Part 1d.


By the time Jonathan Miller showed up, Hutch had fashioned as much of a human of himself as he could. He did his best to be congenial, while trying not to show how embarrassed he was. It had been one hell of a way to renew an acquaintance. He couldn't remember their last meeting, but this had to be a drastic comedown.

Miller didn't help matters any by reminding him of that meeting. "The last time I saw you, you were in, uh, law school, weren't you? Right here, I think. You'd brought your new bride home and we met at your father's club. I think it was Christmas, or Thanksgiving." He looked around and it was easy to hear what he had left unsaid: what happened to you?

Just couldn't live up to the Great Expectations, Hutch thought. "I quit law school. Couldn't stand Corporate Law, so I changed to Criminal. Never got around to completing it."

Corporate Law had been the senior Hutchinson's choice. It had taken his offspring a semester to realize he hated what was basically the legal machinations to make the rich richer, almost three years to summon enough courage to get out of it. By that time, Van had had her heart set on being supported by a lawyer; after all, that was what she had thought she was marrying. Hutch had decided switching to Criminal Law would be fair to both until he had learned that justice and law went hand in hand only in theory in that field as well. In reality, guilt or innocence mattered not a whit, but which side one happened to be arguing and legal one-upmanship.

"I wasn't cut out to be a lawyer," he finished.

"Nonsense. I remember all those team debates. You used to wipe the floors with everybody."

"That was when I was young enough to be sure everything came in black and white. Once you start seeing the grays, you end up arguing with yourself." That was also, he remembered, before I found out real pressure makes me stutter.

"What made you decide to become a policeman?" Miller asked with curiosity. "Uh, my mother told me you had. She keeps me posted on the hometown gossip. But it's the last thing I'd have envisioned for you."

Immaturity, Hutch wanted to answer. It had been so clear, so straightforward once. He had been genuinely interested in law, but disillusioned with the applications. A cop didn't deal in pulling laws out of shape to suit his purposes; he just served them. The Blue Knights. Protectors. The true champions of Law and Order. Or so he'd thought.

"It seemed like a good idea," he answered, then added, "at the time."

Van had been furious, especially when the Hutchinson family let its displeasure be known, and support, in form of cash, had stopped making a monthly appearance. To placate her, Hutch had almost begged for an assignment at Beverly Hills, since that was something that had seemed to appeal to his wife. It had spelled a hiatus in the friendship he had formed with one David Starsky, another notion that had cheered Van considerably; she had never considered the man socially acceptable. Starsky had been a little upset, especially since John, the third partner of "The Corsican Brothers" team, had also left to join the Army, but he had been quiet about it when Hutch had announced that his assignment had come through. After over a year of lost poodles and dented Cadillac fenders, placating Van had lost all its charm, and he had asked for a transfer to the inner city. The fact that he had actually started to enjoy his job had been the last straw for Van.

"What happened to your lovely bride?" Miller asked as if he had been eavesdropping on Hutch's thoughts. "Her, I remember very well. Hard to forget a lady that beautiful."

Beautiful Van. Beautiful, ambitious Van. Beautiful, ambitious, dead Van. "She's dead," Hutch answered shortly. Let Miller make what he would of it.

"I'm sorry. I didn't know."

"It's okay. It's been awhile."

Something in his expression must have been forbidding; Miller changed the subject to himself, talking about his successful real estate business and how he had moved to LA some years ago. Yes, he had known Hutch was there, had caught glimpses of him on the TV coverage of this and that case, but somehow had never gotten around to looking him up. Duluth and high school days had been so far away, but he was happy about the coincidence that had brought them together again. Some time later, he got up.

"Well, well, look at the time past noon. Why don't I take you to my club for lunch?"

"Jonathan, I really don't feel like eating. And I'm in no shape to be seen at any club," Hutch said, indicating his face.

The truth of that statement couldn't be argued. "Okay. But I insist on taking you as soon as you feel up to it. It's a rod and gun club. We call ourselves enthusiasts, but we're also serious about it. My friends would love to pit themselves against a trained policeman. I would, too. I do pretty good at the range."

The talk turned to guns, then got nostalgic as high school competitions were rehashed. Hutch decided that it was nice to have the company of a friend with similar interests again.

The pleasant mood vanished after Miller left that evening. Another work day loomed, in which he had to start a new partnership. He wasn't looking forward to it. He'd bet that neither was Washington.


It wasn't an auspicious morning by any means. He felt rotten upon waking up, and had to down some pain killers before he could start to function. It hurt enough to wash his face, so he decided against shaving. Nothing was going to make him look presentable anyway. He dressed in anything that came readily to his hands, and after a short debate, put the sunglasses back on the dresser. They wouldn't begin to cover the damage.

As luck would have it, the first person Hutch ran into while entering the building was Meredith, and behind her, predictably, Starsky, who started to walk casually past, then stopped dead when he got a good look at his ex-partner. Hutch brusquely brushed past him, in no mood to have the long silence broken by questions about the sight he presented. He noted that Starsky was still looking after him with a frown when the elevator doors slid shut behind the blond man.

Already irritated by one encounter, he stepped off the elevator and came face to face with Dobey and Washington. The Captain was giving the young man his usual spiel reserved for officers hitting the streets for the first time as full-fledged detectives.

Aren't we going to make a lovely pair, Hutch thought, looking Washington over. The way the black man had dressed, he seemed to have confused working the streets with a job interview at some corporate headquarters.

They stood staring at each other as Hutch reflected on the little ironies of life. The looks they were giving one another were probably pretty close to the looks exchanged between Starsky and himself upon their first meeting except Hutch had been on the other side of the fence then. The resemblance of this scene to an earlier one changed as Washington's expression quickly turned to disgust and he threw a glance at the Captain which clearly said: Do I really have to ride with that?

"What the hell happened to you?" Dobey demanded.

"I walked into a door."

"Hutchinson," the Captain said warningly.

Hutch had little patience. "If it was any of the department's business, you'd have had a report about it sir!"

"The way my detectives present themselves to the public is the department's business," Dobey snapped.

"Not much I can do about it now. Should I take leave until I'm fit for civilization?"

Dobey glared at him. "Get on with it. And tomorrow, shave!"

At the garage, Hutch headed for his car, but Washington stubbornly stopped by his own, his expression saying he wasn't going to give another inch that day. Hutch shrugged and jumped into the brown and tan Buick.

As they eased out of the parking lot, Hutch caught his new partner's sideways glance. "Don't worry," he snapped. "It isn't catching."

"I'm not so sure about that."

Hutch hadn't expected an answer. He had only been trying to embarrass the young man. He realized Washington wasn't going to be a patsy. "What?"

"Lackadaisical attitudes contaminate performance, and partners affect each other."

Oh, boy, Hutch thought, someone who adopted Academy lectures as gospel and an intellectual at that. That was a mouthful.

He briefly wondered if, at first, he had irritated Starsky the way Washington was irritating him. It was disturbing to see in the gung-ho, proper young detective himself in some past. The White Knight title is all yours, kid. Go take on the dragon. Your shiny armor will rust one day, too. And the next time you look back, you'll be wondering when you fell off your charger.

What was supposed to be a sarcastic thought left him strangely saddened for the young man whose illusions would also one day be shattered. He crushed the feeling of kinship with hostility, "I have to ride with you, Washington. I don't have to listen to your half-assed theories. Spare me."

He turned away from the quiet anger of the young detective and prepared to endure the day.


Hutch had speculated that, considering how his new partnership had started out, it had no place to go but up. He had been wrong. They were constantly at cross purposes, and they couldn't talk without snapping. Then one or the other tuned out, accomplishing nothing. He dreaded opening his eyes to another workday.

At least there was Miller. Hutch found himself starved for company, for simple human interaction away from the pressures of work. Miller was a sympathetic ear, an undemanding presence, and about the only friendly face in his life these days.

Leaning against the railing separating the sun porch from the firing range, Hutch decided that he also enjoyed the club Miller had introduced him to. It was all-male, very traditional, even a bit straitlaced in tone. Right now, he was taking a break, watching others at the sport. This was the way he liked it; guns and rifles should be tools of skill and good-natured competition. The smells and sounds of a firing range were as intimately a part of him as a mother's heartbeat to a baby. When they were dissociated from the hurt they could cause, they became enjoyable.

Figuring one day he might pit his skills against theirs, he studied the competitors. Miller had been right in claiming they were serious enthusiasts. Nobody at the range could be called an amateur. Strange. There had to be beginners somewhere. Maybe this club only accepted those already at a certain skill level.

The more he watched, the more he noticed. The precision with which the weapons were handled, the body language of the shooters none of the slack attitudes of weekend sportsmen here. It was almost like watching a drill team. Maybe they were participants of local or national championship teams. In any case, professionalism was a joy to behold, even during a pleasant pastime.

Slowly, other impressions drifted in. Most of the members were young. Hutch focused on some, seeing steady hands, economy of motion and a certain no, not a crouch, but a contraction every time the target came up. A gathering-together of muscles that could have ended in a crouch. Nobody who didn't expect the target to shoot back should be trained to defensive reflexes. Not all amateurs. Some military backgrounds.

He felt somebody's eyes on him and turned. A tall man, in his mid-fifties, very well dressed and looking affluent, was studying him from head to foot. Hutch felt a strange urge to check his appearance, as if the man's approval was important. He wondered why he was suddenly reminded of his father, then noticed the slightly protruding eyes under the silvered eyebrows that seemed to say they weren't used to being disappointed. Hutch shrugged off the urge to straighten out his clothes. He had started disregarding presentability at work, partly because he didn't care, partly because it aggravated the hell out of Washington, but he had taken pains not to embarrass Miller at his club. He was in respectable clothes and even his hair was combed carefully. Although maybe he needed a haircut.

The man seemed to approve of what he saw. He approached with a smile. "You must be Jonathan's friend, the police detective. I'm Thornton Osgood. I own this club. Officially, that is. In reality, it belongs to all of us."

Hutch extended his hand. "Kenneth Hutchinson. Nice place you got here."

"I hear you've been giving my boys competition."

"I tried a few times, but I don't think I'm much of a " Osgood's eyes went to the range. Cutting off, Hutch followed his gaze. Miller was shooting. They watched for a while, then Hutch whistled. "Wow. I didn't know he was that good."

"Jonathan is the club champion," Osgood put in, "Come on, young man, I'll buy you a drink."

Hutch followed him into the bar. They exchanged a few pleasantries, then a group came in off practice and they were surrounded. He noted that Osgood acted much like a proud father toward the members.

Miller dropped into the seat next to Hutch. "I see you've met Thorn. He's a good friend. I've been meaning to introduce you." He leaned close. "He'll ask you to call him Thornton, but make it Thorn. He likes to consider himself a thorn in the side of today's complacent society."

Hutch wondered what that meant. "He doesn't seem to mind that I'm not a member."

"Of course not. You're my guest. And if you want to become a member, I'm sure you'll be welcome."

Hutch looked around. "I doubt if I can afford it."

"Maybe not as long as you're on the police force. Why don't you get out, Kenny? I've been watching you. You're not happy, so why stay?"

It was a question Hutch had been asking himself a lot. "I don't know," he answered sincerely. "Maybe because I don't know what else I can do."

"Are you kidding? This is your high school buddy here. I know your potential. What I don't understand is why you keep wasting it. If you ever seriously consider getting out, I have some suggestions."

"I just might take you up on it maybe sooner than you think."

"I mean it, Kenny. Think about it and let me know when you're ready. For now, how about a bite to eat, then I'd like to take you on at the range."

"I don't know if I should accept that. I just saw you out there. How did you get so good?"

"Practice, pal, practice." Miller started talking about when he had gotten interested in firearms, and in the end it was Osgood who invited both to eat. Others joined them. The conversation ranged from club news to national news. Hutch decided that this was the most decent, intelligent, patriotic-sounding group he had been in since he didn't know when. They were all well-dressed, clean-cut, informed, polite, and the young men were respectful, deferential. For a minute it bothered him. There was a vague sense of camp discipline about it all, a feeling of being in school, with Osgood as the principal, and Miller as...vice-principal?

Hutch shook off the impression. This is the way it should be, he decided. I've been on the wrong side of the streets, among dregs of humanity for so long that I've forgotten that order and civilization still exist.


"Clean slate, right?" the woman asked for maybe the twentieth time. She was scrunched in the back seat of the car, afraid to be seen with the two detectives. It was also her reaction to every small enclosure.

"You got it," Hutch assured again, but not too gently. "Just make sure you hold up your end of the bargain."

So far, all efforts to infiltrate a mob-backed prostitution and drug ring had failed. Then Metro had rounded up a group of women from their stable, on charges that would stick. One of them had agreed to cooperate. She was going back in, now on informant amnesty.

"Can...can I get out now...please?"

They were still far from the area where it could be risky for her to be with the detectives, but Hutch took a look at her face wet with perspiration, and motioned at Washington to stop the car. "Check in every day, even if there's nothing to report. You don't want us coming to look for you."

She nodded nervously and disappeared into the crowd. "She's on edge," Washington observed.

"They live there. She'll manage."

"Hope so. If something happens to her " Because of me, said the unspoken thought.

For a change, Washington wasn't his haughty self. In fact, he seemed to need something from the more experienced partner. It was the first time the young detective had recruited a snitch and sent her out into the streets unprotected. He was learning the burden of responsibility.

Please don't look to me for assurance, Hutch thought. I can't make it easier for you. If I told you she'll be all right, it'll be a lie. I know better. I used to fool myself, but I can't even do that anymore not since Lionel. The only thing I can say is that you'll get used to it, but you don't want to hear that.

"She's young...looks so helpless," Washington insisted.

Damnit, don't lean on me. I can't take the weight. I can't. "Don't be naive. There are no blushing innocents in her line of work. She'll manage." It was the best he could do.

They pulled into the traffic, Washington still worrying the bone. "You pointed her out to me. How did you know she'd cooperate when the other women wouldn't so much as open their mouths?"

"I ran into her before," Hutch briefly answered. Leave it alone.


Shit! "So I knew she'd do anything to keep from going to jail, even into an overnight cell."

"How come?"

"She's got acute claustrophobia, that's how come!" Happy now?

Washington's head snapped around. "You mean she's sick? And I just took advantage of " He cut off, obviously trying to remind himself of the priorities of his job. He drove silently, frowning. After a while, he spoke up, bitterness in his voice. "Isn't this where you're supposed to tell me about the Big Picture? Isn't that the senior's job?"

Oh, Jesus, what do you want from me, kid? I've been there; it doesn't get any better. "I'm not going to tell you of any damn picture," Hutch wearily answered, thinking of all the times he had struggled for the pawns while this and that official with clout slapped him down, pointing at their all-important Big Pictures. And the one time he had wanted to look at the Big Picture, in the case which had started with two Vegas showgirls on a desert road and had snowballed to impossible proportions, they had blocked him at every turn. "There's no such thing as big or small pictures. Only those they'll see fit to show you. You'll understand that when you're not so wet behind the ears."

"I'd rather be wet behind the ears than turn into an uncaring has " Washington broke off, contempt in his dark face. His voice was cold and detached when he spoke again. "Where do you want to be dropped off?"

Hutch checked his watch. He was already late to meet Miller. He gave the address of the real estate office to Washington.

When they pulled up in front of the building, Hutch saw that the place was already closed. Miller was waiting in front of it, talking to someone. As he got out of the car, both men turned toward the detective, Miller's companion coming out of the shadows. Damn, Hutch thought. Miller had seen him before in work environment, and worse. But so far, Osgood was used to seeing him look like a civilized being.

"Sorry I'm late. Hello, Thorn," he said, going up the steps, then answered the look on the older man's face with a deprecating wave at himself. "It's a dirty job, but somebody's got to do it."

Osgood smiled indulgently. "I came to talk with Jonathan, but I hear you young people have plans. Dates? Dancing?"

"Not that I know of " Hutch started, then saw Miller's nod. "Oh, for heaven's sake, Jonathan, I'm a bit too old for blind dates."

"No big deal, just two secretaries from the steno pool. Come on, Kenny, remember the old times? Besides, I'd hate to disappoint Brenda and Julie."

Hutch felt too weary for anything other than food and sleep, but didn't want to hurt a well-intentioned friend. "All right. Just let me go home to wash up and change, or you'll really be disappointing Brenda and Julie."

"Fine. I'll drive " Both men suddenly looked past Hutch, and Osgood frowned. "Friend of yours?" Miller asked.

The detective turned. For some reason, Washington hadn't left. He was out of the car, watching the group. Hutch wondered what business he had left unfinished. "Friend? Hell, no, just my latest partner," he explained, letting his irritation at the notion show.

"He's your partner?" Osgood asked.

There was a peculiar note to the question which puzzled Hutch. He decided that the well-groomed, immaculate black man was contrasting sharply with his own appearance at the moment. "The department says so. Our work makes strange bedfellows."

The stony expression on Osgood's face relaxed. Hutch wondered why he felt like a kid who had just given an acceptable answer to a demanding father. "Excuse me a minute. I'll see what he wants now."

He went down the steps. Washington was still looking up, past him, with a frown. "Something wrong?"

"You tell me."

Hutch followed his gaze. Only Miller and Osgood stood there. "They're my friends. You got a problem?"

Washington shook his head angrily. "No. You do, and I just realized what it is."

He jumped back into the car. Hutch stared after the vehicle. What the hell...?


Another fizzled-out bust. Dobey had accepted the report without a word, but Washington had been upset. Not bothering to hide his intent, he had stayed to talk to the Captain privately. Hutch wondered what Dobey would make of the news that his `reliable' cop had frozen, and because of that a criminal was still at large. It had happened to him only once before during all his years on the force, and that had never gone farther than between him and his partner.

This time, before the shooting started, Hutch had seen the speedboat at the private dock and known that the drug dealer would get away if he reached it first. Someone had to get to the other end of the pier, climb up and take him from the back. As the senior partner, he should've been the one to go. But Hutch knew he'd be vulnerable during the last part of the climb, in plain sight with both his hands busy. To take that chance, he had to trust his partner to make an open, frontal attack. Hutch had simply been unable to believe Washington would make a tempting target of himself for a partner he couldn't care less about. He knew it cut both ways. The young detective had been rooted to his spot also, more than likely for the same reason. Catch-22.

Bullet-riddled confrontations were no place for distrust between partners. All at once, Hutch had found himself unable to even return fire. He had stayed huddled behind cover, praying, for the first time in his professional life, that the backup units would show up, take charge, relieve him of the responsibility. The term `wash-out' was coming too close for comfort. Resigning may no longer be something he only owed to himself.

Now Hutch was wondering what he was doing at Miller's party. He was certainly not in a festive mood and the noise was getting to him. It had to be a case of having nothing better to do. Wondering where Miller had disappeared to, he eyed his cocktail and decided to make it the last one. In his state of mind, it wouldn't take much to get him drunk, and he didn't want to do that again.

A vivacious form reclaimed his attention. Someone had introduced them earlier and the woman insisted on finding her way to his side, teasingly close, eyes inviting. But every time he made a move, she turned coy. Lady, he thought, if you want to take me somewhere and screw my brains out, I'm more than willing, but I'm in no mood for games. "Excuse me," he said out loud, and ducked through the nearest doorway.

For a moment, he hoped she'd follow, then shrugged off the thought. He was in the study and the peaceful room was a relief. He walked around, running his fingers lightly over the shelves of books. There were collection of real estate, economics and stock market related material. The second stack of shelves contained various other books.

Hutch wondered what Miller's college degree was. He had never thought to ask. He seemed to be interested in history, philosophy and...anthropology? He scanned some of the titles: Doctrine of Totalitarianism, Shutzstaffel A New Birth, A Critical Look at the Versailles Treaty, Philosophy of the New Order, Modern Revolution, My Struggle, Race and Nationality, Practical Applications of Cultural Anthropology, Theory of Segregation....

He pulled one out at random. Nietschze. One of his later books about his philosophical ideal of `superman.' A much maligned writer whose words had been fodder for Nazi propagandists after careful editing. Maybe Miller's interest was World War II. Of course. Wasn't Shutzstaffel the name of Hitler's elite guard, known as SS for short? For that matter.... He pulled out My Struggle. Right, the translation of Mein Kampf, and New Order had been another name for the Third Reich.

Miller obviously had an interest in subjects that had lost all relevancy. Come to think of it, he seemed to remember some of those anthropological studies on the shelves had been later thoroughly refuted by true scientists. Their only value now were as tasteless curiosities.

He turned away from the books. There was nothing of interest here. It was time to go home. Manners dictated he should find Miller and thank him for the party. He remembered seeing the man going through the garden. Maybe he was at the small lodge behind the gazebo.

Approaching the wooden construction, he saw that the lights were on and quite a number of people were there, around a table. The atmosphere didn't seem to be an extension of the party. He thought that perhaps a business matter had interrupted. If it were a business meeting, he didn't want to barge in. He stopped at the door to listen briefly. Yes, it definitely sounded like a business meeting, complete with calls to order. The civilities would have to wait.

He was about to leave when he heard his name being mentioned. Surprised, he hesitated. What had he to do with Miller's real estate business?

His mind was so geared to his own assumptions about the nature of the meeting that for a while the conversation didn't make sense to him, although he seemed to be the subject of it. For some reason he couldn't fathom, someone was questioning his reliability. Miller made a few comments, then the other voice spoke up again. It wasn't only his reliability in question, but Miller's estimation of his reliability. Don't tell me he wants to appoint me the Vice President of his company or something, Hutch thought with offbeat humor. But he didn't feel like laughing.

He felt plugged into the wrong frequency, unable to make sense of the chatter. The people were expressing themselves in almost military terms. What's going on here? What was it Miller was pronouncing him ready to recruit for? Why was Osgood now talking about their cause being too important and the mission too risky to reveal without further assurances?

"I agree," another voice joined in. "However primed you might think he is now, there's his past to consider. Let's not forget, he was partners with that," an unmistakable note of contempt crept into the voice, "Jew-boy for a long time."

Miller countered that one didn't have the freedom to choose his co-workers in a police force, but Hutch barely heard.

Everything suddenly made sense. This wasn't a real estate meeting, and that club didn't house a rifle enthusiasts group. With all their clean-cut images, their patriotic rhetoric and champion-of-the-right-way attitude, they were the reincarnation of the beast that had terrorized the earth. Neo-Nazis.

Once the initial fury died down, Hutch's reaction was the need to get away, put distance between himself and the rotten corpse that wouldn't stay buried. He crossed the yard and headed for his car, got in and sped away.

He didn't care where he drove. He noticed he kept taking his hands off the steering wheel to rub at them as if they were soiled beyond cleansing. He turned down a deserted road and found himself at the beach.

He got out of the car. There was an overwhelming need inside to do something, to have done something. There was nothing he could've done. He had no evidence of wrongdoing. For a minute, he thought of the arsenal at the club, but he'd bet his life all the armament would be legally documented and registered. This evil had never been a stupid one.

Jonathan Miller. Just another high school buddy: a familiar face at double dates, sporting events, study groups, beer parties. Just an all-American boy. Better than most, in fact. What one's parents would approve of, one of the `good' boys.

Why didn't people stay young, illusions intact, life simple?


An accurate enough term, actually. Except people made words obscene. Millions of human beings had been butchered because of words like those. Starsky's grandparents and parents had been among the lucky ones; they had left Poland before the holocaust had swept over them. It could have been otherwise, and the special man he had been privileged to call `friend' for years could never have existed, or could've vanished in the gas chambers or lye pits as an infant. A horrible vision came to his mind. He remembered all those mind-numbing photos, the legacy of the concentration camps. Born into an earlier generation, any of those starved, tortured, decomposing bodies could've belonged to his friend. He shuddered.

He felt ashamed that he hadn't done anything except run away. But what was there to do? He couldn't have even made the person who had uttered the words with such hate regret saying them. He was a cop.

At that thought things started to fall in place, startling him at first. You are a cop, damnit! So think like one. Calm down. Think it through.

Miller had obviously known he'd been in LA, and what he'd been doing for a long time. Driving him home that first night, he hadn't needed an address. He had known all the right things to say and do, as if he had a detailed knowledge of Hutch's life. Details that exceeded what `hometown gossip' could have supplied. Also, what was that truly incredible coincidence of one of Miller's friends running into Hutch at a bar the man normally wouldn't be caught dead in? At just the right time? Just happening to recognize Hutch from a glimpse on a TV screen? Had Hutch been under observation? Why? And why had they decided to make contact at this particular point of his life?

They need me for something, he realized, and they think I'm weary and disillusioned enough to fall for it. What?

It didn't matter what, only that they wanted it. They had sought him out when he was fed up with the force and tried to persuade him better things awaited elsewhere. They obviously wanted his knowledge and training for something that couldn't be had legally. Wasn't there talk of there being clandestine training centers for these latter-day Hitlers? Maybe something like that, maybe something else, something he could uncover, expose....

He'd find a plausible reason for his abrupt departure from the party, go back, and play their revolting games until they gave him enough rope to hang them. He was still a cop, and he wasn't helpless.

To have purpose again. It was exhilarating.

I'll get them, Starsky, he promised. I'll get them for you, if it's the last thing I do.