, enough about me, we were discussing Lucas. He will be here anytime, so let’s pick this up say tomorrow morning? Would you be available for phone call then?”

“Yes, anytime after 10:00 a.m. I have a match in the morning to attend,” Harry said.

Lori got up from the desk and rounded over to Harry. She stuck out her hand to shake. She said, “Harry, I’m glad we could come to an understanding. I look forward to talking to you then.” They shook hands and she continued, “I’m going to step over to the plan room and get the drawings for the walk through. Feel free to use my office if you need to make any calls.” And with that, she left the room shutting the door behind her.

Harry sat there thinking, “Donovan told me how good Sam was but to spot all three surveillance teams plus Ros and the old lady and get photos of them within a matter of five days? She must think they are not very good at their jobs. And if she knows, then I am positive Lucas is aware of the surveillance too. That would explain why he is so cold and distant to Ros and myself. Donovan wasn’t exaggerating when he said she is one of the best and a handful deal with, but well worth the bother. I hope her magic works on Lucas. I did like how she managed to talk about Donovan without betraying the confidence of how they met. I should call Ros to find out if she knows why the surveillance hasn’t been cancelled."

 He pulled out his mobile and dialed her number. Ros answered on the third ring. “Hello, Harry, how was your meeting this afternoon?” Ros asked.

“Fine, fine, but that is not the reason for my call. I have just been informed that the surveillance on Lucas North has been ongoing. I thought I made myself clear it was to have been cancelled as of last Friday,” Harry said in an exasperated voice.

Ros said, “I thought it best we run it through the end of the month.”

“Unless there is a reason I am not privy to, you thought wrong. Is there such a reason? Harry asked.

“There is not,” Ros responded knowing full well by the sound of his voice, Harry was angry with her.

“When I give you a directive, I expect it to be followed. Do we understand each other?” Harry said in more of a command instead of a question.

“We do,” Ros said.

“I expect the final report on the surveillance detail to be on my desk first thing Monday morning then. And it best read that surveillance was cancelled as of,” Harry paused to look at his watch before continuing, “6:17 p.m. on Friday.”

“Yes, Harry,” Ros said. Harry hung up without so much as a farewell. He was seething that his right hand person had taken it upon herself to continue the surveillance on her own. This was too delicate a matter for him to be trifled with. He hoped Ros hadn’t comprised Ms. Smith’s operation.

*********************************

While Harry was in Lori’s office, she went to the plan room and flipped through the drawings marking the pages they would be looking at with numbered post-it notes. Lucas came in just moments after she had started. He noted the door closed to her office and the light in the plan room on. He came to the door and leaned against the frame. He asked, “Everything going alright?”

“Sure, Harry is in my office making a phone call while I get the drawings ready to walk through the project,” Lori answered casually. “Everything ok with Ben?”

“Yes, he wanted to run a scenario by me that he had come up with on his way home this evening, “Lucas answered. “Thank you for staying around Lori. I knew you were looking forward to going home.”

“Anything to help you Lucas,” Lori said with a wink as she picked up the drawings. “Do you suppose we could knock on my office door and get him moving? I really want to get out of here before the clock strikes midnight and I turn in to a pumpkin or something.”

Lucas smiled at her outlandish statement. He retorted while straightening up and walking back in to the reception area, “I’ve seen you at midnight and you turn in to a woman with a serious case of the giggles but not a pumpkin. I’m sure it would be alright if we knocked. Would you like to the do honors or shall I?”

“By all means, have at it,” Lori said as she came to stand by his side. Lucas knocked firmly on the door.

A moment later, Harry opened the door. He said, “Ah Lucas, you’ve arrived. Are we ready to proceed?”

Lori answered, “Yes, we are. Let’s begin in the parking garage or what I am given to understand by listening to Lucas today is what you call the car park.”

Lucas held the door as Harry & Lori went through to the main hall. He shut it firmly behind him making sure it locked. Lori looked over to him and asked, “Stairs or elevator, I mean lift. For all of us speaking English, you would swear it was two different languages.”

Lucas answered amused once again with one of her observations, “Let’s take the lift. This time of night, it should not be too busy. And you are doing quite well with catching on to the Queen’s English.”

Harry watched them with interest. He thought, “It is amazing how she is able to put Lucas at such ease. She seems to bring out the Lucas I knew before he went through his ordeal. How does she do it?”

They were soon back waiting for the lift to arrive. It did quickly and they entered. Harry pressed the button for the car park. As they descended, Harry was in the front with his back to Lucas and Lori. They stood against the back wall stealing side glances at each other. Lori did her best to crack Lucas up. But all she could get out of him was a half smile at her antics. They exited the lift and headed to the spot where the construction would begin on Monday. Lori joked holding out the drawings to Lucas, “Wow, Déjà Vu, weren’t we just here doing the same thing? So since you are well versed on the project perhaps you should give the walk through Lucas.”

Lucas gave her a half smile in response.  He said, “I’ll leave that up to you Sam, but I’d be happy to hold the drawings for you.”

“Fair enough,” Lori said as she handed the drawings to Lucas and began her dissertation while pointing out to various points on the drawings to Harry.   This time from beginning to end, the walk through took an hour. Harry was only interested in the highlights and not all the details like Lucas had been. When they finished back at The Grid, Harry said, “Thank you Ms. Smith, Sam, I appreciate you taking time to brief me on the project.”

“You are welcome. Feel free to call upon me anytime,” Lori said as she shook hands with him. She finished by saying, “Good Night Harry. I look forward to working with you and your team.”

Harry said, “Good Night Sam. It was a pleasure meeting you and I too look forward to working with you.” “Lucas, will you see Sam out?” Harry asked.

“Of course, Harry,” Lucas said. “Are you ready Sam?”

“I need to collect my messenger bag then I will be,” Lori answered. Lucas nodded to Harry before ushering Lori down the hall to her suite. Harry watched them go before turning to go to his office to finish some work before his weekend could start.

*********************************

Lucas let them in to the Suite. Lori went through to her office to collect her bag. As she stepped away from the desk, she became extremely dizzy and fainted.

His superb instinct kicked in allowing Lucas to react so quickly he crossed the room in one stride catching Lori in his arms right before she would have hit the floor. At first Lucas thought Lori was joking with him again. But he soon realized she had really fainted. He scooped her up and gently placed her on the couch.

Turning to the bar area, he rummaged through a couple of drawers before finding a tea towel. He took a bottle of water from the refrigerator and wet the towel. As he sat down at her side, Lucas placed the cold wet towel on Lori’s forehead. He gently stroked her cheek with the back of one hand and held one of her limp hands with the other willing her to wake up. 

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
oraetlabora2008
Mar. 21st, 2009 05:50 am (UTC)
Another great chapter! I always look forwarding to reading this story.

Harry hoping that Ros' surveillance of Lucas don't compromise Sam's operation. Umm, I'm mystified.
lsm71059
Mar. 21st, 2009 02:18 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I'm glad you are enjoying it.
bunkie77
Mar. 21st, 2009 01:27 pm (UTC)
Wow, I like it that Roz had to call off the dogs, and Harry's much warmer than originally expected, nice touches!! Can't wait for the *coming to* scene!!!
lsm71059
Mar. 21st, 2009 02:21 pm (UTC)
Thanks for your kind comments.
leslieg
Mar. 21st, 2009 10:40 pm (UTC)
Late catching up with this, 'cos' I was in flight yesterday. I love all the little asides between Lori and Lucas, and that Harry recognises what Lori's managed to achieve thus far!

And, yay, Harry, for pulling Ros up! Tee hee!!!

Is Lori OK? I'm as worried as Lucas must be feeling!!!
lsm71059
Mar. 22nd, 2009 12:22 am (UTC)
Returning from England?

I'm glad you loved the little asides between the two of them.

And for all his faults and being curmudgen, Harry really is a very intellegent man and can make very smart decisions when need by.

Keep reading to find out.
betty_eyes
Mar. 25th, 2009 09:57 pm (UTC)
Sorry for the delay. Do not know what happen tiese days but RL is gettiing pretty stressing. Thanks I have this litlle gift to stress me out.

I really like Lucas & Lori dynamic, especially when he is teasing her. And the elevator scene... I like it so much, so nice and Lucas looks very relaxed with her.

And about the faint, I was very bad. I thought like Lucas. He was joking but... poor girl, she was not! I hope everything will be ok. I'm rushing off to next one to find out.

Thanks
lsm71059
Mar. 26th, 2009 12:25 am (UTC)
I can empathize about RL. I hate it that it gets in the way of my writing. You are welcome.

I'm happy to know you like their dynamic. I wanted to show his lighter side. Which elevator scene? The one with Harry?

Well, you can't blame him for thinking that after she'd faked fainting earlier.
betty_eyes
Mar. 26th, 2009 09:11 am (UTC)
Yeah, in the elevator both in silence and she stared at him wondering what he's thinking. So bad Harry came and spoiled the party, but we must, on the other hand, thank him for the faint thing... So sweet Lucas there!
lsm71059
Mar. 26th, 2009 10:26 am (UTC)
Thanks for letting me know which elevator scenes. Wasn't Harry's fault, he just had bad timing, smiles....

Lucas does a sweet side, doesn't he?
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )