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Owe You One

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It was bad enough when Nick woke up blindfolded and chained to a wall somewhere, but it got worse when he felt the buzz. Up 'til that moment he'd figured the guy he'd gone home with last night just had a dungeon fetish-- he was carrying it a little far, right, but Nick could afford to wait it out and see-- but with the presence of another Immortal thrown into the mix, he wasn't so sure anymore.

"Who's there?" Nick asked. "What do you want?"

There was an "oof" and the sound of chains rattling, and the buzz stayed put while the door slammed shut.

After a few seconds, the new guy sighed. "Well, this is awkward." He didn't sound too worried. "All tied up together and I don't even know your name. You're...?"

"Nick," Nick growled. "And you?"

"Adam. I'd say it's good to meet you, but under the circumstances..."

"Save the small talk, all right?" Nick said. "Can you get us out of here?"

"Why is that my job?" Now Adam just sounded amused. "You've been here longer than I have. Shouldn't you have figured something out by now?"

"I take it that's a no."

"Oh, I can get me out of here just fine. You, though..."

"Me, what?"

Adam was quiet for a couple of seconds; Nick heard more chain-rattling, followed by a sigh of relief. "There we go. Old-fashioned type. Just as well; I could open these in my sleep."

"Great. I'm very impressed with whatever you just did, but how about undoing mine next?"

The blindfold came loose with a tug, and Nick squinted up at an unassuming Brit, maybe thirtysomething plus however many Immortal years, with one of the biggest noses he'd ever seen. Adam. Right. Nick jiggled his chains, glanced up at them. They were solid, heavy manacles, complete with padlock. He wasn't going anywhere on his own.

"Please?" he tried.

"We've got three problems, Nick. One: I don't know you. Two: two are harder to sneak out than one. And three: Immortals your age are notorious headhunters."

"How do you know how old I am?"

"The impatience is a dead giveaway. Emphasis on dead if we stand around chatting much longer."

"So get me out of here. I'll owe you one."

"Don't think I won't collect on that."

Nick rolled his eyes. "Fine. Just get me out of here, okay?"

Within a couple of minutes, Adam had Nick's hands freed and was working on the door. Nick barely had time to rub at his wrists before Adam had the door open. "Not much of a cell. God, amateurs these days..."

"Yeah, well, he still got us."

"Not for long. Less talk, more sneaking. Come on."

Once upstairs, Nick could vaguely recognize the house. Definitely the place he'd gone last night, the big house out in the country. He made a mental note to call the cops as soon as he got near a phone again-- his cell, of course, was history-- and hoped this was the first time the older guy from the bar had tried something like this. He had a sick feeling it wasn't, though.

Adam took off at a brisk walk, and Nick followed, figuring two were better than one if there was trouble coming. "Any idea what that was about?"

"Not particularly. How did you end up in there?"

Nick grimaced. "I went home with a guy I met in a bar. Woke up chained to the wall. You?"

"Same thing, minus the falling-asleep bit. Same guy, I assume. Six-two, dark hair going grey at the temples..."

" eyes, great ass," Nick filled in. "That's the one. I hope he doesn't do this a lot."

"Well, thank you for not going after him just yet. I would like to actually get out of here before you send the police back to the house."

"You and me both." Except, of course, that it hadn't been a "you and me both" sort of statement. "Before I send the police, not before we send them. Not a fan of cops?"

"Not typically, but you seem all right so far."

Adam was quick; Nick had to give him that. "Ex-cop," he said, grinning. "And like I said back there, if you ever need anything..."

"I'll find you. Trust me." Adam grinned back, one eyebrow raised. "I have every intention of collecting on that."

"I don't doubt it for a minute."

Between the two of them, they made it back to civilization without too many wrong turns. The first gas station they ran into gave them both the means to call cabs, and Nick took a seat outside on the curb to wait. Adam joined him after a few minutes, six-pack of beer in hand. He offered one to Nick, who shook his head.

"Suit yourself. I find a good microbrew is just the thing after random kidnappings."

Nick laughed. "You get into that kind of trouble a lot, huh?"

"If you live long enough, you get into all sorts of trouble. Beer is a great remedy for most of them."

As words of wisdom go, they weren't terribly profound, but Nick couldn't argue with the sentiment. "About that guy--"

"Yes, about him. I assumed you were planning to get the police involved, but maybe you should reconsider that. If he was after Immortals in particular, it could make an ugly splash in newsprint somewhere."

"Got any better ideas?"

"I can make a few calls. Maybe kick this one over to the kind of Immortal who enjoys ferreting out a good mystery."

"Put me in touch with whoever it is, if you do end up doing that," Nick says. "I'd like to find out what was going on in there."

"You'd owe me again for that," Adam pointed out, arching an eyebrow. "Shouldn't you quit while you're ahead?"

The cabs pulled up, and Nick stood up. "I'll take my chances."

"It's not working out badly for you so far. Take care."

"You, too."