"Mac," she acknowledged, voice low so that no one who was, by happenstance, nearby could hear Jo's conversation as she lay on top of one of the intermodal cargo containers, ready to ship off from the harbor. It was located at the end of the aisle, that housed all of the freight ready for transportation, as well as several warehouses, both used and unused. Sanchez, one of Lizarro's men, and his crew, which now included Jo, had made a 'home' for themselves in one of them.
Detective Danville had discovered that it was hard to keep in touch with the lab in a discreet manner, especially at first when they hadn't trusted her at all, and they had followed every move that she dared to make. She and Mac filled each other in at night, mostly, when she saw her chance to be 'at peace', insofar possible. Jo's 'free moments' were incredibly sparse the first few days that she had been undercover, but now, they let her go for a short walk, most evenings, as long as she didn't take longer than half an hour w22;w22; the time Sanchez had set for her. Of course, she hadn't met the top men of the cartel yet. She doubted she ever would.
"I heard Sanchez and Hernando talk earlier," Jo informed Mac, in the same hushed tones. "I bet I wasn't supposed to. I do believe now that they plan a transfer with the Japanese drug cartel, as you had already predicted. Ha Ming's name was dropped in the conversation. I'm relatively certain that he's pretty high up, from what I heard."
She could nearly hear him nod at his end of the line as silence dictated their 'conversation'. When Jo couldn't take the awkwardness anymore, when she opened her mouth to say good night to Mac and turn the headset off for now, Mac's voice sounded once more. "Jo, how are things for you now?"
She was a tad shocked at first, when the question came, and it took her a minute to tell herself he really must have meant for her to hear and answer. "I'm all right," she said, at long last. "I'm still hopeful. If I can stay in Sanchez' favor, maybe I can warm up to Lizarro and force a breakthrough... as well as ensure his cartel and all of his comrades go right down with him. If they plan a transfer and I can pass on the right information in the right time frame, I can take more than one cartel down. From what I garnered, Ha Ming wants it to happen really fast if they go through with all this."
"Okay," Mac stated. He paused. "That's not an answer, though."
Jo Danville bit her lip. Why didn't he let it go? Why did he hold her back and point at her lack of a personal, or more personal, answer? If Mac had asked the same question two months ago or longer, she would have been likelier to be open with him, to tell him her thoughts and feelings, whereas now, she felt as if a strange, invisible force held her back. Then again, if this situation had arisen all but two months earlier, she very likely wouldn't have opted to go on the mission herself, or felt like she needed to just take a break from the lab w22;w22; a break from him.
"I'm fine, Mac. I miss the world I live in, but the thought that I can put an end to all of this helps me," she spoke and released a bit of the truth.
When he spoke next, it was softly, rather than harsh like it had been since his incident. "You're so strong, Jo. If there's anyone who can put this to an end, it is you," he said. "What do you miss most if you could have your pick?"
Jo frowned in thought and slumped back slightly, against hard and cold metal. She stared off in the dark, starry night and, unconsciously, relaxed a bit as she thought of the things she loved and picked the things she thought to be worthy to mention to Mac, like she had before he got shot, before Christine. "Mhmm..." she thought. "You know, I miss late nights in my pajamas, curled up on the couch with a burger and a movie. There's not a lot of pajamas and movies in this hell hole here."
A small laugh resounded in response, but she heard the tension in Mac's laugh as well, and she could tell he was nearly afraid to laugh. "When all this is over and we've got the perps, I'll get you a ton of movies to watch and a fair bit of time off to watch them. Maybe I will throw in a bottle of scotch."
Jo was the one with the smile this time, as he remembered her love for good scotch after work. "To be fair..." she began. "I don't reckon that I will have scotch or any other alcoholic drinks for a long time after this is over with. Most everyone's wasted here every second of every day, and I live between half-emptied bottles strewn across the floor and the shabby furniture that they've got."
Silence fell between them again then, and Jo thought that it was really nice to be able to talk to Mac again that way. This time, there wasn't any awkwardness at all. That's when all of a sudden she heard a harsh voice scream at the top of its lungs, on her side, "VALERIE?! Where the fuck are you?!"
"Shit," she mouthed as she realized she must have lost any and all idea of time as she and Mac talked. She should have already been back. "Shit," she said as she sat up and broke her connection with Mac. She knew that if she didn't get a move on, and fast, that it could be the end of the operation. She felt her heart race as she thought about the consequences.
Summary: Detective Josephine Danville needed to take a step back from the man she didn't recognize anymore. She didn't believe that reconnection was at all possible, but was it? JAC.