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23 June 2008 @ 03:09 pm
Numb3rs Fic: Vice - Part 21  

Title: Vice - Part 21
Series/Universe: Vice
Pairing/Characters: See Series post
Rating: NC17
Spoilers: Seasons 1, 2 and 3
Summary: Ian makes his play to take down Don and the Eppes empire (AU)
Notes/Warnings: Read the disclaimer on my LJ

Friday, 6/29/07 - Day

"Do you really think we can talk Liz into giving up her freelance status to run the new club?"

Don paged through Charlie's latest spreadsheet on his laptop as he talked to Megan on his cell phone, bracing himself slightly as his limousine took a sharp turn heading for the freeway.

"Millie and Terry both think she'd settle down if the offer was good enough."

"We just need to figure out what kind of offer..." Before Don could finish his sentence a police car appeared in front of the limousine, blocking its path just as a second police car came to a screeching halt behind them, blocking them in. "Shit. Keep the code black going, Megan. I'm getting pulled over and it looks bad."

"Not again!" Megan exclaimed, incredulous. "Edgerton?"

Don quickly shut down his laptop as police officers surrounded the car, guns drawn. He glanced around and finally spotted Ian's car behind the black and white to the rear of them.

"Yes. Get Howard on this now." Don snapped the cell closed and tossed it aside as his bodyguards in the front seat were being pulled out of the car at gunpoint. A second later the back door opened and he held his hands up. "I'm unarmed," he explained calmly. "Just let me know what you want me to do."

"Step out of the vehicle and keep your hands where I can see them."

Don got out carefully and put his hands on the roof, waiting patiently.

"May I ask what this is about?"

"What it's about," a familiar voice said behind him, "is that you're a low-life criminal and I'm about to put you in a cage with the other vermin where you belong."

Don directed his comments to the nearest uniform, ignoring Ian. "You should be aware that a complaint has been filed against this detective and if you facilitate his harassment of myself and my employees you too will be named in the suit against the police department."

"Don't listen to him," Ian scoffed. "Did you check to make sure there wasn't anyone else in the limo?" He ducked partway inside the car briefly then emerged. The uniforms were busy frisking and handcuffing the bodyguards so he called out to the nearest of them. "I've got this one." He handcuffed Don and started frisking him. "Oh, what do we have here?" He held up a small vial containing white powder.

"You planted that on me!" Don huffed.

Ian ignored him. "Probable cause, boys! Search the limo!"

Once the two bodyguards were safely ensconced in the back of one of the police cars, the two uniforms started searching the limousine. Within seconds the one searching the back seat pulled out holding a brick of drugs.

"You've got to be kidding!" Don cried. "You planted drugs on me twice? Just how desperate are you?" He got the attention of the uniforms. "I want you both to remember that the detective had access to the back of the car prior to the search and that neither of you frisked me before he did."

Ian clucked. "Sorry, Eppes. Looks like your charmed life is finally coming to an end."

"Only in your sick fantasy world, Edgerton. My lawyer will have me out so fast..."

"Oh, I don't think so," Ian interrupted, gloating. "You see I have a witness, a known drug dealer, all set to testify that you're his supplier. Your fancy attorney can't argue that away. And you should know I've got AUSA Brickle on my side. He's ready for me to press charges against you and your brother. He even promised me you'd be sent to separate prisons." Ian leaned in close, lowering his voice so only Don could hear him. "Of course the irony is that Brickle's dirty, but he's not in your pocket - he's in Tuttle's. And Tuttle? He'd love to see you and Charlie go away for good. In fact, I think he's the only person who will enjoy it more than I will, so he's going to make sure Alvin prosecutes you to the fullest extent of the law and then some."

"Bastard," Don swore. "I'll still beat it."

"Maybe," Ian said, smug. "But while you're tied up in jail? You won't be able to protect your baby brother. And I have such plans for him..." He leaned in close to whisper in Don's ear. "His ass is mine."

"No!" Don yelled.

"Take this piece of garbage down to the station," Ian ordered the officer near him. "I have other business to attend to."

"You're not getting anywhere near him, Edgerton!" Don shouted as the uniforms forced him into the back of the second police car.

Ian smiled, vicious and victorious.

"I got to you, didn't I? I can get to him. After all, I'm the law."



"Mr. Meeks, this is Lieutenant Gary Walker of the LAPD."

Howard sat bolt up and snapped his fingers briskly to get his assistant's attention. "Yes, Lieutenant Walker, what can I do for you?"

When she heard the name, she automatically dialed Megan on Howard's second desk phone.

"Howard Meeks again for Megan, urgent," she said under her breath then hit the speakerphone button as Howard did the same on his phone.

"This is a courtesy call," Gary said, his voice filling the room, artificially formal. "One of your clients was brought into custody just now: Don Eppes. He's being charged with possession with intent to distribute."

Howard gaped. "Based on what evidence?" he blurted out, stunned.

"A kilo of cocaine was recovered in his limousine by Detective Ian Edgerton. He found a vial of cocaine on Mr. Eppes' person and proceeded from there to search his vehicle. The drugs have been taken into evidence and Mr. Eppes, his driver and his bodyguard were brought into custody pending arraignment."

"Thank you for letting me know. I'll be there as fast as I can."


Gary rang off and Howard turned his attention to the phone Megan's call was on. "Megan?"

"This is far worse than we thought," she said, her voice strained with stress and anger. "If Edgerton's reduced to framing Don then he has no more boundaries. He'll do anything it takes to bring us down. It's showtime, Howard. This is what we pay you the big money for. You need to get him out of there and you need to keep Edgerton from using this to get warrants on our properties. If he gets access to even one location it's game over."

"I'm putting my whole staff on it right now," Howard said, typing furiously between gestures of instruction to his assistant. "The writs we discussed earlier aren't going to do us any good if they've got that kind of evidence, so we'll have to come up with an entirely different strategy. I'll be there at the police station with you as quickly as I can after I get the ball rolling here. Trust me, none of us wants Edgerton to win this fight."

Megan's voice was icy cold. "He will not win. I don't care what it takes. This thing with Edgerton? He's the one going down, not us."


"Charlie, please!" Colby begged, ducking when a heavy book came crashing past his head. "You have to try to calm down!"

"Don't fucking tell me to calm down!" Charlie shouted. "My brother is sitting in jail on some trumped up drug charge! You give me one good reason why I should be calm!"

"It doesn't solve anything," Colby ventured. "Don needs you to keep your head. He needs us working on getting him out of there, on protecting the business in case we get raided."

Charlie looked pensive all of a sudden, his pacing slowing to a halt as he tossed aside the book he'd picked up to throw next.

"Don needs me..." he murmured. After a moment his head snapped up and he looked almost surprised to see Colby standing there. "Get out of here," he chastened. "Go help Megan and Howard or something." As Colby turned to leave, Charlie called after him. "Find me Alejandro and get him here now - don't care what it takes, I need to talk to him."

"Alejandro?" Colby asked, confused. "Sure, I'll send him right over."

After he left, Charlie paced the floor, sometimes talking to himself, sometimes looking as if he was solving a particularly difficult math problem. Finally the pieces fell into place and he looked up, content, just in time to see Alejandro knock at the partially open door.

"You wanted to see me?" he said tentatively.

"Yes!" Charlie all but dragged him into the room and shut the door behind him. "I need you to do something for me, right away."

"Anything," Alejandro responded, clearly cowed.

Charlie's hand was fisted in Alejandro's shirt, his tension was so high.

"I need you to call Edgerton as your photography contact and tell him where I'm going to be and when. I don't care what you have to say to get him there, just get him there..."



Kim had to jog to catch up to Ian on his way back to the Vice squad room.

"Hall!" He greeted her with an unusually delighted smile, wolfish almost.

"I got your message," she said, looking confused. "You arrested Don? For what?"

Ian looked smug. "Doesn't matter. In a few hours I'll have enough evidence to sink his entire crew."

"What charge, Ian?" Kim asked again, her expression stern.

Ian shrugged. "Oh, just possession with intent to distribute. Found a kilo of coke in his limo. The charge is only good for 5-10 years by itself, but if it gets me the evidence for the Cooper murder case? Eppes will get the sentence he really deserves."

Kim shook herself out of her astonishment and rummaged in her purse for a few seconds before shouldering the bag again and staring down Ian.

"Don's not into drugs! And nobody's going to believe someone that smart would just leave some laying around in his limo!" She lowered her voice and stepped closer to Ian. "You planted those drugs in Don's car, didn't you, Ian?"

"So what if I did?" Ian bragged. "I only did it to get the scumbag off the street. With him arrested, I can get warrants for all his properties and find the evidence I need to nail him for murder."

"Ian!" Kim protested. "You're not serious!"

"Oh, I'm dead serious," he said, walking off down the hall. "And since California has a death penalty? Eppes is just plain dead..."

Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on June 23rd, 2008 10:07 pm (UTC)
Please see the Vice Series post for information on this Series and for the Part 21 Confession.


Emma DeMarais
hear me roar: Oh Shit/Georgie and Blairmagisterequitum on June 23rd, 2008 10:17 pm (UTC)
Squee!! You have no idea how this had made my day.

I love it and this series so much. Ian! You bastard. This will not end well for you. That I am sure of.

And Charlie! What the hell are you doing?

Oooh. I like Kim getting mad. No way she's going to sit by and do nothing.

Now, I am off to read Part 21's Confession.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 23rd, 2008 10:23 pm (UTC)
Squee!! You have no idea how this had made my day.

Mine too. You have no idea how much good that single squee did. It's been so long since I published Vice I kind of flinched doing so, worried about the reception it would get.

(I also admit to rewriting a little of the climax out of worry so that gives you an idea of how nervous I am about it.)

I am excited though for tomorrow, when everyone gets to see just what Charlie is up to, how scary Ian can be, what side Kim's loyalties really fall on and more!

The Epilogue? That's more the icing on the cake and a taste of what's to come in the sequel Virtue. :-)

Thanks for your support of this series. It's meant a lot to me.
riverotter1951: north American river otterriverotter1951 on June 23rd, 2008 11:50 pm (UTC)
Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

I am looking forward to tomorrow and the epilogue.

This is a marvelous AU and i eagerly await the rest of the ride.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 24th, 2008 01:14 am (UTC)
Thank you!

The rest of the universe - in my head at least - is fantastic, complex, compelling and indeed quite a ride. I just wish it wasn't going to take me so long to write all 500,000 odd words of it. ;-)
andi: Don Dark Avengeradmiralandrea on June 24th, 2008 05:18 am (UTC)
I'm *so* glad you were finally able to get back to posting this for us. Once it's done, I'm looking forward to going back and re-reading the whole thing in one swell foop *g*

In the meantime, Ian's gonna get his and I have a sneaky feeling I know why Kim was rummaging in her handbag ;-)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 24th, 2008 05:23 am (UTC)
Cool! I'm planning on offering it as a single file via email (txt or doc format) so people who want to read it all at once don't have to hassle with 8 million LJ posts.

I reread it last weekend before I started writing it again and I found I'd really missed this universe. It's so much richer and more complex than any other one I've written that it makes writing drabbles pale in comparison.

About Kim's handbag... Too bad Ian doesn't think about why Kim was rummaging in her handbag. Hehehe

Thanks for your support of Vice! Your comments over the months have always made me happy.
andi: Don Dark Avengeradmiralandrea on June 24th, 2008 05:27 am (UTC)
Ooh, I like the sound of having it all in one file. Saves having to copy and paste it all myself!

Yeah, Ian really should have picked up on the handbag thing *g*

No probs. I really have enjoyed reading it and I look forward to the next installment in this universe.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 24th, 2008 05:32 am (UTC)
Once the Epilogue is posted I'll make the full file available. I figure there are a few people out there who waited to read until it was done plus a few who want to reread now that it's all in one piece.

Or there might be two of you and I'm just deluded. ;-)
andi: Don Dark Avengeradmiralandrea on June 24th, 2008 02:38 pm (UTC)
Cool! I wouldn't have the patience to wait for the whole story to be finished. I'm not very good at delaying gratification ;-)

And I'm sure there'll be more than just two of us!
Karen: numb3rs ianbyrons_brain on June 29th, 2008 01:08 pm (UTC)
::shivers:: Ian is so bad! great chapter....
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on May 23rd, 2009 04:18 am (UTC)
Man, you're just blasting through this! At the climax already! Wow!

/waits anxiously for you to finish and give your pronouncement on the experience/