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...Chester B. Pt. 2

Outside in the shadows,  he was watching.  He didn't like the new guy she was dating.  Of course,  he didn't like any of the guys she dated.  She was out of control.  She had to be taught a lesson.  He was the only one for her.  He had to convince her that this was true.  But first,  he had to get rid of  Chet Kelly.

      The next day,  while Chet was back at work,  Michelle was cleaning her apartment  when HE showed up.
    "Hello Shelly,  it's been what,  two,  three months."  Michelle whirled around.  There was only one person that called her Shelly and she hoped to God it wasn't him.  It was.  
    "W-What are you doing here?  Look,  I told you that it was over."  While she was saying this she was backing away.  One of the reasons that she broke up with Chris was because he was so possessive,  and he was violent.  Chris threw a chair out of the way as he came toward her.  This really made her scared.
     "Don't worry sugar,  I'm not going to kill you.  Maybe I'll just hurt you a little."
Michelle picked up a poker from the fireplace and held it up in a threatening manner.
    "Oh no,  officer,  she threatened me with a poker,  so I had to deck her."  She lowered the poker as she realized that this was true.
     "Besides,  there's something I want you to do for me."  He was right in her face now.  She was terrified.
    "I want you to get rid of your new boyfriend."  To him it was a very simple request - one that she should have no problem complying with.
    "You're joking aren't you?  Chet is the best thing that's ever happened to me.  Why would I want to get rid of him?"  The answer almost roared itself in her ears.  Chris wanted her back.
     "I want you to break up with that guy as soon as possible or he might have a very serious accident."  Although Michelle knew that Chris had a menacing spirit,  she wasn't quite sure that he could pull this accident off - not enough brains.
    "I'm not going back to you and if you try to hurt Chet,  I'll go to the police.  Now,  get out of my apartment."  She had the phone in her hand now and could easily call the police.  But,  it wasn't necessary.
    "Alright,  but I want you to remember that I did warn you, Shelly"  With that,  he left.  
    The klaxons sounded and engine fifty-one as well as squad fifty-one were called to a structure fire.  It sounded very routine.  Chet had gotten better at thinking about Michelle and doing his job at the same time.  There was also something else he was thinking about in reference to Michelle.  He was just working on the fine tuning.
    When they arrived at the fire they saw that the structure was almost completely engulfed.  Chet and the others got out the hoses and went to work the fire.  Johnny and Roy set about finding out if everyone had gotten out safely.  Chet and Marco were working on a particular hot spot,  when the structure started to collapse.  Chet's last thought was of Michelle before he blacked out.
    "Johnny,  Roy get in there.  Chet and Marco are in trouble!"  Captain Stanley called out.  Johnny and Roy looked to the direction that the Cap was pointing to.  It didn't look good.  Cap had also called for another line to be brought in so that Johnny and Roy could actually get to Chet and Marco.
    When they were finally pulled out,  Johnny and Roy set up everything and started checking them out.  Marco,  who was in the back got away with a few scratches and bruises.  Chet,  on the other hand, had suffered the full impact of the ceiling.
     Roy found Michelle's telephone number in Chet's wallet at the hospital and decided to call her and tell her about Chet's condition.  
     When Michelle received the phone call from Roy DeSoto,  she felt numb.  She always knew that Chet getting hurt was a possibility due to the nature of his work.  But,  after her frightening visit from Chris,  there was another danger.  She thoroughly believed, now, that Chris would hurt,  even kill, Chet if she didn't go back to him.  No matter how much it would hurt her,  she knew what she must do.
    Michelle arrived at the hospital and was more calm on the outside than she felt on the inside.  She checked in at the nurse's station and found out that Chet was in surgery to stop some internal bleeding.  She found a seat in the waiting area and said a little prayer for Chet.  She saw the two firemen looking around and thought that,  maybe,  they were here for Chet.  she went over to them.
    "Excuse me,  are you friends of Chet Kelly?"  she was surprised at her own voice when she spoke.  It was soft and a little high-pitched.  She wanted to cry.
    "Yeah,  I'm Roy DeSoto,  I'm the one that called you.  This is my partner John Gage.  We work with Chet at fifty-one.  Did they tell you that he's in surgery right now?  They think he's going to be okay."  She took it all in as well as was expected.  They came over with her to sit down in the waiting area.
    Johnny couldn't get over how pretty she was.  He kept trying to picture Chet with this beautiful girl and couldn't.  Soon after,  Dr.  Brackett came out to tell them that Chet was out of surgery and looked good.
    "Can I see him, please?"  Dr. Brackett took in the sight of the young girl that looked as if she were going to cry.
    "Dr. Brackett,  this is Michelle Saxon.  Chet's girlfriend."  Dr. Brackett smiled.
     "Yes,  you can see him.  he's in the recovery room right now.  I'll show you the way."  
    He then led her to the recovery room where Chet was still sleeping for the anesthesia.  Michelle went in and sat in the chair by the bed.  Now that she was somewhat alone,  she began to cry.  She was falling in love with him.  She knew that now.  She laid her head down on his chest and cried some more.  A few seconds later,  Chet was awake and running his fingers through her hair.
    "Please don't cry."  He managed to say.  Michelle raised her head and looked into Chet's brown eyes.  She was so happy that he was alright.  She hated what she knew that she had to do,  but she decided to wait until he was out of the hospital.
    Two days later,  Michelle was helping Chet into his apartment.  Aside from being a little sore from the operation,  Dr. Brackett said that Chet was fine and would be back at work within the week.  Michelle was still dreading what she had to do.
    "Chet,  there's something that I need to talk to you about."  Chet had something that he wanted to talk to her about as well.  He had been planning to ask Michelle to marry him,  but his plans seemed to be derailed because of the accident.
    "There's something that I want to talk to you about,  too.  But,  you go first."  Michelle had no idea what he wanted to talk about,  but she was still nervous.
    "I need to break up with you."  Chet looked at her as if he couldn't believe what she was saying.  Maybe,  he didn't hear her right.
    "W-What did you say?"  He wanted her to repeat herself,  but in a way he didn't want her to repeat it.
      "I need to break up with you.  I mean after what happened the other day you can see why I can't put up with worrying about you all of the time."  Michelle had come up with this excuse to make it all seem more credible.  She looked at Chet.  He was still trying to take everything in.  She could tell that he didn't want to believe it.
     "Michelle,  if this is some kind of joke,  it's not funny."  He struggled to say.
    She almost gave it away when he said this.  Boy, did she hate this.  She had to get out of there before she lost it.
    "Well,  I need to be going."  Before Chet could say anything else,  Michelle left.  
    Chet felt terrible.  Aside from the pain from the surgery,  this whole thing with Michelle was too much.
    In considerable pain,  Chet went to the one place that had felt like home.  He went to the station.  He needed to talk to someone.  Heck,  even talking to Gage might make him feel better.
    The gang at the station was surprised to see him,  of course.  He had just gotten out of the hospital that day and they knew that Michelle was picking him up at the hospital and taking him home.
     "Chet, what are you doing here?"  They all expressed their pleasure in seeing him.  But,  they could tell that something was wrong.
    "Hey, uh - Chet I thought that Michelle was coming to the hospital to take you home."
     Chet looked very uncomfortable.
     "Gage,  I need to talk to you."  Chet looked weirder than usual,  so Johnny was happy to comply even if it was just to find out what was going on.
    They went into the locker room and Johnny sat down on the bench and waited for Chet to explain what was going on.  He didn't expect what happened next.
     "Johnny,  Michelle left me.  What am I going to do?"  Chet was crying now.  He couldn't help it.  Johnny,  who was definitely taken off-guard by all of this,  was at a loss for words.  He finally said, "I thought she decided not to go through with it."  Chet looked at Johnny suspiciously.
    "What are you talking about.  She decided not to go through with what?"  Johnny wished that he could bit his tongue. He hadn't meant to tell Chet about the prank,  but after what Chet told him,  it seemed the most logical explanation.  But,  Michelle seemed to be such a level-headed girl.  He didn't know why she would have done this to Chet.
    Chet, on the other hand, at this moment looked crushed - like he was about to jump from a window.
    "Look Chet,  you have to get a hold of yourself.  I know this is a shock and everything.  I mean,  it was just a prank.  You know,  the Phantom."  Johnny thought that he was making Chet feel better,  but he was only making it worse.  This, to Chet,  only meant that Michelle had absolutely no feelings for him at all.  The thought of this was simply unbearable.
    "I've got to get outta here."  Chet got up to leave which to Johnny didn't seem like a good idea.
    "Chet,  maybe you should let us take you home or you should stay here.  you shouldn't be alone."  Chet didn't hear him as he went tearing out of the station.  Johnny felt miserable.  He was afraid that his friend was going to try to hurt himself.
     "Guys,  I think we have a big problem. . ."  He went on to explain to the guys what he and Chet had talked about.

    Chet went back home feeling miserable.  He was madly in love with Michelle and wanted to spend the rest of his life with her.  But,  she didn't want him.  Then he became angry.  He wasn't angry at Michelle, although he told himself that he should be.  He was angry at himself because things like this were always happening to him.  He would find someone that he thought was really special and then all he would have to do is wait for something to go wrong.  Something always went wrong.
    What happened next was uncharacteristic of Chet,  but this was an unusual situation.  He began to trash his apartment.  When he cam to the framed picture that Michelle had given him,  he started to throw it,  but he couldn't.  He loved her.  He held the picture and sat in the middle of the trashed living room.  This was how Johnny, Roy and Michelle found him an hour later.
    Michelle had felt worse and worse about what she had to do to Chet and she was starting to feel guilty.  She had gone over to Chet's apartment in order to tell him the whole thing,  but when she arrived,  he wasn't home.  This was when he had gone to the station.   When he left and came back home,  she had already gone to the station looking for him.  That's when she talked to Johnny and Roy about what she did and then they shared about Chet's weird behavior at the station.  All three concluded that Chet was a danger to himself.  That's when they got permission from Captain Stanley to go to Chet's apartment.  And that's how they found Chet in the middle of his trashed apartment.
    "Chet, oh, Chet.  I'm sorry.  I'm so sorry."  She ran to him and held him there on the floor.  He thought that he was dreaming.  Michelle had left him,  he thought,  but she was here.
    "I thought that you left me; that you didn't want me anymore."  She was crying now and felt really bad about what she had done.
    "I was forced to do that.  Someone from my past,  not a very nice someone, threatened to kill you if I didn't break up with you.  I didn't want anyone to hurt you.  He proved that he could do it.  He was the one that set the structure fire that you were hurt in." She paused to give him an opportunity to think it through.  He was finally about to focus on what she was saying.
     "Did he hurt you?"  Michelle hung her head and pulled up her sleeve where she had a definite bruise from where he had grabbed her.
    "He's also hurt me in the past,  so I had not doubt that he would hurt you.  I couldn't let that happen."  She ran her fingers through his hair and kissed him on the cheek.
    Johnny and Roy,  who were beginning to feel like fifth wheels,  were having trouble believing what they were seeing, although there was no doubt of Michelle's love for Chet.
    "We need to call the police and get this guy arrested."  Michelle nodded.
     "But first,  let's get this mess cleaned up here."  Johnny and Roy were glad that Chet was okay and that Michelle went back to him.  After seeing that everything was okay,  they went back to the station.
    Chris had been watching and knew that Michelle had not done what he told her to do.  this made him even angrier.
    "She's gonna pay."  He thought to himself.  He felt nothing but hatred for Chet and for Michelle.  He began working on a plan to get back at both of them. Whatever he decided,  he knew that it would involve the death of someone.

    The police had been alerted about Chris and they were looking for him at that moment.  Chris knew that this would probably happen,  so he made sure that he was well hidden.  
    Chet and Michelle seemed to be back on track.  In fact,  Chet presented the ring to Michelle and asked her to marry him.
    "Chet,  I don't know what to say.  I do love you. .  ."  She was avoiding things,  Chet could tell.
    "But, . . . "  He had a sad look on his face.  she was going to say no,  he just knew it.
    "I'm not ready yet.  I mean,  with all of this stuff with Chris going on  . . .  once I know that I'm safe,  then I could make a decision."  Chet let out his held breath.  At least she didn't say no,  he thought.  He reached over and kissed her deeply.  He couldn't imagine what life would be like without her.
    A week after the structure fire,  Chet went back to work.  The guys welcomed him back which was their custom and they were all very happy that he and Michelle were back together.  He also formally announced the retirement of the Phantom.
    "That Phantom almost cost me the best thing in the world.  He's history."  They all agreed.
    Michelle,  in the meantime,  was very careful about where she went and how she got there.  Chet made her promise that when he was on duty that she spent time with her girlfriends maybe even spending the night at their houses.  She had promised and was now meeting her friend Melinda for lunch.  They were going to her favorite Mexican restaurant and she planned to pig out because she had no photo shoots that week.
    She had not seen Melinda in a while,  so she would be able to fill her in more on Chet.  When she arrived at the restaurant,  she saw that Melinda wasn't there yet,  so she went ahead and ordered a drink while she waited.  A few minutes later,  the waitress came over and told her that there was a phone call for her. I hope that's not Melinda telling me that she can't make it.  When she reached the phone which was located in a little alcove near the rest rooms,  she picked up the phone.  It was dead. Before she had time to react,  a cloth was put over her mouth and the world went black.
      Chet was in the break room when Cap came in.
     "Kelly, phone."  Chet looked at his watch.  It was probably Michelle.  He had asked her to call when she got home that afternoon.
      "Hey Michelle. . . "  The smile faded from Chet's face.
      "What?  Did anyone see her leave?  Did you all the police?  I'm on my way!"  the guys couldn't help notice what was taking place at the phone.  Chet looked scared.
      "Cap,  I have to leave.  Michelle is missing from a restaurant.  Her friend Melinda thinks that Chris has her."  He didn't wait for an answer from Captain Stanley who understood and was already going to the phone to call in a replacement.

       As Chet drove from the station,  he thought about what it was that he could do.  it wasn't much,  but he felt like he had to go and try to help find her.  He knew that she was probably really scared by now.  the night after they got back together,  Michelle told Chet about her tumultuous relationship with Chris.  She spoke with little emotion about the beatings and humiliation she suffered at Chris' hands.  They cried together and Chet held her afterward.  Now,  as he thought about the things that she told him,  he began to fear for her life.
      Chet arrived at the restaurant where he met Melinda who was talking to the police.
      "Hi, I'm Chet."  Melinda,  who had been crying, instinctively went over and hugged him.
      "I'm sorry Chet.  When I came out to my car,  my tire had been slashed.  I had a friend change it,  but I was late getting here.  When I arrived and asked about her,  the maitre d' told me that she ha a phone call.  That was the last time that he saw her.  The police seem to think that Chris was waiting in the rest room until she came.  No one saw her being taken out,  but he could have taken her out of the restroom window which lets out into the alley."  Chet had tried to believe that anything else had happened,  but it now looked like she had been taken.  Surely she would have called if something else had happened.
    "We have a description of the guy and of the young lady and we're doing all that we can to find them.  But,  the problem is that he knows that we're looking for him."
     Michelle was a bit fuzzy as she woke up.  Also,  her mouth felt like cotton.  she was a little confused, at first,  then she remembered that someone had taken her when she went to the phone.  She had only one guess as to who had taken her.
     "You're awake,  Shelly.  Here,  you need to eat something."  Chris offered her a sandwich,  but she didn't feel like eating.  She wanted Chet and started to cry.
     "Oh,  don't give me the tears,  Shelly.  You brought this on yourself,  you know.  If you had just followed my instructions and gotten rid of that guy,  you wouldn't be in this mess."  He was now trying to blame it on her.  For some reason,  in the back of her mind,  she thought about the psychological ramifications that he was going through.  It was the basic pattern of an abusive personality - blaming the victim for what he is doing.  It felt strange to be thinking about Psychology 101,  but she had to think of anything to get her mind off of what Chris might do to her.

    "So,  this is the great Chet Kelly that I've heard so much about."  Melinda was trying to make light in spite of the circumstances.  Chet sort of blushed as he realized that Michelle had been talking about him.
     "What did she say about me?"  Melinda smiled.  Michelle had been right about Chet's sense of humor.
     "All I know is that she has been happier since she met you than I've ever seen her especially since she broke up with that scum Chris."  She hadn't meant to mention Chris' name,  but it seemed as if the subject  couldn't be avoided.
     "She loves you, you know."  Chet reacted as if it were news to him.  He had always wondered if Michelle loved him,  but he was afraid to ask.
      "She said that you were something special that she couldn't let go."  Chet looked as if her were going to cry.
     "We have to get her back,  Melinda.  Can you think of anywhere Chris might take her?  Did she ever talk about someplace that they went together?"  Melinda thought for a minute.
      "She talked about a cabin that they used to go up to.  He said that it belonged to his uncle or somebody."  Chet smiled.
        "Do you remember where it was or his uncle's name?"
       Chet called the police and gave them the information that Melinda came up with.  Within the hour they called back and said that they had a location for the cabin.
       "Please,  can I be there when you go.  She needs me."  Lt. Talbot told him to meet them at the cabin,  but to wait until they could take Chris into custody.   Chet and Melinda left immediately.
       When Chet and Melinda arrived at the cabin,  the police already had the cabin surrounded.  Chet was nervous.  What if Chris saw the police and decided to kill Michelle and then himself.  Were they sure that Chris hadn't killed her already?

Chester Part 3