Murdock would never admit out loud that he took anything for granted. Anyone who knew him would insist the crazy pilot took everything and nothing for granted at the same time, because they couldn't figure him out. He was comfortable with that. If somebody figured you out, he thought, you'd blink out of existence because there'd be nothing about you that somebody else didn't know. And if somebody else knew everything about you, what was the point in your existence?
He didn't take his team for granted. They had gone through some pretty intense situations that involved coming very close to dying. He didn't take for granted any of their relationships - he'd earned their respect, their trust, as much as they'd earned his.
Someone who had yet to earn his trust, though, was Charissa Sosa.
Not that he didn't like her. Ever since she'd helped them escape all those months ago, and continued to help them with missions, he'd decided that she was really all right and that he wouldn't have to stop Face from making a Very Bad Decision. She seemed dependable. Reliable. And yet something nagged at the back of his head. He still didn't know if he could trust her to keep them. Hannibal brushed off his concerns and B.A. just shook his head. Face would have none of it. "You're being paranoid," he'd say, "stop it."
Murdock would go back to his little self and wonder.
It had been a couple of weeks since the whole gig of taking down the Human Trafficking ring. She had gone back before her superiors, lied through her teeth and was put back to work. But she knew they were watching, she wasn't stupid, it was one of the reasons why she had laid low for a couple of weeks, kept away from LA. But now she was missing him, she needed him and she was missing the others too. They had become such a part of her life now that if she went too long without their company it felt like something was missing and she couldn't keep still. She was home; a quiet evening as she tried to look up any available flights to LAX. Nothing. She frowned, there wasn't even anything leaving a nearby base that had a seat she could grab. She eyed the cell phone that contained only one number and drummed her nails for a moment in thought; maybe he could come to her? No. Bad idea, especially since right now she knew she was under the microscope. With a sigh she picked up the phone and hit send… a part of her wondering what ring he heard on his end when she called.
When Cyndi Lauper's Girls Just Want to have Fun began to ring from his phone, Murdock looked at it in astonishment. "El Diablo?" he breathed, before picking it up and answering it. He'd never gotten a call -outside of a mission- from Sosa, why was she calling him now? "I'm sorry, but you have reached a disconnected number - now if you feel you've reached this recording in error, how do you think I feel?"
"Murdock?" She blinked, removed the phone from her ear looked at it and then put it back to her ear, "Um… I meant to call Face, how did I get you?" This was new, maybe Face had his phone off and somehow it forwarded to Murdock's phone, she didn't even know Murdock had a cell.
"He turned on his call forwarding." Murdock tilted his head, leaning on an elbow. "Faceman and the others are off doing hero stuff. I can pass on a message, if you want."
She nodded slowly, "Ah. Well… I don't exactly have a message, more of a problem." And then an idea hit her, "Are you doing anything too exciting? I was going to come out a visit but I can't grab a flight. Everything's booked." Why not? She trusted Murdock and it would be a nice surprise for Face when he got done being a hero to come home and find her waiting for him.
"Not Air Murdock." he said, with a little smile on his face. Ever since the others had ditched him to go on a smaller mission that didn't need air back-up, he'd been lounging around their latest safe-house being bored. "Where are you, I'll pick you up."
She smiled, "D.C. I'll meet you at the same hanger you picked Face and I up at a couple of weeks ago?" She suggested, standing to go and make sure she had everything she needed, "So, see you in a few hours?" There was excitement in her tone.
"Absolutely!" he hung up with a grin and jumped off the tree branch he'd been hanging from, slipping down to the ground and eyeing the airfield he'd been observing for hours, watching the planes take off and land. He made his way to the transport vehicle entrance and then hopped into an unattended luggage cart.
She got things packed up and made a small side trip to the mall and picked up that IPod she had been promising and some CDs. After what turned into the perfect way to pass the waiting time of a few hours, Charissa left the mall after packing few newly purchased items into her suitcase and headed for the airport. She parked her car behind the hanger and grabbed her stuff wondering what sort of aerial machine the Pilot had commandeered this time.
Stealing the plane seemed almost too easy. It was a small airport, an airstrip barely guarded at all - and nobody seemed to mind that he was in the plane until it actually took off. A farmer ran out of the nearby barn waving his pitchfork, but didn't give chase once the plane was flying.
He landed cautiously in an area away from the main strips and taxied towards the hangars. He climbed out and was greeted by some mechanics, whom he let work on fuelling up before poking his nose around in an attempt to locate Sosa.
She turned the corner and there he was and so was the plane, it was a small. She gulped a little but strode forward, "Perfect timing." She held out a gift bag to him, "I got you something." She said with a smile, hoping he would enjoy the IPod Touch and the CDs. The CDs were collections from different decades.
"Ooooooooh!" he did a little excited dance, pulling the iPod out of the bag. "You did! And the selection, thanks!" he was looking at the collection and closed the bag with a smile. "Thank you. Your ride awaits, milady!" he gestured to the plane. The mechanics had left by now.
She grinned and followed him, "Seriously, thank you for this." She held back a frown when she realized she'd have to sit in the co-pilot's seat, she didn't mind flying… she just wasn't fond of smaller air craft. She put on a brave face however after securing her things and settled into the seat and strapped herself in, "So… this is going to be fun." She gave a nervous smile and took a deep breath to relax.
"Hopefully..." he turned his head to her, adjusting the microphone on his seat back. "Are you all right? You look a little pale."
"I'm good. I've just never been much for smaller planes." She licked her lips, "But I trust you." She gave him an assuring smile and tried not to grip her arm rests too tightly as they taxied off.
Murdock grinned as he pulled back on the throttle and gently eased them into the air. "Take-off and landing may be a bit rougher than you're used to," he admitted, "but I promise you'll survive it."
She nodded, "Alright." He was right about the rough take off, but she did indeed survive, "So what are they doing? Why didn't you go with them?" She was making conversation, trying to make the time pass and to distract herself from any little bumps and jolts that might happen as they flew.
"It's like when people call the fire trucks to get a cat out of a tree." he said in a dry voice. "Small-time thing. No air support needed." he was looking down at the controls every once in a while to monitor their travel.
"Oh. Does it bother you when you don't get to go?" She watched him, becoming fascinated with his attention and how skilfully he handled the plane, though this was the first time that she had ever sat up in the pilot area. Her eyes slowly drifted from watching him to looking at all the different buttons, knobs and such.
"Well, it makes me feel less useful." Murdock admitted, as he banked a little to the right. "I don't get mad, if that's what you mean, and I certainly don't hold grudges."
She nodded, "I understand." She sat back and watched out her side, her eyes following the changing scenery below them as it went from flat green land to mountains then desert and into mountains again. The hum of the engines was becoming relaxing and almost hypnotic. After a while she sighed, "It really is another world up here." She was getting a much different perspective by being in the front of the plane, she found it neat as they flew into a thick bank of clouds.
Murdock didn't even attempt to hold back. "A whole new world! A dazzling place I never knew! But when I'm way up here, it's crystal-clear, that now I'm in a whole new world with you!"
She laughed shaking her head slowly, "I walked right into that one didn't I." She mused and then blinked at the fact snow was slowly beginning to build alone the edges of the window, "Um… you've flown in a snow storm before right?" Surely he had, why had she even asked such a question? This man had probably flown in the worst conditions imaginable.
"Yes, but not in a plane that's not really equipped for it." Murdock said, trying not to let the sudden hot sickening lurch in his stomach flow into his words. He attempted to find the edges of the clouds, but it was too late. The plane wasn't designed to fly that high, so he couldn't go above the storm. And at this point, he couldn't go round it. "You may want to head into the back and see if there's some sweaters handy," he warned her, "it may get a little chilly in here soon."
"Okay." She stood and moved carefully into the back, "I don't see any sweaters but there's some blankets." She called up and grabbed them bringing them up with her. She got almost back to the cockpit when the plane made a shuddering movement causing her to lose her footing and stumble backwards, "What the hell was that?"
"Technical term escapes me, but the wind doesn't." Murdock said, glancing back at her for a moment. "Forget the blankets. Grab the parachutes. We're bailing out, because I can see the ground from here, but I can't see the mountains in front of me."
"We're what!" She blinked and looked around, "Um… what parachutes?" This wasn't good, "Can you land this thing maybe?" It was a thought even though she had no clue at all if it was possible or not as she swallowed back the fear that was crawling up her spine, "I'm not finding any parachutes Murdock." Certainly there would be some right?
"Oh, not good. Very not good. Very bad." Murdock groaned. "Then haul the blankets up here and grab your stomach, because this isn't going to be pretty."