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Summary: Sally Donovan is a copper.  She's part of Lestrade's team, and no one messes with his people.

Warning: strong language



Sally Donovan kept to the shadows as she approached the building. She couldn't see any watchers, but that didn't mean anything.

This had to be it. The few hints the Freak had dropped, combined with what they knew about how the gang operated and records of movements in this area pointed to an industrial unit around here. The taxi driver she'd tracked down earlier had dropped the Doctor and the Freak off not far away. She felt in her bones it was the right one.

She worked her way slowly through the yard, pausing in a nice deep patch of shadow to pull her phone. She didn't want to risk a voice call but had to keep the team informed, so a quick text would have to do.

Ah, there was a door, fractionally ajar, OK. Listen and if there was life then wait for backup and we go in. Damn! Someone there, keep very still....

Suddenly a squeal of brakes, a car slid into the yard and caught her in the lights, she ducked back and it all went to hell in a handbasket.

Someone grabbed her from behind, she twisted her weight down and around, trying to lever out of the hold as she elbowed him, the angle was wrong and he grunted but kept hold. She scraped her booted foot down his shin and hard into his instep. He yelped in pain as she slipped his grip and sprinted for the gates.

Two more appeared, she scrabbled for her warrant card, "Police, stay where you are" but they didn't give a shit and three against one is no odds if you were one of the riot squad, never mind five foot six and eight stone. Oh God, that crunch was her phone, she was sure of it.

"Police are you love? Well, won't that be fun" said the tatooed thug holding her left arm. He twisted it into a jointlock and dragged her into the building.

This was not good. Not good at all.

She was shoved into a largish room containing one Freak, tied to a chair, one Doctor, ditto, a large table, a bunch of crates that could contain anything, a couple more rent-a-thugs and a man wearing a suit and a skinhead haircut.

"Says she's a copper Mick" said Tatts, still holding her arm twisted painfully.

"Didn't make 'em that good looking when I was young" said Skinhead as he wandered over.

Time. Backup coming, needed time. Keep quiet, see what he wanted, play for time.

Skinhead looked her over "Bit skinny darling, but I'll take what I can get." He turned back to the Freak "Don't think much of your backup pretty boy"

The Freak looked at them in contempt "Police. Stupid, they are stupid, you are all stupid".

Skinhead walked over and backhanded him, making the Doctor surge in his seat "Maybe, but I'm not the one tied to a chair eh?"

"Sammy, do a sweep of the area in case there are more coppers wandering about." Well that was one less thug, not that it made much difference right now.

He turned his attention back to her. Tatts handed him her warrant card, which he glanced at and dropped "A Detective Sergeant eh? Well that's going to be something to boast about, having a DS"

She knew this sort of thing was coming, she'd been warned about it early on in her CID career by a more experienced detective over drinks. "You'll get some blokes who will see you as a notch on the bedpost. They'll go all gooey about sticking it in a copper. You just have to distance yourself from it if it ever happens. They'll try to reduce you to a cunt, but you are a copper. So remember that and don't let them make you forget it."

"Did it happen to you Sharon?" she'd asked, greatly daring. DS Harker had looked at her sideways "It's not just villains you have to worry about" she'd said, and gone off to get another drink.

Sally just looked Skinhead in the eye and said nothing. Time. Play for time.

"What are you doing here then bitch? Looking for these two? Dunno why, the little one's crippled and the other one's not good for much."

Well she could agree with that, but didn't think saying so was going to be useful.

"Now... where there's one copper there's going to be others. So where's the rest of 'em bitch?" And he casually slapped her, fast, shocking!

"Assaulting an officer will get you a jail term" she said with more bravado than she felt. "Only if anyone knows about it darling" he said with a very unpleasant smile.

"Fix her up, we'll have some fun".

The Doctor started making a fuss. Tatts's mate went over and slapped him silly which got the Freak going and he copped a bit too. Meanwhile Tatts and another bloke had her hands tied behind her and pushed her against the wall. Must have run out of chairs. All three of them trussed up like chickens in the butcher's, fine crimefighters they were!

Skinhead had that look in his eye and she knew it was all going downhill from here. Come on backup! Come on.

"The rest of the squad will be here soon, don't make it worse for yourselves" she said, feeling monumentally silly saying it in this situation, but what could you do?

Skinhead reached over and patted her cheek "Oh I look forward to it, but meanwhile you are here and I'm going to have my fun".

She looked him in the eye hoping her terror didn't show. And to avoid looking at the bulge in his pants.

He reached forward, mashing her breast lust in his eyes but if that was for sex or for pain she couldn't tell and didn't want to know. A jerk and he'd ripped her shirt open, grinning. One hand groping her viciously between the legs, the other her breast, his mouth coming closer. She bit at him and he pulled back backhanding her as he did so. Maybe that hadn't been such a good idea.

Because Skinhead had a knife now. A wicked looking thing gleaming in the light. He brought it forward to her face, she couldn't help her eyes widening, and her body tensing. "Oh yes bitch. You are going to be all mine, you are going to beg for it" and he fondled himself through his trousers.

"Come on backup!" she thought as he brought the knife down to her exposed skin and she cringed away from it because she couldn't help herself.

The door exploded.

Two big uniforms slammed through and then the DI came pounding in, stabvest over shirtsleeves and a baton in his hand.

Skinhead looked up his eyes wide, stepped back, lifted the knife, and got the baton across his wrist with a very satisfying crack.

Lestrade's eyes swept her, saw the bruises and the torn clothes, turned back to Skinhead who was holding his wrist and yelling. The baton swept up hard between the bastard's legs practically lifting him off the ground as the DI put some body English into it. Skinhead collapsed onto the floor unable to even scream.

She felt Mike then, scrabbling at the ropes, cutting them off, breath on her ear, holding her as the ropes came free, his frantic "Sally, you OK Sally?" the most welcome sound in the world. Even better than Skinhead's choked noises.

"I'm OK, oh God I'm glad you're here, I'm OK Mike" as she pulled her torn shirt over herself. Mike wrapped his coat around her, she knew he wanted to hug her and hold her but not here, he got as close to it as he could though.

There was a moment of almost quiet, the gang under control, the only noise the sobbing from the man on the floor.

The DI looked around the room, baton tapping against his leg. "Sally, any of these other pricks guilty of resisting arrest?"

Tatts shifted looking ready to make a break, the uniform nearest him raised his baton hopefully and he subsided.

"You're late as usual" that was the Freak, arrogant as always.

"Shut up Sherlock, I'll get to you", said the boss, turning back to her.

"Do you need a doc Sally? You sure you are OK?"

"Yes sir, I'm fine. Couple of bruises, could do with a drink, that's all."

He gave her his quick grin and said "we'll do the drinks good and proper later, after we've sorted this lot".

Someone had got the Freak and the Doctor loose, and the DI went over to talk to them. She shared a look with Mike, wishing not for the first time (or the last) that they didn't have to sneak around.

Then they turned back to the job of sorting this lot. Because that's what coppers do.

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September 2010

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