As soon as he saw the blood beneath Monica’s feet, Thomas knew the worst had happened. Not only had she probably lost the baby, but her condition was fragile as well.

He had just gone in to check on Jude and to tell him what happened with his interrogation. The man had ended up being a red herring unfortunately. They were figuring out their next steps when Monica came in and passed out with blood running down her legs.

Things moved quickly after, and he stood in the hallway staring at the puddle of blood on the floor as paramedics tended to her. Her father and Jude crowded around her, too, looking on desperately as the men did their job and prepared to get her to the ambulance.

“I’m going with her,” said Jude, who was still trying to convince everyone that, despite being shot in the arm, he was fine.

Thomas disagreed, but he knew there was no use in arguing with him. Jude would do what Jude wanted, and no one would change his mind.

“You can ride now, but I’ll stay with her overnight,” said her father. “You should get your rest. And I won’t take no for an answer.”

They were finally going to take Monica to the hospital for care, and even Dr. Morrison didn’t dispute that was the right call this time as they strapped her to a board.

Meredith had watched everything, too, with a look of concern set deep in her brow. And while there was no emotion or tears, she had comforted her father and Jude all the same. “It’s going to be okay. I’ll hold everything down while you’re gone.”

Jude looked at Thomas. “Edmond will be around if you need anything. I’ll deal with the rest when I get back.”

Thomas knew that was his discreet way of saying not to turn the other man loose. He still wanted a crack at him, and Thomas hoped if he left the man alone to think a while, he might remember more about the details of who hired him.

“No problem, man. Don’t worry about that.” He had enough to deal with already.

As soon as they were gone in the elevator, Meredith let out a heavy sigh and walked into the room, stepping over the small puddle. She found a bottle of cleaner under the sink and grabbed a roll of paper towels to clean it up.

“Do you need any help?” he asked.

“No,” she said. “I can manage just fine, thank you.”

“It’s not a problem,” he said, thinking she probably didn’t want him to have to clean up her sister’s blood.

“You should go,” she said in a firm tone as she knelt to clean the floor. “I’m sure Jude will call and fill you in when he gets a chance.”

He could tell that she wanted to be alone and decided to give her what she wanted. It had to be traumatic seeing someone you cared about fall out like that.

“Let me know if you need anything,” he told her, trying his best to be helpful.

She didn’t say anything as he walked away, and he didn’t let the cold shoulder get to him too much, although he did feel it was quite noticeable and unwarranted.

He waited for the elevator, and when he went down to his floor, he realized that Rosalynn had no idea what was going on. She had been in her room through everything.

She would have wanted to know that her best friend had been taken to the hospital, so Thomas decided to pay her a visit and tell her about it.

He walked to her door and knocked. When she answered, she seemed surprised to see him standing there.

“Is there something wrong with our connecting doors?” she asked, stepping aside to let him in. “I was sure it wasn’t you at this door. But I have to say, I’m glad it is.”

He walked inside and let out a heavy breath. He hated to be the bearer of bad news, but he was the only one who could tell her. “I wasn’t in my room. I just came from upstairs. I wanted to tell you that they’ve taken Monica to the hospital. They’re pretty sure she’s lost the baby.”

A look of horror twisted Rosalynn’s expression as she put her hand to her mouth. “Oh heavens,” she said. “That’s horrible.” Tears slid down her cheeks immediately, and she walked away to get a tissue.

“I figured you would want to know. They just left with her a few minutes ago.” Thomas wished he could offer her some more comfort, but the situation was terrible all the way around.

“Thank you for letting me know,” she said, going to sit on the sofa as she wiped her eyes. “What about Monica? How is she doing? Is she in any danger too?”

“I don’t know,” he said, giving a shrug. “She just passed out. I wish I could say, but at least she’s going to a hospital this time. They can check her out and make sure things are done properly. I don’t know why she wasn’t brought there to begin with.” That had never made any sense to him. Her father seemed more of a chemist than a physician.

Rosalynn nodded. “I know why. Her father is so worried that she’ll be found with unusual drugs in her system, and that might lead to investigations about him and more questions than he wants to answer. So, he set up this facility here so that he could help his clients privately. He has one on his private island, too. Or at least that’s what I’ve heard.”

“I guess that’s part of being wealthy.”

“Well, I had to sign a waiver saying I’d only use his special list of physicians from now on. I can’t even use my family physician, and I’ve been seeing him since I was a kid.”

“It just seems like a lot of trouble.” Thomas couldn’t believe there had been so much put in place just for one drug. “Are you sure you’ve done the right thing by taking it?” Surely one day, she would want to start a family with the right man. It seemed like a terrible risk to take.

“I feel fine,” she said. “But I will say, I do not feel like I thought I would. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I can tell it’s working, but it’s not what I expected. I feel like myself for the most part.”

“Well, I think that’s a good thing. It’s better than feeling unlike yourself. I worry about the long term, is all. What happens when it’s time for you to take a second dose?”

“I’d rather not think about it now, honestly. What’s done is done, and I’ll figure it out when the time comes, which hopefully isn’t for a while now.” She gave him an uneasy look. “Besides, Monica was fine for months, apparently. So, I should be fine too.”

She let out a heavy sigh and looked at Thomas. “Let’s change the subject. How did the mission go? Did you find out anything?”

Thomas realized there was much more to tell her. “Oh, I didn’t realize you didn’t know.”

“Know what?” she asked. “Don’t tell me you lost them. Did the whole thing fall apart?”

He hadn’t realized she was so invested. It was nice to have someone who cared. “No, the plan worked, but Jude was shot.”

“Shot!” she said as her eyes widened. “Is he going to be okay?”

“Yeah, he’s going to be fine. The bullet went in and out fairly cleanly. Dr. Morrison patched him up.”

“Oh, that’s good,” she said, letting go of a sigh of relief. “Does Monica know about it?”

“Yeah, she knows, but I’m not sure if she really grasped it. It upset her, yes, but she didn’t seem herself.”

“She hasn’t been herself lately,” said Rosalynn. “So he was shot. What else happened? Did you get the men? Did they get away?”

“No, they didn’t. We brought one of them back here to question him. I’m hoping he’ll give us some information.”

“Wait, just one of them?”

“Don’t ask,” he said, making a face. He hadn’t meant to shoot anyone, but it was self-defense and in defense of Jude. Besides, he owed him one. “Trust me. You’d rather not know.”

“So what happened? Did he tell you anything? Does he know who killed my brother?”

Thomas wished things had gone down that way. “No. It turns out we were duped.”

“I don’t understand,” she said, putting her tissue to her eye.

“The real culprits must have caught wind that we were onto them after Jude’s run-in, and they hired other people knowing that we’d go after them instead. And I hate to say it worked, but they fooled us. They followed me to the university in the same car the others had used, and from there, we were onto them.”

“So, was it all for nothing?” Rosalynn said, shaking her head. “That’s crazy.”

“Well, not exactly. Thankfully, they got paid for their services. So, I got the man to tell me where he picked up his paycheck. He gave me the address of the house and even described a woman who met him there. He said it was a nice place. I need to see what I can find out about it.”

“Are you going there?” she asked.

“Well, eventually, we will. But I’ll have to scope it out first. With Jude’s injury and what happened to Monica and the baby, I’m sure I’m going to have to go at it alone.”

“I’d like to help if I can,” she said. “Though I’m not sure what I could do. But if you can think of anything, I’m here.”

Her offer surprised him. “How good are you at research?” he asked, glad to have her pitch in if she was serious about helping.

Rosalynn gave him an unsure look. “I’m good at hiring someone to do it for me.”

“I’m afraid that won’t help me.” He gave a half-hearted chuckle. “But thanks anyway.”

“Hey, it can’t be that hard,” she said with a shrug. “And I don’t know if it counts, but I’m willing to try. And I’m sure I can figure anything out. It can’t be harder than the work I do for my family business.”

“That’s good enough for me. I’ll take all the help I can get.” He was sure she could at least help him look for information.

“It’s not like I’m doing anything else. I’ve already made all of my calls, and I don’t have any meetings scheduled for the rest of the day. Besides, it will make the time pass much faster. I definitely could use a distraction. I can’t help but worry about Monica.”

“I’m sure she’s going to be fine.” He hated to mislead her, but he didn’t like seeing her worry. And with him not knowing the truth, it wasn’t strictly untrue. Monica could be fine for all he knew.

“I hope so. She’s going to be devastated she lost the baby, but she’s strong. She’ll get through it. They both will.”

“Yeah, I know how tough it is for Jude. I really hoped they’d both be fine, but at least they’ll have each other to get through this.”

“Yeah,” she said. “It’s good to have someone to go through the tough times with.” She gave him a longing look, and Thomas couldn’t help but feel a tug at his heartstrings. Part of him wanted to scoop her up and hold her, but the other part knew that he had to keep it together.

Rosalynn let out a sigh. “Does Meredith know?”

“Yeah, she was there when it happened. She had just come to tell us we were too loud and disturbing Monica, and Monica got up and walked into the exam room, where she passed out.”

“Just when I think it’s time to go home,” she said. “Something tells me I should stay. She might need me when she gets home.”

“Agreed. At least until we figure out who is at this house. I want to start with who owns it and its history. I’ll probably do a few stakeouts too. That will give me an idea of who lives there.” He couldn’t wait to see Alice, knowing that she was probably the brown-haired girl Blue had witnessed. “I hear it’s in a really fancy neighborhood and quite nice. So, I am assuming whoever lives there is wealthy.”

“It sounds like it could be one of Dr. Morrison’s clients after all.”

“It’s a possibility.” Even though Jude had hoped they weren’t, Thomas knew it was someone who had a lot of knowledge about Clarity.

“If the home has been there for some time now, perhaps I’ll know who might have lived there. I’ve been in Caldwell for years, and I know just about everyone.”

“I hadn’t thought of that, but you just might.” If she had a lot of knowledge of the city, there was a good chance she did know who owned the home or something about the people living there. It was possible that Ramsey knew them, too, as well as Gavin.

“See, I can be helpful,” she said. “And who knows? Maybe I’ll find my new calling. Detective Radford has a nice ring to it.”

“Let’s not get too carried away,” said Thomas, glad that she was excited to help. “I told Jude we need to make sure we do this right. They can’t know we’re coming. And I want to go in with more manpower and take them completely off guard.”

“I’ll definitely leave that part to you and Jude,” she said, giving him a nod of assurance.

Thomas tried to chuckle, but knowing Monica’s situation could take Jude down for the count left everything up in the air.

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