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Disclaimer: "The Pretender" and all it's characters don't belong to me, but to some wonderful people, who deserve promotions. Please don't sue me, I am making no money from this. I just really enjoythe show.

Note: I suppose you could call it angst, because so much has happened this season that was left unexplained, I thought I would go crazy so I wrote it all down (or as much as I could remember) and came up with an amazing conversation. Please take it lightly, because it's just ridiculous enough to explain everything.



"Confused Yet?"
By: Dede






Black tarry darkness filled the room so completely, Jarod wasn't even sure his eyes weren't damaged.

"Parker?" he whispered, nearly choking on the dust and ash from the explosion. His first concern was her welfare, as he scrambled to sit up.

"Here," came a small voice to his left. Sliding his hand along the floor, Jarod brushed a familiar knee.

"Are you...?" Jarod started. Parker silenced him was her fingers on his wrist.

"I'm fine. Where's Ethan?" She coughed and felt his hand on her back, rubbing gently.

"I'm over here," Ethan groaned, somewhere to the right. The muffled sounds of shoes moving and voices yelling that had woken all three of them became louder, drawing Jarod's attention.

"Lights..." he growled as he noticed flashes outside the door zigzagging across the tunnel walls. Jarod had been lucky to spot the room as they leapt from the train. He was fairly sure it was used for storing tools and as fate would have it the blaze pushed past them.

"They're coming to help," Parker argued with his tone. Groaning as he stood up, Jarod made the unpleasant decision to leave Ethan. He had barely made it to the storage closet, and Jarod couldn't help him if both of them ended up in the Centre.

"To help you, maybe." Parker caught only a glimpse as one of the light beams grazed his legs.

"Jarod! We can't leave. It isn't finished," Ethan yelled after his brother. The flashlights on his heels
deafened Jarod. Suddenly, it was four years ago and he was running for his life again. The searing pain of his calves and feet, warning that they couldn't carry him far, just served to quicken his strides.

"Jarod! Ethan!" a concerned voice called out from no more than twenty feet in front of Jarod. He stopped, frozen, vulnerable; it took him another minute to realize the voice belonged to his father.

"Jarod! Stop! Get back here, now!" Parker's scream echoed down the tunnel when she finally clawed up to the doorway.

"Angel?" Mr. Parker came rushing up to her with Sydney and Broots not far behind. She stood there staring blankly at him.

"Daddy? What are you..." she began and then noticed her twin jogging toward them, "and Lyle doing here?"

"We were worried," Lyle answered, "Ah, I see you have Ethan under control." Sam and Cox moved past Miss Parker in a dizzying blare to remove Ethan from the room. She leaned against the wall outside the door for support. Everything was happening so fast and her body ached so much that she couldn't decide whether to walk where she thought Jarod was or throw up. About the time Parker's fuzzy mind cleared, Sydney took her by the arm and began to lead her out.

"Do you want to keep holding onto this?" he asked softly, pointing to her gun. Parker couldn't believe she was still holding it; her hand was gripping the handle so tightly, she wondered if her fingers would be black and blue. She released the weapon, allowing it to fall into Broots' waiting hand on the other side of her.

Parker's eyes stung as the cold night air hit her from the street. Then up ahead in the alley were the town cars ready, but the closer she got to them, the more panicked Miss Parker became.

"Stop!" She felt a shiver hit the top of her spine, as Jarod demanded the confrontation. What could have possessed him to...? As the Centre personnel turned toward the sound, they saw more than just the injured man. Emily, Major Charles, and Zoe had guns drawn and targets chosen. Ethan used the shock to his advantage, running around the corner, so Sam and Sydney had to chase him. Parker suddenly couldn't contain her anger. Grabbing her gun from the cowering Broots, she started marching up to Jarod.

"What the hell are you doing?!" The question was logically what everyone was thinking, however, Lyle was the one to ask it, while he followed close beside her. That is until Emily fired a warning shot over his right shoulder. He stopped and both of them aimed at each other's heads.

When Parker was only five feet from Jarod, she raised her gun equal to his.

"You don't win this one, Boy Genius. Go home," she instructed.

"So you people can take away another member of my family. I don't think so," he replied.

"He's my family too, Jarod, in case you've forgotten and he needs help."

"I can help him," Jarod continued arguing with her. Cox was aiming his 9mm to end the discussion; however, Zoe shot a bullet four inches from his feet to make him aware she didn't appreciate being kidnapped. When Ethan finally was led back around into the alley, Sydney and Sam were on either side and severely out of breath.

"Lyle, let's stop this now," Emily whispered softly, her eyes locked on his. Lyle wanted to run fast and far from this conversation.

"Emily, I hardly think I can just drop my gun." Lyle tried to answer without adding to the suspicion of others, who might have heard her.

"It's curtain call, and I'm tried of all this confusion," Emily declared. Sadly, Lyle knew the girl was gutsy and would say anything she damn well wanted to whether he protested or not.

"No," Lyle growled in his fiercest voice. He tightened his fingers around the gun, preparing himself to kill her.

"Fine, I'll tell them," Emily replied biting her lower lip for a second. It was about then that Jarod and Parker became aware of their siblings' alternate discussion.

"Tell who what?" Jarod asked, looking at his sister sideways.

"I've been screwing Lyle." Emily spoke blatantly and without a hint of embarrassment. Lyle cursed himself for making her angry. He should have known better.

"You WHAT?" was all Miss Parker could manage. She had completely forgotten the 9mm she was pointing at Jarod. Standing next to him, she suddenly became concerned he would faint. Jaw dropped, hand still holding his gun, Jarod tried desperately to deny his ears were functioning properly.

"Oh, don't look so surprised, Jarod. If you can do Brigitte and get away with it, anything's possible." Emily's rough and annoyed response to Jarod's reaction (that Sydney and Lyle both worried was close to homicidal) was quite a bit different from her former gentle attitude. This confused her father and brother; unfortunately, Jarod had only a second to think on it before the repercussions of her words came back to haunt him.

"BRIGITTE?????" Miss Parker, Sydney, and Major Charles repeated at once. After shooting a glance at his sister, Jarod faced his accusers. He sighed and spoke shortly,

"Once." Darting his eyes to each for comment, he returned his attention to Emily, "And how the HELL did you know?" Emily smirked. She wasn't happy to have let such a nasty cat out of their bag, but it had been necessary.

"Lyle told me." No one witnessing the drama believed it was possible to cause Jarod to become more anger, until she said that.

"HOW did he know?" Jarod took a step or two toward Emily and Lyle. Parker followed, however, she let her hand holding the gun fall to her side.

"She sort of... mumbled your name in bed..." Lyle said becoming very quiet, "Well, I had to ask her why."

A light humorous smile appeared on Jarod's face. Broots and Sydney tried their best to not picture the event described.

"I'll deal with that later. Why on earth were you sleeping with Emily?" Miss Parker demanded. She was tired and hot, not to mention her stress level. Going slightly pale as his father and sister advanced a few more paces waiting for an answer, Lyle took a deep breath.

"I was going to kill her. I swear Parker, I was ready to kill her." Jarod and the good Major followed the Parkers lead by walking toward Emily.

"And I was prepared to blow his head off, Jarod. But..." she lost her fierceness at the disapproval written on their faces.

"But what?" Jarod demanded.

"Well, okay..." Emily fumbled, peering at Lyle for help.

"See Mr. White tracked her down for me and I followed her to this restaurant. I couldn't kill her in front of all those people so I decided to seduce her," Lyle explained.

"Meanwhile I knew precisely who he was and thought I could avenge Kyle, so I invited him back to my hotel room," Emily continued.

"One thing led to another and I guess we were caught up in the fantasy, so..." Lyle edged closer to Emily, hoping she wouldn't decide to shoot him.

"In the morning he woke to my gun in his face," she declared almost proud.

"There she was sitting on my chest with an evil smile and a gun in her hand. What can I say? I fell in love then and there," Lyle admitted.

"Emily?" Jarod said weakly.

"Well, he just laughed and asked if I wanted to order a breakfast pizza. How can a girl turn down that, especially when he says it with that deep tone of his?" she finished. Parker shook her head.

"I may be ill," Jarod replied.

"Like you're not doing her." Lyle then took in the looks Jarod and Parker gave him. "Oh, my god, you're not!?" he realized.

"Told you," Zoe commented to Emily, but was ignored.

"But with all that passion, I guess we just figured you two were....well you know." Lyle was truly flabbergasted, as was almost everyone on the scene.

"Had I KNOWN, that this place was as sexually active as a college campus! I might have jumped his bones years ago," Miss Parker barked. Jarod merely attempted to remain dignified.

"What ever happened to Mr. White, Lyle?" Mr. Parker inquired.

"I killed him. He would have exposed Lyle's affairs, so I lured him to a motel and cut him up," Emily remarked in a low voice. She was slightly ashamed of the event.

"If you and Lyle are, are, well are, then why did he throw you out that window?" Jarod asked, recovering some from his mental trauma.

"Because he was ticked off, I wouldn't tell him who was tracking you for the Triumvirate," Emily replied.

"And that was?" Miss Parker pushed for a name.

"Me," Zoe spoke up.

"ZOE! Why? How...?" Jarod shouted, gazing at her. She moved cautiously over to him, keeping a watchful eye on Cox.

"It's okay, baby, I know for once you're confused, however, I did it so we could be together." Zoe tried to assuage his dismay, brushing her free hand through his hair.

"How did you get on the payroll?" Miss Parker interrogated the redhead.

"Who do you think cured my cancer? They found out we had a special relationship a few months ago and offered me my life back, if I kept Jarod busy for a week. The Triumvirate's chair herself promised we could come to the Centre with Emily and help change things for the better," Zoe explained.

"Our vacation...?" Jarod asked sheepishly.

"Yeah, you never would have known about Ethan and we could have been happy finally." Jarod took a few shaky paces away from Zoe and toward Parker.

"But I wasn't aware of any of this," Major Charles interjected sharply. He was siding with Jarod on these revelations.

"Right, which is why when I told you to wait a week before contacting Jarod, you didn't listen." Emily sounded annoyed.

"Et tu, Emily? You would have let Ethan and all those peace delegates die?" Jarod glared at his sister, once again, finding `happily ever after' a hollow illusion.

"Of course not! I was tracking Ethan, who by the way was never supposed to stay on the train with the bomb, but my dearest moron over here," she gestured at Lyle, "decided I was getting mouthy so out the window I went."

"Yeah, well I was handling it, until Mr. Parker found out I knew too much, and sent Mr. Cox to keep me occupied. What I don't understand, is why, if you were working with Emily, didn't you say anything during the kidnapping?" Lyle directed his question at Zoe.

"I didn't know if I could trust you. Jarod had gone after Emily and everything was getting, if you'll excuse the expression, screwed up. As for Mr. Cox, I believe his name speaks for itself," Zoe hissed at him.

"Well, if you knew he killed Mutumbo, I don't blame you," Miss Parker commented.

"I didn't kill him." He contended.

"Daddy?" Miss Parker suggested.

"I told you once before, if I had or had hired someone to, he'd have been missing more than his eyes." Mr.Parker insisted.

"Well, then who did?" Parker asked in frustration.

"That would be me." Jarod said just loud enough for everyone to hear.

"Jarod?" Sydney couldn't understand how this was possible.

"YOU? You killed him?" Mr. Parker stammered.

"AND cut out his eyes?" Lyle looked as if he would lick his lips.

"Why on earth...?" Miss Parker started.

"For Brigitte. I was only trying to find out who put the hit out on Mr. Parker, but he caught me in his office and gave me no choice. I told Brigitte and she took the gun for safekeeping. She was trying to protect the baby," Jarod reflected on the past.

"From who?" Parker tried to fathom it.

"Mr. Parker and Cox. I knew if I removed the eyes, you'd assume it was Cox and maybe I could help her," Jarod continued, "Unfortunately, your father still let her bleed to death." It was clear; Jarod had harbored some affection for the now deceased mother, what kind wasn't certain.

"I told you SHE was trying to ruin all of us, Angel," Mr. Parker defended

himself.

"I'm thankful to you, Miss Parker, for being there, so she didn't die alone," Jarod commented gently. He wanted to reach out a hand for her.

"And Thomas..." Parker needed to understand.

"I didn't know." Jarod dropped his eyes.

"But I did. I'm sorry, Parker. I knew Raines ordered Brigitte to murder him," Lyle said.

"YOU left my gun on the table, when you set down the coats that night Daddy came to give me `his blessing'?" Miss Parker realized.

"Yes, I was hoping you would be able to stop Brigitte."

"Lyle, you tried to help me?" Parker was shocked.

"Hey, with you out of the way, I could get a better position at the Centre.." Lyle decided his image was about to be damaged.

"And a better shot at me," Jarod added.

"So let me get this straight, between planning Tommy's death and having a baby, Brigitte was sleeping with three men..." Miss Parker contemplated.

"Four." Mr. Parker's voice corrected.

"Four?" Lyle questioned.

"Raines."

"Okay, NOW I need a shower," Jarod replied in disgust.

"Many...many showers," Lyle echoed. For once, they were in agreement.

"She was sleeping with Raines?" Parker regretted the image in her head.

"When she started tapping Thomas' phone it was for me, but I imagine during one of their `meetings' she mentioned to Raines that Jarod was getting closer to you through Thomas and, trying to keep you apart, he used an anonymous channel to put the hit out," Mr. Parker concluded.

"Why wouldn't he want us near each other?" Parker became flustered.

"Because Catherine had felt confident that the two of you would team up one day to help Ethan," Sydney surmised.

"And he didn't want you finding out about Baby Parker," Emily added.

"What about the baby?" Miss Parker demanded.

"When I was researching Ethan, I found out he wasn't the only attempt at making a super pretender," Emily revealed.

"You mean...?" Lyle turned pale.

"Jarod and Parker have a beautiful baby boy. And just think, Miss Parker, your father ensured his little girl wouldn't have to go through the trouble of a pregnancy but could still be there for the baby's birth."

"Just used another wife, huh, Mr. Parker?" Sydney growled.

"She was in league with Jarod," Mr. Parker justified his actions, taking a step backwards.

"Not when you started this, she was still in bed with Lyle at that point," Jarod disagreed.

"Or in the office anyway," Broots found the guts to say. Lyle nearly lost it, he was so surprised. Miss Parker and Sydney merely suppressed chuckles, remembering the day.

"Wait a minute, Emily, if you're working with Zoe and Lyle, who's at the Triumvirate you can trust?"Jarod asked. He was still filing things in his brain.

"Your mother," Lyle answered for her.

"Maggie's still alive?" Charles asked.

"Yes, sir, and she can't wait to see you," Lyle reassured.

"Margaret?" Mr. Parker shouted.

"What did you think? She just disappeared? A year and a half ago, Mom made some friends at the African facility that believed things should go back to the way they used to be, when money wasn't the bottom line, so I continued my search solo while she prepared for an all out coup," Emily explained.

"Which was about the time I met up with Emily," Lyle interjected.

"So you were sleeping with MY SISTER while you were torturing me?" Jarod accused.

"Yes, but in all fairness if you had just stayed on the plane like a good boy, Margaret would have been waiting for you in Africa," Lyle said.

"And you couldn't have MENTIONED this to me why?" Jarod demanded, his trigger finger getting itchy.

"Too many cameras, besides I had already put a hit out on my father and Mutumbo was scrutinizing my every step," he replied.

"You were the assassin?" Mr. Parker couldn't believe his own blood had plotted his murder. Jarod sighed and grabbed Miss Parker's hand, leading her down the alley. He no longer feared the gunfire.

"Where are we going?" she asked him. Glancing at her, Jarod whispered,

"The nearest four star hotel." The smirk on her face spoke her approval.

"What about them?" Miss Parker inquired. Jarod hesitated and then turned to gaze at the group, staring back at him.

"I'll take Cox and Lyle, you decide about your father." Three shots fired, two hitting their targets in the leg, the other in the shoulder.

"I've got this under control, Jarod," Major Charles yelled to his son, while Emily pulled out her cell-phone to call Mom.

"Thanks, Dad," Jarod replied, waving a hand over his head.

After checking in, Parker followed her escort to their suite. Entering the spacious bathroom to clean up, Jarod finally broke the silence.

"So what do you think?"

"I think you're crazy," she laughed lightly, "What do you think?"

"Too many answers, too many answers..." Jarod's voice sounded slightly mechanical.

"Are we really going to leave them there?" Miss Parker questioned.

"God, yes, the world can take care of itself for one night," Jarod responded.

"Just one?" Parker teased, mischief dancing in her eyes.

"I'm really beat up, huh?" Jarod tried to ignore the knots in his stomach.

"Yeah." Miss Parker regarded her own reflection in the mirror.

"Do you want to take a shower first?.... Alone, I mean." Jarod recovered quickly. Parker responded by running her hands around his shoulders.

"No.... I think we've been alone too long, don't you?"


The End











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