A/N More Mike musing about what's going on. Putting the meta puzzle pieces into place and trying to figure out what Anson and Managment's real game was. Want to start at the beginning? Click here.
Eight years. His father died eight years before he got back to Miami.
Management and Anson played the long game longer than anyone else he's ever even heard of.
The worst part is he's not sure if he's grateful Anson killed the son of a bitch, or sorry he never got the chance to.
No, the worst part is not knowing if his father actually did want to say he was sorry, or if that's just Anson pulling his strings. Probably just pulling his strings. Frank Westen crying in his drink over a lost relationship with his son is something that Michael literally cannot imagine.
He pushes it aside, or tries to. He's been wandering about in a daze, trying to process this, or trying not to, and doing a piss poor job of looking like he's not affected by something.
Fi's saying something to him.
He half pays attention, trying to get his mind away from this, and is failing utterly.
She touches him. "What is it, Michael?"
He shakes his head. Part of him wants to tell her. Part of him is trying. But his words vanish, skitter away from him, hiding. He can't say this, not to her, not to anyone. Not yet.
He half smiles, and she knows something's up, but she also knows him well enough to know that smile means he can't or won't talk. She squeezes his hand, and they settle down for bed.
Anson pegged him eight years before he was burned. Before that. He would have had to have seen something, decided Michael was worth it. Then do the research, and do it long enough for his father to become suspicious. Ten years? Maybe. How long did Anson spend with his father? Did he actually spend any time with him? Was this just a lie?
Anson said Management was against choosing him. That could explain the down time. Anson started in on Michael, began getting his information, and Management nixed it. Then... eight years later changed his mind?
That doesn't feel right.
Eight years later Anson finally convinced him?
No, that's not right either.
There's something, just beyond his grasp. A piece of the puzzle. He closes his eyes, forces himself to relax and focus. Management didn't want him. Anson did. Eight years between killing his father and seeing his mother. Management ran the ops. Anson found the people.
It hits him hard enough that he sits bolt upright in bed.
"Michael?" He can hear the concern in Fi's voice.
He gets up quickly, and turns on the stereo. Fi's music pounds through the loft.
"Management vanished," he whispers to her.
"Anson said Management didn't want me for this."
"Anson told me he talked to my father. Talked to him a lot. Talked to him so much he got suspicious about what was going on. Anson killed my father." Fi inhales, ready to say something about that, but he keeps talking fast, not wanting to focus on that. "That was thirteen years ago, Fi. I didn't get burned for eight more years at that point. Because Management didn't want me. He knew Fi. He knew I'd destroy them. He could see that I'd kill this organization. Five years ago, I think Management decided he wanted out.
"That's why he vanished. That's why he finally agreed to me. He wanted to kill the monster he gave birth to. Think about it. At any time, when I was becoming too much trouble to be worth it, he could have had me killed, or stuck in prison. He had me in prison, and yet I still got out. No... This was intentional. Management wanted out. He wanted the organization dead. And he picked me to do it."
Fi thinks about that. "I like it. But, does that mean Anson's using you to rebuild? And if so, are you being used to just get him his resources, or is he grooming you to take Management's place? Does he need someone to run ops for him?"
"I think so. But it won't be me. I don't think he's crazy enough to try to blackmail me into running his organization. Even he knows there are lines I won't cross, and that I'll make his ops fail. No, he's using me to get into a position where he can find a new Management."
"So, knowing that, what can we do with it?"
"I don't know. Not yet. But I think this is important. I think this is the key to getting to him."