On the Run

Sarah arrived at the boarding house. The door had been left standing open. W.A. and whoever else was here had left in a hurry.

"W.A.? W.A.?" she called out a few times. She knew it was futile, but she had to try.

Using the light on her own cellphone, Sarah looked around until she found W.A.'s phone on the ground. She considered leaving it there in case W.A. came back for it, but if he had forgotten it in the first place, he likely wasn't going to remember. Better not leave it to get stolen or something.

She looked around. She couldn't see any signs of a struggle, so maybe W.A. was safe. She very much hoped and prayed this was the case.

She got back in her car, took a few deep breaths, and then started driving into the city. She had no clear destination; all she had was hope that their paths would cross.

_______________________

"Well, how do I look?" W.A. said, as he stood there in clothes that screamed "hipster."

"You look like a middle-aged man who's trying very hard to appear cool," Mia replied.

"Gee, thanks a lot."

"No, that's a GOOD thing! You don't like you're trying to hide. People will look at you awkwardly and then look away as quick as possible."

"Well, that's what we're going for. You all set?"

Mia confirmed that she was. W.A. went to the counter and paid. Then they slipped out of the store, and W.A.'s heart skipped a beat.

"What?" Mia asked. "Is it them?"

W.A. nodded. He tried to speed up without looking like he sped up. Mia fought the urge to turn and look, and kept pace with W.A.

When they were out of the building, they hurried quickly and caught the trolley.

"Where to next? The Dominion Hotel?" Mia asked.

"The Dominion Hotel," W.A. confirmed.

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Founded in 1963, the Dominion Hotel had been through its share of financial ups and downs. In the early 1990s, when hotel business was booming for other chains, the Dominion struggled to catch anyone's interest. Simply put, it just wasn't the nicest hotel on the block.

But then, in the mid-1990s, something happened. Flocks of people began staying there, perhaps driven by the hotel's extremely low prices. What was weirder, but something only noticed by people in the accounting department, is that the same people often stayed there all the time. The last name "Mallory" showed up frequently, as did "Wells," "Arturo," "Brown," and a few others. (And every so often, they'd get an "Underhill.") While it was unusual to see so much repeat business in a short period of time, it wasn't odd enough to bring to the attention of Corporate, especially not when they made as much money as they did. Why argue with success?

Gomez Calhoun, who worked the front desk (as he did most days), had seen it all...which is why he wasn't alarmed in the least when a young lady came running in with an urgent look on her face.

"Excuse me," she said. "Has a man my age and height checked in here? Name of Miles Turner?"

"Oh, yeah," Gomez said. "Guy kind of looks like the dude from 'Split'?"

The young woman looked puzzled for a second, then said, "Yeah. I never thought of that, but...I guess so."

"He already paid," Gomez said. "He's up in room 305. Here, let me give you another key."

Mia sighed deeply. "Thank you so much!"

After Gomez finished making the electronic key for her, Mia took it and went on her way, followed closely behind by a somewhat older-looking gentleman who seemed familiar. Was he one of the guys who checked in here before under the name "Arturo"? Gomez thought about it for another minute, then did what he usually did: He decided it was none of his business. It was almost break time, so he went in the back to heat up the cheese for his nachos in the microwave.

_________________________

Mia, who normally wasn't given to big emotional outbursts, could hardly contain how relieved she was that Miles was here, that she was safe, and that he was at this hotel.

So you can only imagine her stunning disappointment and frustration when she discovered that Room 305 was empty. Miles wasn't in the room, and there was no note or message from him. This wasn't like him. Mia felt like all the air had been sucked out from her lungs again.

W.A., who had been impressed that Miles and Mia had a plan in case they got separated, and wondered why the odds were always so good that sliders chose the Dominion, just said, "Well, now what we do?"

"I don't know!" Mia yelled, letting the stress get to her for a minute. W.A. didn't seem to take it personally.

She sat down on the bed in frustration, but stood up again a second later when a voice said, "I have an idea."

The voice belonged to Agent 47. He had caught the door before it had shut, and he held a gun at them.

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