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Author's Chapter Notes:

This is going to be a transitional chapter. The story is going on faster, from now on. And it's far from being over!

I'm a huge user of Tumblr. In case you didn't know, this is my account


I usually post photoset from The Pretender. Gifs, Pics, and Quotes.

I love this social network, I feel it was made for people like me!

Anyway, a few months ago I read this post:

"Only a Michael T. Weiss fan knows just how annoying Foo Fighters can be."

I laughed so much, because it's true: when you look for "the pretender" on the web you might find 2 kind of posts.
- those talking about this amazing show
- those talking about Foo Fighters, 'cause their most famous song is called "The Pretender".

Anyway, I laughed because I love them both. I love Foo Fighters so much, I guess as much as I love this show.

So I thought, "Why not using this coincidence in my fanfic?". And so, here it is. This chapter is all about this strange idea I had. I know many of you won't like it, but, hey. It's all in our mind, isn't it?

Not an English speaker, blah blah blah.

See previous chapters to know the reasons why I'm not really the best writer around here! :)

I also want to say Thank You to my wonderful Beta Readers, Antoinette & DanielleSmileyFace!

That evening Jarod was really looking forward for Parker’s return. He had spent the whole afternoon waiting. It wasn’t easy for him to feel like that. He was the one who usually dictated the rules of the game, the one who had the situation under control, the one who decided what to do with others’ lives. His mind games used to be his pursuers’ daily occurrence; his pranks drove them crazy.

Now, everything was different. He had to wait for the others to move a pawn and make the next move, and this was driving him crazy.


So, when he finally heard the noise of the keys in the lock, he ran towards the door, careless of the fact that Parker could have been accompanied by a sweeper, or Lyle, or Raines, or anyone else.


Jarod stood behind the door and waited for those never-ending legs to walk in. The miniskirt she wore under a silk blue blouse was already causing him shortness of breath.  


Careless of the fact that he would scare her to death, he got next to her in silence, he eagerly put his hands around her waist and dragged her to him in a sudden and quick gesture, starting to kiss her neck, smelling her intoxicating scent.


Initially, Parker was startled, then she realized that this could only be Jarod, so she let herself go to those wonderful attentions that were already melting her down.


“A little birdie told me that you had a verbal confrontation with your prey, this afternoon.”


“Yeah, he was really annoying.” she played the game, appreciating more and more the touch of his lips on her neck. “Not only did he say I’m a sweepers’ huntress, but he even dared to hang up on me.”


“Such a rude guy. I should teach him some good manners. Nobody should tease such a charming huntress.”


Parker smiled, while Jarod stroked her belly, “The two statues were really awful.”


Jarod stopped kissing her at once, “Hey! It took me a whole afternoon to shape them, you know?”


Parker turned around, an intriguing look on her face, “And when did you find the time to make them? While I was sleeping, or while I was in the shower?”


Jarod looked at her in amusement, “They were the main meal of one of the gifts I wanted to send you just in case you…didn’t show up in New Haven.”


She nodded, putting her hands on his, still accurately placed on her belly.


“You must admit, this was much funnier.” he whispered to her.


“I know something that could be even more fun.” she said to his ear.

After a couple of hours spent in bed together, they finally made up their minds and moved back to the living room to spend a quiet night. Parker was drinking an herbal tea that Jarod had recommended to contrast the omnipresent nausea, and she had to admit it was working.


Ethan would arrive soon, so they both wanted to wait up for him.  


Parker sat on the couch while Jarod kept the fire burning. That new sensation of intimacy, the feeling of sitting there in silence without the need to speak, everything allowed them to feel at peace, even if the war was far from being over. This was how their life could be. Spending time together, just looking at each other, because a glance was enough to understand what they felt. For example, at that moment Parker knew that Jarod was amused, but she couldn’t figure what was making him smile like that.


Maybe the simple fact that Angelo was out of danger had put him in a good mood.


“What’s with that smile?” she asked him, blowing on her tea. She took a sip of it, then she put the mug on the table.


“A couple of years ago, I pretended to be a roadie for a famous rock band. Maybe you’ve heard of them, the leader was the former drummer of Nirvana, which as you know I missed.”


“You didn’t miss anything, Jarod.” she disagreed, knowing the history, “Cobain was a chronic depressed guy plagued by mental problems that he probably created on his own. He couldn’t accept the weight of his success and the band died too, when he shot himself. He broke the heart of millions of teenagers all over the world.”      


Jarod grimaced, “That’s not how Dave used to tell the story.” he contradicted Miss Parker.


She opened her mouth in disbelief. She wasn’t that huge lover of grunge, nor rock, nor any kind of noisy music. She’d never really enjoyed screamers. But she knew Nirvana, and she also knew the group born from their ashes, the Foo Fighters.


“You want to me to believe that you went on tour with Dave Grohl?”


“He needed a very good roadie, and I was recommended to him as the best.” he said, with a huge smile on his face. Parker grinned, too.


“Well, apparently you befriended one of the best drummers ever.”


“Dave is a crazy man, but he is also sensitive. We became friends, I particularly loved one of his songs, it felt like it talked about me.”


“Which one?”


Jarod remembered mechanically the song lyrics.

  Truth or consequence, say it aloud
  Use that evidence, race it around

  There goes my hero
  Watch him as he goes
  There goes my hero
  He’s ordinary

“A song talking about the ordinary nature of heroes. I never felt like a hero, but that song…every time the band performed it, the crowd got crazy, and I couldn’t understand why.”


“Kids love shouting and drinking beers at concerts – that might have been a huge shock to you.” she replied, teasing him.


Jarod ignored her joke. “That was the first time I felt closer to contemporary music. Everything that Dave writes makes sense, his words…well, they always make me ponder.”


“So why were you smiling, before?” she asked, remembering the reason why they were having that conversation.


“Because Dave promised me that one day, he’s going to write a song about me.” he concluded, a smile full of triumph on his face.


“Oh, stop it.” she mocked him.


“I told him the truth, you know? I told him that I’m a pretender. That I can be anyone I want to be.”


“And you enchanted him to the point he was inspired to write a song? Knowing his style, it won’t probably be a love ballad.”


“Yeah, I don’t think so. But he said that when the moment comes, I’ll notice without the need of a public dedication. He knows I cannot risk being tracked.”


By now, Parker was incredulous, “Why did you confide in a stranger? Just because he was a famous singer?”


Jarod got closer to Parker, his face as close as possible to hers, “Because he confided in me, too, and it felt good to reciprocate. I spoke to him about you, too.”


“And what did you tell him?” she whispered, placing a soft peck on his lips.


“That some songs he wrote made me think about an Ice Queen that I rarely saw because we couldn’t be together. But that I kept walking behind her until our hearts would eventually beat in unison.”

  I cannot be without you
  matter of fact
  I’m on your back    

  If you walk out on me
  I’m walking after you

  Another heart cracked
  in two
  I’m on your back

“You’re a poet too, now, Jarod?” she asked him, secretly stunned by those words.


“I’m a pretender full of surprises, aren’t I?” he answered, kissing her.


They let themselves go to effusions, so Jarod sat down on the couch where she was sitting. In a few seconds they were lying on it, kissing passionately.


“Errrrr...” somebody cleared his voice at their back.


Jarod broke away from Parker and they both stood up to see their brother amused look. He winked at them, and Parker thought she’d never seen Jarod so embarrassed in his whole life.


Ethan rubbed his hands after clapping them one against the other, “So, siblings. It seems to me that you didn’t have any problems in spending your time during the wait.”


Parker covered her face with her hands, she wanted to bury herself.


Jarod reached his brother and hugged him, glad to see that he was back safe and sound.


“So, you two have a couple of news for me, don’t you?”


“The voices are irritating sometimes. I had hoped to be the one to tell you.” Miss Parker complained.


“Sis…” Ethan smiled, hugging her with tenderness.


“It seems that you’re having a niece.” she explained.


Ethan wondered how they could already know, seeing that the voices hadn’t been much clear about that.


“Angelo says it’s a girl. So, I know it’s going to be a girl.” Parker continued, realizing that it was also the first time she was saying this to Jarod.


The glimmer of immense joy she saw in his eyes was enough to fill her up with happiness.

Jarod and Miss Parker were still waiting for Ethan to reveal what he had discovered. His parting had allowed him to recover the intel that members of the Triumvirate were traveling to The Centre, but it couldn’t be just that.


“After Adama’s death, The Centre made it look like Jarod was his murderer.”


Jarod opened his eyes in shock and stared at Miss Parker in a comical way, as if he had a question mark over his head. She had completely forgotten about this particular piece of information.


“Raines convinced them that you broke free on the jet and killed him and his guards, then you parachuted away with the Scrolls.” She recited.


“I guess finding Mr. Parker with the Prophecies made them change their minds.” Jarod commented.


Ethan nodded, “The new chairman is Adama’s brother, a man named Hasani. He turned out to be very vindictive towards you, until he found Mr. Parker and the Scrolls.”


“And he’s getting to Blue Cove?” Jarod asked.


Ethan nodded again, “With a big group of guards and his main coworkers. If we take them, we take the whole Triumvirate.”


“Great!” Parker almost yelled.


“Not really.” Ethan observed.


Jarod grimaced, “I knew this was too good to be true. What else?”


Ethan sighed, he didn’t know how to tell them, so he thought it was better to show them. He took another paper from his bag and gave it to his siblings.


“I didn’t send Mr. Broots this one because I wanted to tell you in person.”


Seeing your total inability to find Jarod, I’ve decided to come to The Centre and rearrange the pursuit. Your team never got the desired results, we also believe it might have been compromised. The psychiatrist’s unsuccessful murder is enough proof. I will personally choose new agents to hunt Jarod, we cannot allow Miss Parker to help him destroying what we’ve firmly worked for in the last decades. Until further notice, the Centre only has one goal: find Jarod and take him back.  


When we catch him, we can finally eliminate Miss Parker.


We’ll then wait for the kid to be ready to take Jarod’s place.


Knowing who his parents are, he should become the best pretender we’ve ever had.


Our last request concerns Catherine Parker; we know she’s still alive and we are also aware that all your efforts to silence her were inconclusive.


She and Margaret Charles will certainly try to make contact with Jarod and Miss Parker to help them finding the truth. Jarod is looking for them, he’ll do whatever he can to reunite with his mother, but we must prevent this.


The consequences of a meeting between them would be catastrophic.


Don’t disappoint me again, Mr. Raines.



Miss Parker was shocked, and maybe for the first time in her life she was really afraid. Not only her life was in danger, now, but also Michael’s, and her baby’s. Jarod crumpled up the paper and threw it in the fireplace, Ethan was looking at him with resignation.


This is what Angelo was talking about.” Parker finally realized, nodding to herself.


“You became expendable, sis. They know what you mean to Jarod, they want to kill you before you help him destroying The Centre.”


“And they want to keep our mothers away from us.” Jarod interjected him with scorn and anger.


“This mail was addressed to Raines. You really think he’d kill his own daughter, now that he revealed you the truth?” Ethan asked Miss Parker.


“Maybe it was just another way to deceive me and distract me while he summoned a hangman for his fork.” she pointed out, sarcastically.


“This is not the time for jokes, Parker.” Jarod reproached her. “This is getting serious. I must take you away from here, some place you can hide. Then Ethan and I can plan and make you leave the country. Europe, maybe Australia – ”


“Or maybe Mars!” Miss Parker shouted, standing up with indignation. “Jarod, I’m not leaving without a fight! This was just the appetizer, but there are other courses before the dessert. If Hasani is serious, they won’t kill me until they find you, and this won’t happen as long as I’m alive. And they don’t know that we know the truth about Michael. They don’t know you’re already working with the authorities to uncover The Centre dirty trades. And they don’t know that our mothers already left us a message.”


Jarod stood up with her. “Parker, you can’t be so stubborn not to realize that we’re talking about your life and also our son and daughter’s.”


“You think I don’t know that?” she yelled in response. “I’m the one who’s pregnant!”


Jarod snorted, “I know that, and that’s why I want you to go as far as possible from Blue Cove. God only knows when Raines is going to set his sweepers on you, look what just happened with Sydney!”


Jarod ran towards the window and started to look through it, with a paranoid attitude that really didn’t suit him.


Ethan couldn’t blame him, though. The voices were talking like crazy inside his head.


“I leave you two alone, I need to…get some rest.” he informed them, realizing that his siblings needed to decide what to do.


Parker mentally excused herself with Ethan, hoping that he would understand what she was feeling for Jarod. She was tired of his continuous attempts to protect her.


She approached him at the window and gave him her gun. “Take this.” she said.


He stared at the weapon almost in disgust.


“You need this, if you want to defend me against my potential killers, don’t you?”


Of all the excuses Jarod would have thought she would make, this wasn’t actually on the list.


“You can’t protect me if they really want to kill me, Jarod. And you’ve never believed that happiness is a warm gun.” She quoted one of her favorite songs.


“People can change!” he answered, but confusion was evident in his eyes. Even if his words told a different story, he was looking at the weapon with disgust.


“We both know how this is going to end. I’ll go back to The Centre tomorrow as if nothing happened. And you won’t be able to sleep, so you’ll probably call Sydney in the middle of the night to confess him your fears and ask him to protect me, whatever it takes.”


Jarod sighed. Did she know him so well?


“He will promise to do anything he can to help me and keep me safe, as he’s done in the last thirty years.”


Jarod turned around to look her, “You forgot the part where I get to The Centre in secret to take Michael and we leave to reach the other side of the world.”


Miss Parker smiled, she knew he would never do that. Jarod was challenging her, but he knew this was a lost cause.


“For a genius, sometimes you say very stupid things.” she mocked him.


At that moment, Jarod’s phone rang. Not many people would call at that time. Parker took the chance to put the safety to her gun and take it back in her bedroom.


“What?” Jarod answered the phone.


Andrea Zane’s voice replied from the other end, “Jarod, I’m it’s late, but I’ve got important news.”


“It’s never too late to do the right thing!” he answered, smiling.


“You were right about The Centre and its sponsors. We’ve got a long list of children who were kidnapped during the sixties. Even if they came from different countries, the similarities of their disappearances make us think that there was a sofisticated plan behind their abductions.”


“Did you discover the children’s names?” Jarod asked, a bit worried.


Zane waited a few seconds, “Yeah, the list was sent to us by a very trusted source, a Middle Man who’s been giving intel to F.B.I. and N.S.A. for years, even if we don’t know who he is.”


Zane waited a couple of seconds before asking the next question, “Jarod, you were one of those children?”


Jarod felt the need to be honest to the woman who was helping him, “It’s complicated. But that’s not important. Did you find anything about the benefactors of The Centre in Africa?”


Zane nodded even before answering, “I told you, I still need an access from the inside. They tell me we need a door, not visible to them, but only to us. If they discovered you, it would be dangerous.”


“You have no idea.” Jarod agreed.


Zane didn’t understand what Jarod had to do with that place, “What’s going on, Jarod? Something tells me that you know much more than you want me to believe. And something tells me that the Alex of that list of kidnapped children is the same chameleon we’ve been chasing together last year.”


“Zane, please, try and go on with the investigation without including my name. I will provide you that access from the inside, but you have to trust me.”


Zane sighed, “I made the big mistake of not believing you, once. And then I had to change my mind. I really want to trust you, Jarod, but I’m being pressured, too. My boss wanna know where I got the intel.”


Jarod had an epiphany. Maybe it was time to involve his family.


“Listen, I’ll contact my father. He can meet you and he knows the whole story, he can witness against The Centre.”

Jarod sensed Miss Parker’s presence behind him. She had listened to the last part of the conversation and she look thrilled.


Finally, Jarod was going to reveal the truth about The Centre to the authorities, even if that meant putting Broots, Sydney and herself in danger.


“Your father? He has information about that place?”


“You betcha. He lives with a boy, a kid who was kidnapped by The Centre, we helped him escape just some time ago. He can tell you what happens there, he will explain how they intended to exploit his abilities.”


“Jarod – ” Zane wasn’t completely convinced, “There are people, here…they keep asking what happened to you, after the chameleon’s death. Not everybody believes that you were on the right side. I don’t know if I can cover for you for long; sooner or later someone is going to put two and two together and realize that you were the person behind this investigation.”


“I just need some more time. Three days tops.” Jarod begged her, while he looked at Miss Parker. Three days and all the vip members of the Triumvirate would be gathered together at The Centre.


“Three days.” Zane agreed.


“Thanks, Andrea.”


After hanging up, Jarod closed the distance between himself and Miss Parker. “We have 48 hours to figure out our counter-offensive. I need Broots to help me open that door; Zane must get that access to The Centre archives.”


“Even if the two of you manage to create a connection without being discovered, which I strongly doubt, they couldn’t read the files.” Parker replied.


“The Centre’s is split in different databases; the server map was created on the basis of one of my simulations. I know exactly how it works, and I know that you can bypass that.”


Parker shook her head, “Those files were split on different Data Annex throughout the States, Jarod. It won’t be easy to access all of them, you should have about…twenty different access codes to penetrate the various databases, and you could decode the documents only with all the keys, because their encryption is switched in about thirty different locations!”


“39 different locations.” Jarod specified, reaching for his laptop. “I’ve localized just 38 of them. I’ve never known the actual location of the last Data Annex, that is top secret information, inaccessible.”


“A dead end.” Parker commented, looking at the map appearing on Jarod’s computer.


“You’re right about this, we can’t do nothing without the last location.” He admitted.


At that very moment, Ethan reappeared in the room, wearing a more comfortable shirt and a pair of slight trousers.


“You stop fighting, guys?” he asked, ironically.


When Ethan looked at the Data Annex map, he recognized it, “I know that.”


Jarod and Parker looked at each other, then stared at Ethan. “Meaning?”


“Mr. Raines, he made me develop this server-net years ago. He said it was a project to speed up The Centre data transmission, but I never got the specifics.”


“Ethan, these 38 stations are the key to gain access to all the secrets of The Centre.” Jarod informed his brother. “All the archives.”


“There’s something wrong, though. I planned for 39 of them.” Ethan gently noticed.


Jarod couldn’t wait anymore, his voice full of hope. “Do you remember the location of the one that’s missing in this map?”


Parker was hanging on his words. Ethan stretched out his hand and indicated a point on the map, “The thirty-ninth had to be in a neuralgic point, Jarod. I’m surprised you didn’t realize on your own.”


Jarod smirked, “The Centre.”


“Where nobody would expect it to be.” Ethan commented, patting his brother’s shoulder.


Jarod grinned, he’d never been happier. Parker chuckled, “You’re a genius, little brother!”


“More than Jarod?”


Parker hushed for a second, Jarod was staring at her, “Well, if we manage to get the access to the archives, I’ll have to concede Ethan the labrat-of-the-year prize, boy genius.”


Jarod smiled, “I can deal with that.”

Chapter End Notes:

Reviews would be very appreciated! :)

Here are the lyrics to the songs mentioned in this chapter.

"My Hero"

Too alarming now to talk about
Take your pictures down and shake it out
Truth or consequence, say it aloud
Use that evidence, race it around

There goes my hero
Watch him as he goes
There goes my hero
He's ordinary

Don't the best of them bleed it out
While the rest of them peter out
Truth or consequence, say it aloud
Use that evidence, race it around

There goes my hero
Watch him as he goes
There goes my hero
He's ordinary

Kudos, my hero
Leaving all the best
You know my hero
The one that's on

There goes my hero
Watch him as he goes
There goes my hero
He's ordinary
There goes my hero
Watch him as he goes
There goes my hero
He's ordinary

"Walking After You"

Tonight I'm tangled in my blanket of clouds
dreaming aloud
things just won't do without you
matter of fact
I'm on your back

if you walk out on me
I'm walking after you

if you'd accept surrender
I'll give up some more
weren't you adored
I cannot be without you
matter of fact
I'm on your back

if you walk out on me
I'm walking after you

another heart cracked
in two
I'm on your back


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