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Chasing Ghosts

Title: Chasing Ghosts 12/?

Author: veiledndarkness

Rating: R

Pairing: Implied previous Bobby/Jack, Max/Jack

Summary: Not all those who wander are lost.

Disclaimer: Not mine, no harm intended, and no profit made

Crossover between Four Brothers/Max Payne

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11


If Max had slept at all, Jack didn’t see any signs of it. He woke to the sound of the Max’s footsteps in the kitchen, making coffee, he assumed. Jack resisted the urge to bury his head back under the blankets and demand a few more hours of sleep. He hadn’t slept well, his dreams fraught with fears and the feeling of being chased, of shadows that wanted to hurt him and the longing for anything familiar from home.

He rubbed a hand over his eyes, blinking away the fuzziness of a poor rest. The smell of coffee was a powerful lure, he knew. Jack crept out of the blankets and shivered in the cool morning air. Max seemed to have an aversion to properly heating the apartment, leaving Jack to scramble to put his warmest clothes on each day.

With a quick sigh, Jack tugged on his heaviest sweatshirt and pulled the hood over his hair, too tired to do anything with styling it right then. He made his way to the kitchen and accepted the mug that Max held out for him. He mumbled something in the vicinity of ‘thank you’ and sat on the kitchen stool, hunched over as he drank the much needed coffee.

Max looked like he’d spent the night pacing, Jack decided. Though he’d changed into fresh clothes, the bags under his eyes told another story. He wore one of his black turtlenecks, his long coat and gun harness under it, ready to go. An empty coffee mug sat by his hand, the folder from Michelle’s file in front of him. He nodded at Jack, an undercurrent of energy flowing through him.

“Mona contacted me.”

Jack blinked a few times. “When was that? I didn’t even hear the phone.”

“You were out cold,” Max tapped his fingers on the file folder, watching Jack closely.

“Ok,” Jack took a gulp of his coffee and swallowed it. He had a feeling that he didn’t want to know what Mona had to say. “And…?”

“She spoke with her contact last night. She’ll be meeting up with me later.”

Jack mentally rolled his eyes. He held no doubts that it would be a meeting that didn’t involve him. “That’s it? We sit here and wait?”


Somehow that didn’t feel any better. Jack finished the rest of his coffee, suddenly uncomfortable with the look Max wore. “So what do you got planned then?”

“I’m goin’ to see Michelle’s supervisor, Jason Colvin. He knows something,” Max said with almost a feverish intent to his words. “I know he does. He has to.”

“How can you be so sure?”

“Because I am,” Max snapped at him. “Because I have to be, because no one else out there wants to tell me why the fuck my wife was murdered and why someone seems intent on wiping me and everyone I ever loved out of my life. Ok, Jack? Is that clear enough?”

Jack winced and nodded silently. He toyed with his coffee cup and pushed it off to the side. He stood up and headed for the doorway of the kitchen. “Does this Colvin guy still work at Aesir?”

“Yeah, he’s on the directory.” Max frowned at him. “What’re you doing?”

“We’re going to see him, aren’t we?”

“Jack…” Max sighed. “I can’t bring you with me on this.”

“Why the hell not?”

“This is too dangerous.”

“What exactly do you have planned that’s so dangerous, Max? You said you were going to talk to him.”

Max wouldn’t meet his eyes and with that, Jack felt fear settle in his stomach.

“Max…whatever you’re thinking of doin’ to him…”

“This is why I can’t bring you along. I don’t want anything happening to you.”

Jack scoffed. “Oh yeah, and I’m so safe here, aren’t I?”

Max tightened his mouth, an unhappy look to his face. “Jack, please don’t make things difficult.”

“Fuck you if you think I’m going to sit around here by myself. Last time I tried that, I ended up nearly bleeding out.” Jack crossed his arms, daring him to disagree.

Max sighed heavily. “Damn it…”


Jack sat in one of the cushy chairs, surprised by how comfy the seat was. But as comfy as his back currently was, he was drumming his fingers nervously on the arms of the chair. Max seemed unable to sit still, that undercurrent of energy thrumming loud and clear. He paced around the office, moving from one side to the other. He ended up in front of several large black and white photos of a woman and a young girl. The girl was smiling into the camera, a young unaffected smile of happiness.

The receptionist that had let them into Jason Colvin’s office seemed vaguely unconcerned at the idea of a detective wanting to speak with him as soon as he got in, but she’d given Jack an extra look or two of confusion. Jack sighed under his breath. Max was freaking him out.

The door finally opened behind them and Jack turned his head a little, a man coming into his view. He wore a business suit and a wet overcoat that was still dripping onto the tiled floor. In one hand he carried a wrinkled envelope of papers. His face was tight with worry. He darted confused eyes at Jack, then at Max’s back.

“This your daughter?” was all Max said when he heard the door close behind Jason Colvin.

“Yes…” Jason hesitated, glancing at Jack once more as if he couldn’t fathom why someone like him was in his office, or to that effect, why there was a detective standing behind his desk, intently staring at his personal photographs. “She’s three years old.”

“She’s beautiful,” Max said softly.

“Is…is there something I can help you with, Detective?”

Max shook his head slowly. “I don’t know yet…”

“Maybe if you told me what this was about?” Jason took several steps closer to Max, looking all the more confused. “I’m not sure I understand…”

“It’s about a homicide. Multiple homicides, actually,” Max continued to stare at the photographs.

Jason’s throat bobbed and he gestured with the envelope a little. “I uh…I didn’t get your name.”

“Max Payne.” He turned then, finally looking at the slightly younger man.

The look on his face scared the hell out of Jack. He tensed up, feeling his chest twinge.

Jason gave him a tentative smile. “I,” he cleared his throat. “I’m sorry, I didn’t recognize you.”

“That’s ok,” Max walked around the desk, closer to Jason then. “What can you tell me about what Michelle was working on when she died? You were her supervisor then, right?”

Jason exhaled and gestured again, his confusion beginning to seem like an act. Jack sat up a little in the chair, tucking his thumbs under his fingers. Max came around the corner of the desk and sat on it, looking scarily calm for a moment.

“I, I think it was…hmm, about thirteen different projects, nothing out of the ordinary really for her focus of work.”

Max said nothing. The silence that fell made the hairs on Jack’s neck stand up.

Jason stepped closer to the desk. “It’s hard to remember all the um, details from so long ago.”

“Isn’t that something that can be looked up?” Max stepped out of the way as Jason walked over to the coat stand. He took his wet coat off and hung it up, avoiding the stares from Max.

“I don’t know how I would, it’s um…not something we keep…” he trailed off as Max suddenly walked over to the door and locked it, the lock slamming shut eerily loud.

“That, uh, far back, we don’t keep all the paperwork, it’s a filing issue,” he stammered.

“Funny thing is I don’t know that I believe you,” Max said in an almost friendly tone. “There’s just no trace of her at all? Nothing left? How unusual…”

“We can’t save everything…” Jason gestured once more, in the vicinity of his phone. Sweat had gathered on his forehead and his hand was shaking a little. “It’s nothing personal.”

“Do you need to make a call?”

“You know, um, maybe I should,” Jason grabbed the phone and pressed one of his speed dials.

Max moved with a quickness that caught even Jack off guard. He came around the side of the desk and yanked the phone from Jason’s hand as Jason tried to speak to his receptionist. He smashed the phone against the wall, the receiver still hanging from Jason’s hand.

Jason stared at him, his eyes too wide, fear seeping from him.

“What do you know?” Max demanded.

“Wait…” was all Jason got out before Max punched him, sending him reeling to the floor.

Jack froze in his chair, his chest hitching. “Oh fuck…”

A knock sounded on the door, the receptionist’s voice coming through the wood panel.

“Mr. Colvin?”

Jason landed in his computer chair, clutching at his nose. He gasped with panic and pain.

“Why are you lying to me?” Max hissed.

“I’m not!” Jason shouted, blood flying from his nose when Max punched him again.

The knocking increased from outside the door. Jack struggled to get up, his heart pounding furiously hard. This was bad, oh this was so bad. He swallowed several times to get his throat working.

“Max, fuck Max, stop!”

Jason panted, crouching helplessly back in his chair, Max looming over him.

“Tell me what happened to Michelle.”

“I…I don’t know,” Jason gasped, both hands up in the air.

“Mr. Colvin, are you ok?” the receptionist shouted through the door.

“Jackie!” he shouted back, taking his eyes off Max.

Max backhanded him viciously, more blood flying through the air. Jack watched it land on the carpet in little red droplets, horrifically fascinated by the way it fell. He shuddered and forced himself to move from the chair and over to Max’s side, one slow step at a time. He didn’t like this, didn’t want any part of this…

“Are you alright?” she knocked harder on the door, struggling with the door knob.

Jason cried out, clutching at his face. Jack swallowed back bile at the look of pain on Jason’s face. Intimidating people with threats was one thing, but this…this was something else.

“What was she working on?” Max yelled.

“I don’t know! I-I was in a different department, in charge of a different project! It…It was a government contract,” Jason rambled helplessly.

“What did it have to do with Michelle?” Max widened his eyes, looking all the more enraged at the lack of info.

“I…I, she was just…” Jason sputtered as Max hit him again, crying out as he hit the floor.

“Max, for the love of God,” Jack begged. He pushed at Max’s arm, trying to yank him away from Jason. “They’re gonna call the fucking cops on you!”

Max pulled out his gun from his holster and removed the safety, pointing it at Jason’s knee. Jack’s hands were wet with cold sweat. He blinked several times to make sure he wasn’t dreaming. “Max…” he choked out. “Max, don’t!”

“Oh Jesus,” Jason whispered. “It…It was a military operation. It was something to make soldiers more aggressive…aggressive in combat. It, God, it was a disaster. It only worked on about one percent of the test group, it made them invincible.”

Max stared down at him, breathing hard himself.

“The rest of them, they suffered horrible hallucinations, devils, demons, you name it.” He rubbed a trembling hand at his face. “It literally drove them insane. The…The effects were uncontrollable. The stuff was so addictive, we couldn’t…couldn’t even guarantee the safety of our own scientists,” he said, near tears. “We had to shut it down. The test subjects would…would follow them home and kill them, just for an extra dose.”

“Is that what happened to Michelle?!” Max breathed at him furiously.


Max moved the gun and aimed it at Jason’s forehead. Jack darted looks at the door, at Max, at Jason and for a long moment, he felt like he might pass out. This was too much to watch. “Max…”

“What do you mean no? What happened to her?!”

“Jesus,” Jason choked, raising his hands to the side of his head. “Please…look, she didn’t even know it was coming for her. I will tell you what happened…”

“Mr. Colvin, I called security, they’re on their way!” Jackie shouted through the door.

“You gotta get me out of here, right now,” Jason said, lowering his hands a little.

“What are you talking about?”

“I will confess to everything, but you gotta get me to safety!”

“That’s not good enough; you tell me what happened to her now!”

“She was killed because of the drug!” Jason yelled, closing his eyes. He pointed blindly at his desk. “The envelope, it’s in there, bring it with us and I’ll explain. Please…you’ve got to protect me from them.”

Max seemed at a loss for words. “Who’re you talking about?”

“The man who killed your wife!”

Max darted a look at the envelope and nodded to Jack. “Get the envelope!” He grabbed Jason by the scruff of the neck and lifted him up, pushing him forward.

Jack snagged the envelope and stuffed it into his jacket sleeve, hurrying behind Max and the stumbling Jason Colvin. Max pushed Jason out of the office door, his gun still aimed at his head. A woman shrieked off to the side when the gun came into sight. People scrambled backwards and Jack tried to stay out of sight.

“Calm down!” Max shouted above the screams. He grabbed his badge from his belt clip and raised it over his head for them to see just as a SWAT team burst into the main room.

Jack felt his vision sway, all the guns aimed at them at once. The staff members dropped to the floor, more than a few screaming in terror. He had only a moment to look up before one of the gunmen pulled his trigger, sending a bullet straight into Jason Colvin’s chest.

The world seemed to stop, no sound even as Jason looked down at his shirt where a circle of blood bloomed. Max stared down at the wound, as if he couldn’t believe that the bullet hadn’t been aimed at him. He looked back up at the gunmen; his eyebrows raised sky high, fear starting to cover his face. Jason dropped to his knees, his eyes closing as he did so, dead before he hit the floor.

Max shoved Jack behind him with one hand, the other firing off bullets at their enemies. With deadly precision, Max shot six of the men down. He pushed Jack along, ordering him to keep his head down. Jack stumbled and tripped a little as Max shoved him into a corridor made up of filing cabinets, bullets ricocheting all around them.

Max turned and shot over his shoulder through a small partition, his face blank as he fired each bullet. Jack clasped his hands over his ears. It was all he could do to keep his breathing even. His blue eyes were panic filled and he could feel his sense of reality slipping, lost between the shootout of the year before and the firefight they were caught in now.

“Bobby,” he whispered through numb lips. “Bobby…Where are you…”

With seemingly calm movements, Max reloaded his gun, pushing the clip in. He raised his gun and aimed at the sprinkler on the ceiling, hitting it and setting it off. Water sprayed down from each sprinkler, causing more chaos amidst the bullets that were being fired every which way.

“Get up!” he yanked on Jack’s coat, pulling him upwards. “Run!”

Jack ran blindly, following the voice he trusted. Bobby wouldn’t steer him wrong, he managed to think, on the verge of having a full out panic attack. He could hear the guns, hear the bullets slamming into glass, and hear the footsteps of people chasing them. Glass sections of private offices exploded on their left side, Max shooting to his right while they ran.

Max let out a sharp gasp, a bullet grazing his left arm. He brought his arm up and fired a bullet directly into the knee of the shooter, sending him down howling in pain. Max then turned to face the door he was running towards and shot at the alarm code, firing several bullets into it, the pieces falling from the door uselessly.

With a shout, he slammed through the door, shoving Jack through him. Jack gasped frantically for air as Max grabbed the nearest metal shelf from the hall they were in and yanked it down, blocking it between the wall and the door separating them from the SWAT team. Jack held a hand to his side, grimacing in pain.

“Put your hands up!” Jim Bravura shouted as he came around the hallway corner and into the space they stood in. “You need to come in now, Max!”

“Just give me a chance!” Max held up the envelope. “Colvin knew what happened to Michelle.”

They both aimed at each other, muted shouts coming through the jammed door. The water from the sprinklers poured, more shouts came and Jack stood up, gripping his side tightly. God, how he wanted out of this…

“I talked to B.B. He told me about what happened to her an’ you, Max but you need to come in with me. This isn’t makin’ things any better and you know that and now you’re dragging this kid along with you!”

“You stay away from him! Jack, get over here!” Max demanded with a shake of his head.

Jack bit his lip and limped over to Max’s side, the ground beneath them rumbling. “This is so fucked up,” he said, his words lost in the roar of an explosion where the door had been.

The metal flew outwards, separating them from Bravura. Max wasted no words and simply grabbed a fistful of Jack’s coat, yanking him again as they ran down the hallway, escaping from the bullets that were echoing behind them.


“C’mon,” Max urged, leading Jack outside the building from one of the many stairwells. He held the door for him, looking about to ensure that they hadn’t been followed. Max looked wild to Jack, his eyes overly bright again, his lips pulled back from his teeth.

Jack collapsed against the concrete wall, struggling to keep his breathing even. His wounds from his attack ached and he couldn’t seem to stop shaking. “Max…Max, I can’t…this is too much!”

“Get up!” Max said through clenched teeth. “We don’t have much time; they’ll have men all over this fucking area in minutes.”

“Fuck you!” Jack shouted. He stood up, wobbling and pointed at Max, furious. “This, this was…what the hell, man? You can’t just do that! Even Bobby wouldn’t have done that, you idiot!”

“Yell at me later, for now, move!” Max growled, tucking his gun into his harness. He reached for Jack, only to have Jack throw his arm back.

“Don’t touch me,” Jack glared at him. “You’re seriously fucked in the head if you think we got any chance of comin’ out of this without a goddamned prison sentence.”

Max exhaled harshly, through gritted teeth. He swiped at the blood that seeped from the torn fabric of his leather jacket. “I’m finally on the right track to finding out the truth. I can’t back down now, Jack.”

“At what expense?!” Jack waved his hand at the building. “That man had a family; he had a daughter, Max! Do you hear me? A kid, a kid whose dad just died because of what you’re doing! You can’t do shit like that or you’re no better than the fuckers who took out your wife and your son!”

And right then, Jack felt the worst stab of guilt when he saw the look in Max’s eyes, the pain on his face. He sighed a little. “I…”

Max said nothing. He turned and started walking away, disappearing into the shadows of the nearest alleyway. Jack hesitated a second and then went after him, sirens wailing in the distance.



( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 3rd, 2012 04:32 pm (UTC)
Yeah, see say what you want about Bobby he had a loose sort of code that Jack could kinda trust and follow and if it looked like he was pushing the limits even try to influence. But Max Payne is pretty much a pure force of revenge. Btw, has anyone noticed that Mark Wahlberg barely ages at all? He still looks really young, even though he spends most of his film roles scowling.
Jan. 3rd, 2012 10:22 pm (UTC)
You can't see his scowl lines when he's scowling. It's when his face all smooths out that you can see. But no, he hasn't aged in a long time...
Jan. 7th, 2012 04:33 pm (UTC)
You're exactly right about Bobby. Even criminals have a code of conduct for certain things. Max Payne is unhinged and that's just following the storyline. I felt Max should have been a hell of a lot more sympathetic to someone like Jason Colvin, but yeah...there it was in the movie. o.O

And yeah, he really doesn't age, lol. He's looked pretty much the same for the last 8 years.
Jan. 3rd, 2012 10:21 pm (UTC)
Jack is making Max figure things out in his head and is making him thnk. Good!
Jan. 7th, 2012 04:31 pm (UTC)
Damn right, lol :)
Jan. 4th, 2012 06:34 pm (UTC)
This is so excellent, I love being away for a while and coming back to find a whole bunch all at once because I love it so much. There is so much going on with jack's confused love for bobby and misplaced love for max because jack is so easy and looking for acceptance
Jan. 7th, 2012 04:36 pm (UTC)
You're very right about that. Jack is one mixed up young man. He craves acceptance for sure. He wants Max simply because he feels that he's the closest he can get to Bobby himself and Max is in over his head with someone like Jack for sure.

And I'm glad you're enjoying all this :)
Jan. 4th, 2012 06:39 pm (UTC)
And new comment because my phone wouldn't let me keep going....

Then there is the rest of the story with the wtf is going on here and action and storyline the relationship they are forming that keeps puling it back together even though neither of these needed up men know what to do with this relationship really. Jack is hoping mac will tell him, like bobby would have. And max fell into it backwards and sideways and probably doesn't know what to do with a guy like jack
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )