redrose999 (redrose999) wrote in fm_alchemist,
redrose999
redrose999
fm_alchemist

Convergence Chapter 2

Convergence
A FMA, CSI Miami Crossover
Chapter 2
What IF, the Rocket, Edward, Alphonse and Deitlinde were on Arrived in sunny Miami in the 20th century?
Rating: PG-13
Fic type: Crossover, Mystery, Adventure
Warnings: SPOILERS for FMA, and CSI Miami. Implied Slash, and het.
Pairings: I don't plan them, but the characters write themselves, Ed/Hie past implied, if you read into things, kind of Elricesty, if you don't not Elricesty.
Characters: The Elric Brothers, Deitlinde Ekhart, and possible others and most of the CSI Miami cast with a smattering of Vegas.
Summery: The Elric's lives hang on thin threads and can't speak for themselves. What conculsions do the CSI's make about the Elrics and their lives from the evidence?

Chapter 2

The Evidence Tell No Lies,
It’s Just Understanding the Truth

The morgue was far from quiet that morning. It was difficult to
concentrate with all the movement in and out of the room, but after
the first hour Alexx Woods had become used to it. They were now
housing 19 armored corpses, from the crash site, and three fishermen.
All of which were waiting patiently for Alexx’s and her staff’s
careful attention, either in freezers or against the large
high-ceilinged room’s walls.

The morgue itself was a very large room, octagonal, with rows of
individual refrigerated units and glassed observation studios looking
down from above. The lighting was low, but the lab tables themselves
were brightly lit, with high-tech cameras and state of the art
monitoring devices. The lab itself had several steel tables, two of
which were fixed to the floor, and used for washing down bodies,
equipped with running water and drains. Cabinets and trays, scales and
other standard equipment were scattered about the room, most of them
on wheels so the pathologist in question could move them to where they
were needed.

Two stainless steel sinks stood against one wall at the opposite side
of the room, and two of her assistants were scrubbing down as they
prepared to process one of the new arrivals. Today Alexx needed all
the help she could get.

Alexx Woods gave a heavy sigh as she studied the body on the examining
table before her. It was a young man, approximately 25. After a
rigorous and detailed examination, she and her assistants extracted
him from his armor prison and sent it on to another lab for further
scrutiny. The victim was laid out on a table, where she conducted a
second exam.

The young man was dressed in an early Nazi military uniform, with a
khaki shirt, heavy brown pants, boots, and a tight waisted jacket. The
clothing was intact, but blood covered the collar and shirt. Other
than that, there were no holes or rips in the clothing. He did have a
wallet, with German Marks and several coins but no identification.
After 20 minutes of documenting the corpse, Alexx located fibers on
the clothing, collected, bagged and labeled them. There was some plant
matter in one of his pockets, and Alexx took a sample and sent it out
to DNA for identification with some blood samples. It was a long and
tedious ritual she had become accustomed to, but Alexx was meticulous,
paying attention to every detail she came across. Regardless of who
this boy was, his story needed to be told and even his clothing spoke
volumes to her.

Once the exam was complete, they removed and bagged the clothing. The
body itself was in dreadful condition. As far as she could determine
from her external exam, almost every bone in his body had been crushed
by an evenly distributed force as if he had been constricted to death
or held under tremendous pressure in the deepest depths of the ocean
itself. She'd never witnessed anything like it in her life.

The young man’s eyes were buldged, and showed sighs of petechial
hemorrhages, which told her he suffocated before his death. The blood
on his clothing told Alexx he had been choking out blood, perhaps
drowning in it before he died. Cutting him open would tell her for
sure. If he did asphyxiate in his own fluids, she would find foam in
his air passages.

“Dear god, you poor baby, what a horrible way to die.” She said
softly. “You really suffered, I can’t imagine what you went through. I
promise I’ll find out what did this. No one deserves to die the way
you did.”

“Doctor Woods.”

Driven from her thoughts, Alexx recognized the light cheerful New
Orleans accent of Calleigh Duquesne as entered the room holding a
large yellow folder. She crossed the room, gaze flickering over the
sheet covered forms against the wall. “Medical reports from the
hospital, and X-rays. Horatio wants you to go over them when you get a
moment.” The small blond woman gave a dazzling smile as she dropped
the folder on a tray near Alex’s lab desk.

“Sure, Honey, once I’m done puzzling Mr. John Doe here,” Alexx
replied. She didn’t mind the company. She and Calleigh were working on
the same case. It was always nice to have one of the CSIs drop by to
discuss her findings with and Calleigh was a delight to have around.
Alexx picked up tooth forceps from the rolling tray next to the
examination table. “Are they from the poor child they took in from the
sandbar yesterday?” She had not thought much of the boy after he was
taken to the hospital, only that she was mildly surprised he wasn’t in
her morgue when she returned later in the day after visiting the crime
scene.

“That’s the one.” Calleigh joined her, looking down at the body. “He’s
in critical, so is the other survivor. Horatio thinks they obtained
injuries in events leading up to the crash, but he wants you to verify
it.”

“Another survivor? Well, that’s good to hear. In all my career I’ve
seen very few survivors from plane crashes like that.” She glanced at
Calleigh, offering her a faint smile. “I’ll get to them later today,
no sweat.”

Calleigh’s hair was pulled into a tight ponytail at the back of her
head, and dressed in black slacks, a matching short-sleeved top, and a
cashmere sweater. Her bright blue eyes were narrowed with fascination
and a hint of enthusiasm.

“Were you at the hospital this morning?” Alexx asked curiously.

“I processed the boy after his surgery.” Calleigh informed her. “The
Feds are really being tight with this one. I think the Nazi uniforms got them just a little on the edge. I spent an hour jumping through hoops, before I could even look at the kid. Hospital was pretty good with leaving him well enough alone, so I was able to get what I came for. His prognosis isn’t good.” Her voice dropped, a
little sad. “Still can’t believe he’s survived this long.”

“He’s a tough boy.” Alexx said without much hesitation. She remembered
how the child had managed to swim his way to the sandbar before
collapsing. “He’s a fighter. If he's lived this long, I have faith
that child won’t ever make his way down to my morgue, not unless he’s
using his two feet.”

“We’ll see.” The young woman folded her arms, studying the body. “But
you’ve got one thing right, he’s a tough kid. He was in amazing shape,
physically -- might be what helped to keep him alive.”

“I see you’ve opened up one of our canned Nazis. Any idea of COD?”
Calleigh added after a moment of quiet.

“Canned is right on, though I have no idea what kind of safety it
would provide a soldier in the modern world. The only purpose that
armor served was holding this poor baby together.” If she hadn’t been
careful and diligent with using the body lift, the young man in
question would have oozed his way out of the armor. As it was, his
shape was horribly mangled, and downright difficult to recognize as
human at first glance. “I’d love to know what caused this kind of
damage. Its like he went for a swim in the Mariana Trench without a
bathysphere.”

Rigor had come and gone, and what had been the corpse’s mouth was easy
to open. Carefully probing it, Alexx noticed how the teeth were broken.
Carefully she removed each one. “This boy is a real mess.” She said,
she indicated to the palate and maxilla. They were bulging along the
suture lines exposing mangled flesh, oozing bits of brain matter and
bone. Blood was everywhere and foamy near the back of the throat.
“It’s broken right along the sutures and the amount of blood tells me
he was vomiting it.” She touched the man’s hair brushing it away from
his fractured face. “Honey, how in God’s name did this happen in a
rocket plane?”

“Well, the skull does break along the sutures if it is exposed to a
tremendous impact.” Calleigh said. Her gaze followed Alex as she
dropped teeth into a tray beside the examination table.

“This was more than an impact. I’m thinking pressure.” Alexx said
firmly. Most of the teeth were broken off at the roots, and several
were cracked and broken in smaller pieces. A few of them were still
inside the gums, but tilted inward toward the tongue. “By the looks of
his skull, and these teeth, I’m sure, this man was crushed by a
tremendous force. I’ll have to take X-rays and open him up once we
have him all cleaned up to verify my hypothesis. ”


Calleigh nodded, scanning the body. Alexx could tell she was just as
puzzled as she was. “Alexx… I’m seeing no external signs of injures.
No signs of struggle…” She paused, puzzled. “But he does have some
interesting scarring.” She pointed to the right arm. Even though Alex
had twisted it back into position, it still appeared horridly mangled
with irregular bumps and odd swellings in places. “Look at the skin here.”

Moving her attention from the mouth to the face, Alexx studied the
marbled flesh. It was covered with a mosaic scarring pattern. Scarring
she had only seen in medical books, Alexx Wood’s gut tightened as she
turned her gaze back to Calleigh. It couldn’t be, she thought,
smallpox had been dead since the 70s, save for a few samples in the
labs in France, Russia and the US, yet the hype about biological
terrorism kept the coroner from disregarding it as something more
practical. “Yes, from the looks of it, it’s old, from childhood. I’ve
seen similar marks before, chickenpox, shingles…. Smallpox, but that
isn’t possible. He would have to be exposed, and it would be unlikely
a modern man would survive it, we’ve got no resistance built up to it.”

“It is interesting, isn’t it?” Calleigh said. “Looks like he’s been
shot to. Is that a healed bullet wound?”

“Looks like it.” Alexx studied a small round scar on the man’s
shoulder. She saw many bullet wounds in her work, and it wasn’t
unusual for a body to come in with already healed injuries. “He’s seen
action, but this wound is old, see how it’s healed?” The man was a
soldier, so Alexx wasn’t surprised by the injury. Even now, she had
bodies of young men show up with healed war wounds. It just added new
depth to the story the corpse was telling her. She carefully eased her
hands under the body and lifted it. The corpse was so damaged, she
could feel its insides shift and roll with her motion. “I don’t see
any exit wounds in his back. It was likely lodged in a bone. I’d guess
the shoulder blade.” She eased the body down, returning her gaze to
the shoulder. If he were a terrorist, it was likely he hadn’t had his
wounds tended to, save for field medicine, and his apparent exposure
to smallpox made her suspicious. Alexx narrowed her brow, wondering if
her family was safe living in Miami. “I don’t see signs of surgery. I
wonder if he had it removed? X-rays will tell.”

“That is strange isn’t it? Soldiers today get topnotch field care. He
could be a terrorist and trying to avoid being discovered. Hell, I’ve
seen gang members who avoided medical care because they didn’t want to
draw attention.” Calleigh informed her.

Alexx could tell she was trying to make sense of the situation, but so
far, this case made little sense. She circled the body, and paused at
the end of the examination table. “Calleigh, I want you to look at
this.” She pointed to the purplish marbling of the skin around the
feet and legs. “He’s got lividity in his feet and lower legs, like he
stayed in an upright position after death for a significant amount of
time.” She wrinkled her brow. “The only thing I can think of was he
was strapped in a standing position. What do you think?”

“Could be.” Calleigh studied the feet and brushed a long lock of hair
from her eyes. “Were there any strap marks on the armor?”


“Didn’t notice, I sent it to Trace. They should find something.” Alexx
sighed, straightening. She looked around, and watched two more gurneys
being brought in. She would need help on this one. The woman shook her
head. The more she stood around the less work she got done. “Dear god,
I swear there was an entire platoon on that rocket. I have a lab
filled with bodies and my work cut out for me…”

Calleigh smiled eyeing the new bodies. “You certainly do. Well, I have
to get back to work. Good luck, Alexx.” While she spoke, she turned to
leave. “Let me know if you find a bullet. I can test it at the lab,
might be able to help us narrow down the weapon that shot him and
where he was stationed. Not many Nazis exist in the world, so it
should be easy to trace.”

Alexx nodded, focusing on the body in front of her. Already she had
the feeling more would be arriving as the day progressed. She gave a
tired shake of the head. If she was going to give every corpse the
individual attention they deserved; she needed to get moving. Even if
they were from a potential Nazi terrorist organization, she had to
find out what killed them, because in the long run, the entire case
could be exposing a threat to national security.

*&*&*&

Calleigh stood in a small brightly lit room, bags of sealed evidence
stretched out across the table, and color photos tacked to the wall
behind her. The pictures varied, some of were the beach, and the
scattered suits of armor, others of the ocean and bits of debris
floating over it. Several pictures were of the two survivors; Alex’s
boy laying on the beach, and the blond youth floating in the water on
some planks. Other pictures were of the injuries both boys obtained
from the crash.

The bags were filled with the boys' belongings -- everything from
clothing to objects had been collected by Natalia the day before, and
Calleigh had been assigned to go over the material with the help of
Ryan. As usual, despite all the delays she encountered, Calleigh
arrived early that morning and after a fresh cup of coffee, the bullet
girl was cheerfully going over each object with a fine-tooth comb.

With gloved fingers, Calleigh removed a wallet from its bag, and
carefully opened it. It’s contents were still damp and she could see
several bills shoved in the inside pocket. There was also a piece of
paper, and a business card. She found change shoved in a zippered
section, and old black and white photos in another pocket.


With tweezers, she removed the damp bills and laid them out on the
table, studying each one carefully. They were green bills with German
written over their face. Each bill was a different date, all of them
before 1924. Even the coins were outdated. Calleigh’s brow rose,
curiosity filling her bright eyes. She checked Natalia’s notes on the
wallet and returned her attention back to the bills.

“I thought Natalia was going over the bags from the hospital.” Ryan
entered the room, joining Calleigh at the table. He snapped on a set
of gloves, gaze shifting toward the bags of evidence.

“Horatio assigned me to it, he needs her in the lab.” Calleigh replied
stepping back. “Looks like these are authentic.” She gestured to the
bills. “I’ll have to get them under the microscope and analyze the
ink, but damn, why on earth would he have outdated German Marks in his
pocket?”

“They sell them on E bay. Unlike back then, these are worth quite a
bit now.” Ryan informed her studying the money. “According to Delko,
several of the bodies they pulled up had German Marks on them.”

Extracting the photo, Calleigh held it up to the light. The edges were
worn, and there was a crease in the center across one of the faces. In
it were several men, standing in the line on a fairground, with what
looked like an old battered convertible ford model T parked to the
side. The picture wasn’t very clear, and the faces were blurred, but
Calleigh had a good eye. One face stood out -- it was the blond in the
hospital. He was in the front kneeling; one knee was up with his arm
draped over it. His face was solemn. The notation on the back of the
picture was washed out, but she recognized it as a date. July 16th,
1923. “Maybe they come from one of those historical reenactment
communities that try to live in the past.” She offered, glancing at
Ryan. The photo, the money, the clothes, everything pointed to the
early 20th century. Both survivors appeared to cling to the past. “Mr.
Elric is in this one. We could do a search for communities.”

“Sure, I’ll get on it after we’re done here.” Ryan came to her side
and glanced down at the photo. “That’s a rocket.” He pointed to a set
of boxes in the center of the group, and a pointed cylinder set up in
front of it. “Interesting. We should send this to Tyler and see if he
can enhance this and identify any of the other people.”

“I would like to know what is says on the back.” Calleigh said,
slipping the business card from the pocket. It was folded, with
smeared ink across the back. Huskisson, Japan, Thule Society. She
flipped the card over and blinked. “Why this is for a Fritz Lang,
movie producer…”

“You think our guy is an actor?” Ryan sounded doubtful. He placed the
photo down to dry and picked up another bag. He broke the seal, and
removed the purse. “I’ll get the kid's things.”

Calleigh placed the card on the table studying it closely. She shook
her head. “I can’t say. There are so many things he could be. The
problem with this evidence is one just can’t point a finger at any one
thing. But I know of only one Fritz Lang, and he’s not a modern
filmmaker. In fact, his most famous film, Metropolis, was filmed in
the late 1920s. And look at this. The name of his Babeleberg studio.”

“The twenties again.” Ryan rubbed his chin, thinking. He seemed to be
just as puzzled as she was. “What about what’s written on the back?”

“Huskisson, we can always look him up. As for the Thule society, I’m
not sure. It has me a little concerned. Could they be a terrorist
organization? I’ll give Horatio a call.” Calleigh left the card on the
table. She would send it and the money to analysis so they could
determine what they were made from. “So what do you have?”

“A purse.” Ryan informed. “Looks like it’s filled with gold coins.” He
extracted a coin and held it up to the light. The coin flashed, and
Calleigh caught eye of a rearing griffon relief etched over its
surface. “Damn, language on it looks like German,” He indicated the
writing around the coin's edges. “But it doesn’t quite match up with
what I know is German and I don’t recall any German coins having this
griffon motif. Date here has it for 1915. Do you think it is some kind
of rare collector's coin?”

“It’s possible. You can check the database later.” At this point,
she didn’t want to confuse herself with theories before she organized
her evidence. Evidence was like a puzzle. It fit all together, and
pictured a story of events leading up to a crime or accident, and
those involved. For now, it was confusing, and didn’t make sense,
pointing to historical items, yet it was inconsistent with the Nazi
bodies. Calleigh suspected the evidence could take a turn toward
something entirely different once things were completely studied.

Once all the items were removed from the wallet, Calleigh laid them
out on the table. Later she’d bag them and take them to various labs
to analyze but for now, her attention shifted to the gun. “Ooo, a
Mauser, and in good condition.” She said lifting the weapon from its
bag, and studying it carefully. She felt a rise of excitement. Guns
were her specialty and this one was very well maintained and not a
replica. .

At her side, Ryan flipped though one of the brown leather-bound
notebooks, brow furrowed. Its pages were plain, with a dark ink, that
seemed to splatter and occasionally skip. From what Calleigh could
see, the writing was neat and very readable. It varied with thickness,
telling her it was written with a calligraphy nib. “Damn, I’d swear
this is written in German, but like the coin, it’s not quite what I
know.” He glanced at her, tilting the book so she could see better.
The book was full of notes, from top to bottom with broad looping
cursive lines that seemed to flow over the page with patient confidence.

She was only vaguely familiar with German, and she did recognize
certain words. “Looks similar enough to translate properly.” She said.
“Have Tyler run a program.”

“With my luck it will come out sounding like Babelfish.” Ryan shrugged
lowering the book. He flipped it open, page by page, wrinkling his
brow as he went, he finally settled at the beginning, and the name
scrawled on the inside of the leather cover. “Alphonse Elric.”

“That’s the name Edward used for his brother.” Calleigh observed.

“Has Natalia completed her DNA analysis?” Ryan asked pulling a picture
from the book.

“Not yet. Hospital still has him listed as John Doe, but with this
evidence it’s likely they are brothers.” Both young men looked similar
right down to the way they had their hair and toned build. She studied
the gun in her hand, noting it was a C-96, 9mm semiautomatic pistol.
It had a 140mm barrel, and its magazine housed 10 rounds, 5 of which
were spent. After documenting and photographing the magazine, she
removed the bullets and sealed them in a bag to be taken to her lab.
She turned the weapon in her hand, studying the barrel, the clip, the
frame, the handle and trigger. It was a lovely weapon, its barrel and
body were gold plated, with etchings carved in the surface, and its
handle was solid wood over steel. It was elegant, though a bit clumsy
with its rectangular magazine in front of the trigger.

The serial number was located on the barrel breech, 399265. She
blinked, eyeing the weapon suspiciously. The gun itself was in mint
condition, but the serial number said it was an authentic antique.
“This gun’s been beautifully maintained.” She said, glancing at Ryan.
“Our boy took good care of it.”


“Maybe he’s OCD?” Ryan smirked.

Calleigh liked Ryan. He had a good sense of humor, and had no problem
poking fun of himself. His obsessive-compulsive tendencies were
legendary when it came to keeping his gun maintained. “Takes one to
know one?”

“You tell me.” Ryan removed the five photos. “Hand painted,” he said,
laying them out on the table. One photo was of two blond boys holding
fishing poles and two fish. They appeared in another, but considerably
younger, with a woman with dark hair, and a third with the same woman
and a man with a beard and long blond hair. A golden haired girl and
dark haired woman appeared in the other photos.

“I think we’ve got our survivors.”

“That’s strange.” Glancing down at the pictures, Calleigh wrinkled her
brow. “The boys in these pictures are very close in age. I don’t think
our boys are. Well, we won’t know for certain until Alexx goes over
their x-rays. Still, they’re dressed rather ambiguously, not modern,
but not vintage. Not like Edward was.” She gestured to the clothing.
“We should go though Edward’s things next. Natalia already covered the
younger boy’s clothing this morning. She took samples of cloth,
pollen, and blood for DNA. The kid had sand in his coat pockets, so
she sent that to Trace to be examined.”

“I read her report. I bet she wasn’t happy to be bumped to DNA.” Ryan
said with a hint of sympathy in his voice. “Or so she told me this
morning. Do you think the adults in the photos are our kids' parents?”

Ryan was very good with sticking to the case at hand, but Calleigh
could tell he was trying to avoid the topic of Natalia. “It’s
possible,” She looked at the blond man and a brown haired woman
pictured with a toddler and infant. “The kids share features with this
couple.”

“Natalia thought they might be family.” Ryan said. Apparently he had
discussed her report when he saw her that morning. Typical of him,
Ryan was thorough to the point of anal-retentive.

“Why Ryan, are you getting soft? I mean you’re considering Natalia’s
theories, and you’re speaking civilly about her. I’m very proud of
you. I thought you were the one who wanted Natalia in the lab?”
Calleigh said coolly. Even though she felt there were advantages to
having Natalia in the lab, she wished the best for the woman and if
she was willing to take the pay cut to work as a CSI, than Calleigh
suspected the woman was sincere about her investigative calling.

“She lets her feelings get in the way.” He shrugged, handling the bag
of toys found in the boy’s pocket. “And, to be honest, it clouds her
judgment. But she’s been professional with this case, so I’m giving
her some slack.” He was getting soft on her. Even his voice picked up
a gentle note when saying her name. He turned back to the bag of toys,
opening it and studying its contents before spreading them out on the
table. “Why am I not surprised this kid wasn’t carrying a gameboy? Who
plays marbles anymore?”

“Someone who was raised thinking the world was a more simple place.”
Calleigh replied. She was starting to get an image of their two
survivors. The pictures told her they were loved, and had a relatively
secure childhood. Their bodies told her they were in shape, like well
toned machines. Both of them had calluses, and heavy scarring, that
told her they had been on their own, surviving, for some time. Perhaps
something happened to take away that security. Did their parents pass
away? Edward’s prosthetics told her something traumatic had happened,
perhaps the traumatic event that took their parents? Yet the toys told
her the youngest one was still very much a child at heart, which told
her both brothers were close and the oldest was likely acting as
support and parent for the other, allowing him to stay a child despite
the circumstances. “I’m getting the impression, both these kids were
raised by someone who kept them in the past.” It was an interesting
deduction and the evidence was consistent with it. “Maybe some kind of
preWWII commune where they speak the German equivalent of Esperanto.”

“Well you know, after WW2, there were many people who believed Hitler
escaped to Argentina, and was trying to start a new Nazi party by
raising children in it at an early age. There were several rumors, in
fact.” Ryan proposed. “Given that many of the rumors were fear-based,
and a Soviet propaganda project designed by Stalin to confuse and
weaken the Allies, I give very little credit that it was Hitler
directly involved; but I can’t easily ignore the fact that rumors
sometimes have some truth to them and that it is very possible there
is some militant Nazi organization out there. South America is a large
continent, it is very easy for people to hide and their rocket did
come in from a Southeast vector.”

It wasn’t a bad theory and likely not the last. Calleigh considered
it. Perhaps their parents were involved with the Nazi organization and
fled it. Perhaps that was how they died? But then how did Edward, who
obviously existed mentally in the past, get his advanced prosthetics?
She glanced to the photo of the boys, noting their eyes were golden,
not blue. Edward’s clothing and money were from the twenties, not the
mid forties, and both boys were dressed in civilian garb, unlike the
armored soldiers in Alexx’s morgue. They just didn’t seem to fit the
Nazi mold. “I’m not saying some of it isn’t possible -- at this point,
I’m open to unusual theories, but our boys don’t fit it. Now, our Nazi
friends, they might.” She lifted the gun in her hand and touched the
barrel. “Now this gun, it’s personalized, look at the carving in the
gun barrel.” She pointed to the elegant vine and leaf motif swirling
over the barrel and body of the gun. “Whoever owned this gun had
money.” She indicated to the clothing in the bag. “Edward’s suit, it’s
a derby suit, common among lower and middle class people. There is no
way he could afford this weapon. It was either a gift, or stolen. And
it is definitely not military issue.” She paused, trying to gather her
thoughts. “Fritz Lang was Jewish too. Alright, he did some Nazi
promotional films, but he fled Germany when things got bad.”

“Which brings us back to the fact that Lang is dead, and why on Earth
would two apparently 21th century teens be doing with his card,
apparently raised isolated from the rest of the world, riding a
rocket loaded with Nazis?” Ryan ran a hand through his long brown
bangs and pulled at the hair with frustration. He inhaled, dumped the
marbles out in a tray, and studied each of them carefully. “Glass and
clay. Who makes clay marbles anymore?”

“They made them at the turn of the century.” Calleigh remarked. She
turned it back over in her hands and pulled back the hammer. There was
red smeared in the spring joint. She gave a tiny smile, reached for a
Q tip and dipped it into a Leuko Crystal Violet solution. Carefully
she swabbed the springs and crack, the Q tip turned pink. “Now, isn’t
that peachy, we’ve got pink. Someone was kind enough to bleed on our
gun, making our mystery even more convoluted.”


“I don’t think any of our bodies have gun shot injuries, though I
understand they’re finding an arsenal of weapons in the wreck.” Ryan
informed her. He had placed the top and marbles away and was now going
over Edward’s clothing. “And our friend’s vest and slacks have spatter
on them. It’s washed somewhat by the salt water, but we’ve got
traces. Looks like Edward wasn’t a hostage. Maybe he was well, trying
to stop them.” He looked over to Calleigh, brow furrowed. “We’ve got a
rocket, heading off to the Miami mainland, with a small platoon of
armored Nazis with lots of weapons and two kids, one of them with a
gun that doesn’t match the weapons the Nazis are using.” He folded
his arms, rather smug.

“That seems to fit.” Calleigh said, eyeing the clothing. “But you’re
forgetting he’s got prosthetics, and he’s damned small, not that big
things don’t come in little packages, what in God’s name does a kid,
with one gun think he can do against a rocket load of Nazis?”

“He had his brother too, and Alexx says he’s got defensive wounds as
well as bruises on his knuckles and hands. He was fighting as well.”
Ryan added. “I didn’t say our friends were sane. Just heroic.”

“Revenge for the death of their parents?” She was stretching. Calleigh
felt a wash of foolishness. This entire case required them to stretch
for theories and regardless of how hard she tried, any practical
down-to-earth ideas didn’t seem to fit the evidence. “Why is this
sounding like a grade B film?”

Ryan shrugged. “Evidence, we’re following the evidence.” He grabbed a
magnifying glass and scanned down the clothing. “I’ve got some powder,
looking like dust either from cement, or some kind of stone used in
building materials.” He gestured to a folder sitting at the corner of
the table. “Natalia notes there is dust on the younger boy's clothing
too.”

Removing the boy’s clothing from its sealed bag, Calleigh laid out the
black slacks and matching shirt on the table next to the older boy’s
clothing. The red jacket was next. Like the clothing, it was shredded,
and covered with blood. But in the pockets, and creases of the slacks
was a scattered glinting dust ground into the fibers. There were also
patches of clothing missing, where Natalia took samples. Taking
another magnifying glass, she studied each inch of the cloth, and
spied a blond hair caught in seem of the button of the black shirt.
“Why, I think Natalia missed something.” Carefully she removed the
hair. It was pale with a fleshy tag at the end. “Well, it’s paler than
Ed’s hair.” She said, holding it up to the light. “Maybe the person he
was fighting with?”

“Could be.” Ryan peered at the hair, gaze narrowed. “Damn, I don’t see
a tag. Do you think we have another victim?”

“Can’t tell. It was snagged under the button, likely when they
tussled, but I don’t know if he got in this fight before or during the
rocket flight.” She sealed the hair in a bag. “Anything on your end?”

“Coat fabric looks brand new, the suit looks well used, and we’ve got
blood stains, tears and burns on both. No wait, the sleeve of his
shirt looks like it’s been cut but something sharp.”

“Could have been shrapnel.” Calleigh picked up a bag containing a red
stone, removed the stone, and held it up to the light. “Now, what is
this? A gemstone of some kind? A garnet? Ruby? Damned big for a
precious stone. It has a nice luster…” She tilted the stone in her
fingers watching the prismatic light reflect off the material. “I’m
sending this to Aaron, see if he can come up with something.”


“If that is a gemstone, it means our kids are toting around a fortune.
Might explain why he was fighting someone. He could have stolen it.
South America does have several mines.”

But that theory didn’t settle well with her. It was tucked into the
boy’s pocket with the marbles and top, not hidden in a purse. It had
no value to the child, if it did, he would have hidden it on his
person or put it in his purse. Instead it was placed with his toys as
if he picked it up, like a rock on the beach, likely because it was
pretty or a curiosity. “You’re thinking too much like a grown up,
Ryan. I used to collect rocks all the time when I was a kid. I’d just
pick them up and shove them into my pockets. Remember, if he was
raised isolated, he probably doesn’t care about what it is, or its
value. It’s a cool rock.”

“Rock collection, eh?” Ryan continued to scrutinize the suit. “I never
collected rocks.”

“I had pet rocks.” She couldn’t help but smile, when she saw him shack
his head. “Used to paint them up and keep them on my dresser with my
nick-knack ballerinas and unicorns.” Placing the stone in a tray in
the corner, she stepped back from the table and studied the objects.

Shaking his head, Ryan repressed his smile and reached down and lifted
the other notebook and held it up. He briefly flipped thought it.
“This is Edward's. His name is in the margin. It's written in the
identical language as the other. His handwriting is rushed, and hard
to read, but he had a ton of drawings in it. Circles with designs and
astrological symbols in them.”

“They could be a part of some cult.” She looked at the illustrations,
and they reminded her of the hex symbols she had seen on barns in the
Amish country. “These look like wards against evil spirits or something…”

Ryan didn’t look convinced by her observations. He sighed. “No, the
Amish don’t use astrology. It looks more new age.”

“All right, book aside, what do we have here?” Gesturing to the
table, Calleigh glanced to Ryan.

There was a moment of hesitation, before Ryan even spoke. “About as
much as we did when we came into this room. Two kids, who lived like
they did in the turn of the century. They were isolated, knew how to
fight or thought they did, they have or had parents and were likely on
their own for some time. The eldest had an accident that took away his
right arm and left leg, maybe when their parents died. Both of them
speak German or a variant of it. The eldest worked with rockets or
with people who used them, and liked Fritz Lang movies… The youngest
liked cucumber and cheese sandwiches, played with marbles, tops and
collected coins and rocks...” He pointed to the two pictures at the
table. “These two people must be friends, or relatives, maybe people
who helped them out when growing up. The woman with the dreadlocks
looks she means serious business… A teacher, or a aunt who gave
neither of them any guff. Their names are Alphonse and Edward Elric,
Al kept a diary of some sort, is the coddled younger brother, which is
why he still has toys in his pockets. He’s still being a protected
child. They’re not working with the Nazis, they were trying to stop
them, with a gun, and good old fashioned fisticuffs…”

“Sound plausible. I know we are leaving things out.” She gestured to
the one notebook. “But we might just have to talk to Mr. Elric about
that if he survives.”

“Sure.” Ryan picked up his magnifying glass and leaned back over the
derby suit. “I’m sure he’ll give us some interesting stories. One
thing for certain thought. If our theory's right, and they did set out
to kill the Nazis, I’d like to know how they managed it, because we
have 26 corpses in the morgue, and there is no way two small orphans
could crush the life out of one man, let alone 26.”

“That’s because they didn’t Ryan. I think those men died long before
our boys even attempted to take control over the rocket. Something
else killed them. What I’m not sure. But I do know one thing, it’s our
job to find out, and make sure it won’t happen again.”

*&*&*

The boy’s body looked so tiny lying in that large bed surrounded by
life support.

Alexx Woods sighed, asking herself once more why she was there. She
had stopped by the hospital to pick up MRIs the hospital
took of both boys, so she could conduct a further examination of both
children’s injuries, present and past, so she could compile a history
of their health. The X rays she'd examined already lead her to many
conclusions, but MRIs would help clarify them.

But instead of going to the imaging department, she found herself
making her way to the ICU, convincing herself she was going to talk to
Doctor Sullivan, the physician in charge of both the boys. A second
opinion never hurt, nor did dropping in on the little John Doe to see
how he was faring.

Perhaps she could find something the others missed.

She briefly talked to the nurse monitoring the child, informing her
she was there and wanted to speak to Sullivan, than quietly made her
way to the boy's room and looked in.

He was so small, bound up in several casts with his leg elevated over
the bed in traction by a swing and pulley. His head was wrapped, with
long dark gold bangs spilling over the crisp white bandages and into
his closed eyes. IV bag drips dangled behind his bed, and tubes were
firmly wrapped into his bandaged arm. One arm was draped over his
chest in a cast that almost met his shoulder. Several blankets
covered his body, making him look frail and vulnerable. She noticed the crossed steel external fixation apparatus fastened to his hips poking
under the sheets.

A heart monitor blipped steadily in rhythm with his soft breathing.
Breathing he was doing on his own.

Alexx entered the room, crossing over to the child’s side to get a
better look at his face. He was pale, with flushed cheeks. The brows
were furrowed, and his eyelids twitched. Terror crossed his young face
as he stirred momentarily but did not waken. It looked as if he was
dreaming. “Poor thing, you must have had it rough.” She cooed, hand
straying to his hair. She brushed the stringy bangs from his brow. He
was warm, but his face softened and his vitals seemed to steady at the
tone of her voice. Alexx Woods was sure the child could hear her.
“Well, you can hear me, can’t you? Well then, I want you to listen
Alphonse.” She said the name, recalling how Calleigh had jotted down
his possible name on the report following the X-rays. In her heart,
Alexx was quite certain that was who the child was. “I saw your
X-Rays; you really were a scrapper, weren’t you? I’d never have
guessed, looking at your angelic face.” She smiled faintly. Her son
was quite the scrapper. It was the nature of young boys. But this
child had suffered more than his share of breaks and bruises. In fact,
she suspected both boys were either abused physically in the past or
at one point fighting for their own survival.

The electronic thermometer blipped a steady 102. Laying in all that
rocket fuel and bacteria filled water had infected his open wounds,
giving him a fever. “I’m here to ask you a favor, I want you to fight.
You’re one patient I don’t want to see in my morgue. You hear? I
understand you might have a brother around. He’ll need you. He’s a
very sick young man. He needs to know you’ll be around, just like you
need to know he’s around.”

“Doctor Woods?” A soft English accent called from the doorway.
Following the voice, Alexx focused on a tall man, with a head of short
curly hair graying at the temples, wearing a dark blue pinstriped suit
with a white smock. He carried a large envelope under his arm. “I
understand you are interested in both boys' MRIs?”

Turning from Alphonse, Alexx met Doctor Sullivan’s words with a smile
and an extended hand. “Why yes, you must be Doctor Sullivan. It’s a
pleasure to meet you.”

Taking her hand Doctor Sullivan gave the ME a firm handshake. “The
pleasure is mine actually. I have heard a great deal about you and
your department, Doctor Woods.”

Not all of it had to be good, Alexx thought. She had the reputation of
not playing with hospital politics and sticking to the honest truth
when it came to her work. Alexx Woods worked for her patients and
listened closely to the stories they told. And sometimes those stories
told her things the hospital staff didn’t want to know. Still, she
felt herself blush some, recognizing his voice was filled with
admiration. “I just do what I can, doctor, I sure you understand, and
we’re all a team at Miami Dade.” She explained modestly. It was all
Horatio really, he was the glue that kept them all together, and
played the politics end of the job.

“So I hear.” Sullivan continued to sound congenial. He handed her the
folder, gaze shifting to the boy. “Well, I hope those help, but I’m
curious, what can these MRIs do in your investigation?”

“Normally I’d run my own catscans at the morgue, for a more thorough
examination of the bodies to determine COD or even past medical
history and since our case is a bit unusual, we’re trying to compile a
history for our two young friends here, since they can’t and may never
tell us themselves.” Alexx explained. She glanced at Alphonse
recalling his X-rays and how badly mangled his pelvis and hip were as
well as the broken ribs and bruises on his torso. Something had fallen
on him, or used him to break their fall. Injuries told a story. “Has
social services contacted you yet?”

Surprised by her question, Doctor Sullivan raised a brow. “Yes, they
have. Both boys are wards of the state, their medical care is covered,
and so far, they’re both hanging on. It’s still too early to tell
anything yet. I trust you’ve seen my report.”

She nodded. She had just been curious as to whom was now tending to
the children’s medical needs. If either of them survived they were
both in need of extensive hospitalization, and Alphonse, several
reconstructive surgeries so he could walk. “Well, I trust they’ll do
what is necessary.” Alexx tucked the envelope under her arm. “Thank
you Doctor Sullivan. By the way, when you were checking them over, you
didn’t see any pock scars?”

“Like chickenpox?” Sullivan asked curious. He rubbed his chin while
considering the question. “The older boy was covered with scars, I
can’t be sure if any of them were specifically pock marks. But I’ll
have my people do a more extensive exam once they’re both in stable
condition.”

That was good enough for her. Alexx gave a short nod and extended her
hand to her colleague. “Well, thank you very much, doctor. That should
do for now.”

The man before her offered a congenial smile and returned her
handshake before Alexx left him. He acted cooperative enough. The part
of her that worried for the youngster was relieved. Alphonse was in
good hands.

Stepping out of the room, Alexx started down the hall, when a familiar
face caught her attention.

Horatio Caine stood in front of the ICU reception desk, speaking
softly to the nurse. The dark haired woman was nodding and pointing
toward the ICU Alexx had just left. The pathologist paused as Caine
recognized her. Placing his dark sun glasses in the breast pocket of
his dark suit jacket, the red haired man crossed the narrow hall way
to her side. “Alexx, I didn’t expect to see you here.” He said, sharp
blue eyes pleasantly surprised.

Dropping her free hand to the envelope Alexx smiled. “I was on my way
home, and thought I would stop by and pick up these MRIs and get a
head start for tomorrow.”

Glancing toward the ICU Alexx had just left, Caine looked a little
skeptical. “You could easily have done that by going to imaging, Alexx.”

“Well I wanted to talk with Doctor Sullivan as well.” The doctor
continued. “It was easier to meet here, and I wanted to see how Al was
doing.”


“Alexx, I understand we haven’t determined that information yet.”
Caine’s voice was gentle, not scolding, and curiosity flickered in his
gaze. He slipped his hands on his hips, attention falling across the
hall and the staff moving about.

A nurse wheeled a cart to one of the rooms, and vanished inside.

“Educated guess on my part. He is the only child we recovered, and I
understand that other boy said he had a younger brother.” Alexx told
him, confident. “And to be honest, it’s comforting to a patient to
hear their name, and that poor boy needs comforting.” She felt a hint
of guilt fill her voice. Going to the room, and talking to Al was
against procedure. It implied she was personally involved. But she
wasn’t, not really, she just wanted the boy to know there was someone
out there who had faith in him. Just like she’d want someone to do if
Bryan was in the same situation.

“Alright Alexx, this is what I want you to do, I know you found the
boy, I suspect you feel a little guilty about him being neglected by
the paramedics, but I want you to be aware, personal involvement in a
case is dangerous. Do you understand? I appreciate you worrying about
the boy. He’s in good hands. I’ll make sure of that.”

Yes, she did feel obligated to come. As a medical professional it
bothered her deeply that the boy was misdiagnosed. It could have cost
him his life. Alexx wrapped her arms about her waist, and looked down
at the floor, weighing her worry and guilt. Horatio wasn’t angry with
her, in fact, if he had found the boy, he would have done the same,
but he was concerned about their department. They had to be cautious.
They were being watched carefully by the feds, and didn’t want to draw
negative attention. “I know you will, Horatio. I just can’t stand the
thought he might die because of someone’s incompetence in the
coastguard. Damn it, if they just took a little time with him, they
would have found his pulse. It’s the second time I’ve seen this, and
he’s only a baby really…”

“Your son is about 13 isn’t he?” Horatio asked making her wince.

“Yes he is.” Her boy was waiting for her to come home. They’d do
homework when she got there, and have some dinner. After dinner, she
and her husband would take both children and watch a video before bed.
Alexx Wood went out of her way to connect with her family when she had
the time because it wasn’t unusual for her job to take her away from
them for long hours. “He’s going to be in high school next year. Lord,
how time flies, they don’t stay young long enough.”

Caine nodded, understanding. Alexx knew Ray Jr, his nephew was a
teenager now. “I know it is hard to take this just as a job when young
people are involved. You wonder about their families, and whether they
have closure. And it is our jobs to give them that closure.” Caine
said. “I know looking at this boy makes you think of your own family,
and it’s because of your heart I have you on our team, Alexx. But we
need to keep professional here. Ok?”


“Understood.” Alexx Woods felt a wash of relief and she considered his
words. She felt her desire to return home to her family grow stronger.
She wanted to do something special with them, something Bryan would
like. Maybe they’d order pizza. It was a Friday. She and Todd could
take Janie and Bryan to the pier to watch the sunset and do a little
fishing. “And thank you, Horatio. I should get home.”

“You do that, Alexx.” Horatio’s hands dropped to his side as he turned
his attention to the ICU. Doctor Sullivan exited the ICU and walked
over to the monitoring desk, where he started to speak with nurse.
“I’ll take care of things here.”
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