I do not own Carmen Sandiego in any way, shape, or form.

This was written for the Carmen Sandiego Amino S2 writing prompt. I haven't watched the second season yet, so I'm way behind. I wrote this to make up for it. Hope you enjoy!

Carmen huffed as she slid around a corner. She fought to level her breathing as she glanced back. Footsteps raced in her direction and Carmen kept herself pressed flat against the corner. The operatives chasing her ran directly passed the crevice she was hiding in and she grinned.

Gets'em every time.

She poked her head out to make sure they were gone further into the cave before slipping from the wall and stealing through the dark, back toward the entrance.

Before she could make it, a light flared in front of her. Someone else was coming! Who would be coming to this cave in the middle of the night, though? It's not like anyone else knew about VILE's stash of priceless stolen gems. Deciding to dwell on that later, Carmen retreated back the way she'd come.

"Are you sure this is the last place she was sighted, Agent Argent?" Agent Imani asked quietly, shining her flashlight all around. "It doesn't look like there's anything here..."

"I'm positive," Julia replied, also shining her own flashlight. She moved it over the walls and ceiling carefully, not wanting to miss a detail. "The witness specified this cave."

Imani hummed. "Should we split up? There's a lot of ground to cover."

Julia glanced about. "Yes, that might be optimal. Meet back at the entrance in half an hour?"

"And com if we find anything," Imani agreed, striding off.

Julia moved along the walls, carefully scoping out anything that might be useful. She felt butterflies in her stomach at the thought of running into Carmen Sandiego directly. She still couldn't fully reconcile the woman that had left her the rescued Magna Carta with Inspector Devineaux's disoriented condition. It made no sense.

Still... Julia took a deep breath. If she was going to get to the bottom of anything, she needed to do her job and find Carmen Sandiego. Carmen was the answer to... at least some of her questions.

Carmen grumbled silently as she watched the two newcomers move further into the cave. This was just great. She needed to wait until both of them were far enough in to slip out unnoticed. One of them was clearly less careful with her flashlight than the other, so that would be the one Carmen slipped by.

She waited until the woman had passed and taken a few more paces forward. Cautiously, Carmen slid from her crevice and crept toward the cave entrance. Before she made it, though, she spotted a familiar face and turned back with a small gasp.

The woman from the train! If memory served right, that woman was Devineaux's work partner. What was she doing here? Was she sent to this place to investigate? No, no, no! Carmen couldn't let another one of them get hurt. She already felt so bad about Devineaux.

Taking a deep breath, Carmen groaned. She really didn't need hypercompetent law enforcement on her tail, but if it kept Jules out of trouble...

Carmen set her jaw. "I owe her... for what happened with Devineaux, at least."

Making up her mind, Carmen stood from where she was crouching to remain hidden. Taking a deep breath, she stepped over to Julia. Just a pace or two away, she cleared her throat.

Julia jumped slightly and spun around, her flashlight catching on the very bright red of a trench coat. Her eyes widened and she stepped back defensively. "Carmen Sandiego," she said quietly.

"Good to see you again, Jules," Carmen chuckled. "So, what's got you running around dark caves in the middle of the night?"

"You do, actually," Julia replied in a calm, if slightly cold, voice.

Carmen placed a hand to her chest, feigning shock. "Me? What did I ever do?"

"You have information on what happened to Inspector Devineaux," Julia explained. She was doing a good job of keeping her cool, but if Carmen really was to blame for Devineaux's condition and chose to attack, Julia wasn't fully equipped to defend herself.

Carmen hummed at Julia's remark. "I see... So, in order to get info on the details about that night, you need to catch me. Is that right?"

"Smart as always." Julia felt sweat bead on her forehead. This was it. The moment of truth. There were two options for Carmen Sandiego. Run or fight.

"Alright then," Carmen shrugged. "But like I said, you'll have to catch me first." She winked and bolted for the exit.

Julia immediately gave chase with relief. No way was she letting Carmen Sandiego slip by that easily. She quickly pressed her com and called, "Agent Imani, I've found Carmen Sandiego. Am in pursuit toward cave entrance now."

"Got it, Argent," Imani called from the other end. "On my way!" Julia smiled and put her focus into catching up with her runner.

Carmen laughed as she darted from the cave entrance. Good. With any luck, Jules had phoned in for backup, which meant her agent friend would be leaving the cave soon, too. All she needed to do was get them both away from where any trigger-happy VILE agents could get them.

Slipping through the trees, Carmen made sure her pace stayed slow enough for Julia to keep an eye on her. It wouldn't do for her to think Carmen had returned to the cave. That would defeat the purpose of the chase.

Stopping at a steep riverbank, Carmen turned calmly to face her pursuer. "I suppose this is where we part," she called.

Julia eyed her carefully. Carmen Sandiego was cunning and intuitive. If she thought she could escape despite the steep drop at her back, Julia needed to be on guard. "How do you think so?"

Carmen shrugged. "Just a hunch." She cleared her throat. "Before I go, though... I'm sorry." Julia tilted her head in confusion. "About Devineaux. I'm sorry. And I would love to give you more information, but I'm kinda a little tied up at the moment."

"Then how am I to take your word for anything?" Julia demanded. Internally, she was even more conflicted than before. Carmen was admitting that she had an involvement in what happened, but she was apologizing for it. Super secret criminal masterminds didn't apologize, at least not to Julia's knowledge. What in the world was going on?

Carmen only smiled. "Call it a leap of faith," she chuckled, beginning to fall backward. "We'll have our talk one day, Jules. Just not today."

Julia rushed closer as Carmen disappeared over the edge. She heard a strange whir and spotted a wire snagging on a tree on the other side of the riverbank. Carmen pulled herself up before she could touch the water below. With a last bow, she disappeared into the trees.

Julia sighed. Now she had even more questions than before. She was certain Carmen Sandiego was still the good person in this whole mess. But that didn't stop things from still being messy and complicated. It would be so much easier if she could get a direct answer out of someone.

Pressing her com, Julia called, "Agent Imani, I lost her. Across the riverbank."

She heard a soft sigh on the other end. "Figured when your triangulated location stopped moving. On my way to pick you up."

Julia leaned against a tree and settled in to wait. All the while, wondering who was really behind Devineaux's condition, why they attacked him, whether Chief was right about the secret crime empire after all, and most importantly... Where in the world would Carmen Sandiego turn up next?

And there ya go!

Remember, sneak peeks and updates are available on my tumblr, gothalbinoangel-fanfiction. You can also ask questions, there. I'll be opening commissions again soon, too!