"Running with the Devil" Chapter 1
just getting some random thoughts and scenes off my chest...feel free to comment:
And how is my life any different now then it was on Necko? She thought. I was a killer then and I’m a killer now.
“Lieutenant,” the Flight Commander said.
“We’re over the target.”
“Thank you, Major,” Kate said, picking up her pack and placing it on her back.
“We can stay in the area to provide com support if you would like,” he said.
“No,” Kate said. “I want you to clear out and leave this to me. It would be too easy for someone down there to pick up your heat signature if they have a scanner. I appreciate the thought though.”
The commander pushed a button and the cabin door slid open. A rush of air filled the compartment and it buffeted the commander’s flight suit. Kate stepped over to the edge and looked down at the roof below while he lowered a rope. She fastened a belt around her hips and she clipped the rope into an eyelet.
“Good luck, Lieutenant,” the commander said.
“Thank you,” Kate said, opening and closing her gloved hands.
She took the rope in her hands and stepped out of the transport. The sound of the rope sliding through her gloves was overshadowed by the wind. Her raven hair blew in all directions, and she cursed under her breath.
For once couldn’t it do what I want it to do? She wondered. I don’t want to cut it!
Kate felt her heart start to pound while she repalled. While basic training had taught everyone how to drop from a transport it was a far cry different from doing it on a real mission. If one screwed up their drop on Arlington, you landed on a force field that kept you from hitting the ground, but a screw up here meant one long fall…
Not that the fall would hurt me, Kate thought. Not with a body almost totally cybernetic now.
She landed on the roof and unclipped herself from the rope. The transport retracted the rope and flew away. Thanks to modern military technology, the craft would be able to circle miles away and still eavesdrop on the deal she came to stop.
Dropping to a knee, she pulled the backpack off her shoulders. Inside she had packed a pistol and rope for rapelling. The meeting had been underway for several minutes and if she had to move rapidly the rope would be useful.
“Can you hear me, Commander?” she asked, standing up.
“Loud and clear, Lieutenant,”
“Can you feed your recordings of the meeting, please?”
“On their way,”
Fleet Intelligence had weaponry in its arsenal that would make most of the regular Fleet jealous. They were rumored to have thermal camouflage but no one from Command had been able to confirm or deny it. It was Kate’s opinion that most of the people wanting to know the truth couldn’t have handled it if told anyway.
She reached up and touched a small button on the neck of her jumpsuit and she disappeared from sight. The rumors about Intelligence having thermal camouflage were true and they had been using it for years. In fact, its design was one of the items stolen by the tech she had been sent to stop.
The design of the suits was absurdly simple and it was surprising to Fleet Intelligence that no one else had thought of it. Since fusion reactors powered bionics, they had plenty of surplus energy that wasn’t used 99% of the times. Camouflage suits rectified that problem by tapping into the wearer’s cybernetics and using it to power an invisibility field. By generating a small magnetic field around the wearer, they twisted light to make him or her invisible to the naked eye. The genius of the suits was that the magnetic fields were something that civilian, and most military, security systems couldn’t detect.
“Good evening gentlemen,”
That voice doesn’t register in my CPU, she thought with a frown. Could it be possible that the intel is wrong?
“Do you have what we want?” a second man asked.
Kate perked up while she listening to the meeting. The wind blew her hair in front of her face and she wiped it away with an annoyed sigh. She had to let the meeting progress to the point that it was obvious the tech was trying to sell Fleet secrets. Then, if everything went the way it should, she could arrest the tech and not have to kill him.
God help me if I have to kill again, she thought. I don’t want to…but if I don’t, they’ll kill me instead!
“I have it all right here,” the first man said.
“Ready to download if you have the money.”
“Is this sufficient?”
Damn! Kate thought. They’re moving quicker then I expected!
“Lieutenant!” the transport’s commander said. “We’re picking up police entering the building.”
“What the hell!” Kate exclaimed. “Why are they here?”
“The tactical net was encrypted but I was able to break it,” the commander said. “It appears they’re after the tech too.”
“This isn’t good,” Kate said, tying the rope around a steel beam. “If they get their hands on him, then our secrets can be downloaded by them. ****!”
“What are you going to do about it, Lieutenant?”
“Something that is both stupid and foolhardy I’m afraid,” Kate said, clicking the rope into her eyelet again.
“I guess it’s too late to try to talk you out of it then,” he said. “So, good luck.”
“Thank you,” she said.
A quick tug on the rope was enough to tell her it was tied tight to the beam. She pulled the slid back and chambered the first round in her Kimber .45. This was something that would be incredibly stupid to try if desperation wasn’t forcing her to do so.
My life has always been full of adventure and surprises, she thought. Why would this be any different?
Kate ran towards the edge of the roof and the leapt out into the darkness.
Technician First Class Mel James paced the room anxiously. What was taking the Sagnar so long? Fleet had to know of his theft by now which meant the clock was ticking.
Don’t they understand that Intelligence will be after me? James thought. They’re willing to do anything to arrest me!
James chewed on his fingernails while he contemplated the situation he was in. Two months ago he was just a normal low-level technician working on ship and weapons design then he met her. A picture of beauty he had fallen head-over-heels for her. Her name was Emily Benson and it was after she seduced him that he learned she was an agent for Sagnar’s MI6 Intelligence agency.
She had been sent to Earth to steal Fleet’s latest designs and it hadn’t taken long for her to find a mark. A loner with no friends, he had been the easiest of marks for Benson. Once he had learned what Benson wanted he had been furious but there was nothing he could do about it.
I’ve been sleeping with an enemy agent, he thought. And no one is going to believe my story! They’ll arrest me just like they will her! Why did I do it?
The door to the room opened and three men stepped inside. Closing the door behind them, they approached him. Two of the men immediately stood out as security and James could see the slight bulge of pistols under their sport coats. The third man wore an expensive suit and carried a briefcase in his hand.
Thank God, James thought. They better have my money or the deal’s off!
“Good evening, gentlemen,” James said.
“Do you have what we want?” the man with the briefcase said.
“I have it all right here,” James said, tapping his temple. “Ready to download if you have the money.”
The man sat the briefcase down on a coffee table and opened it up. James’ eyes grew wide as he saw the stacks of Alliance credits inside. There was more then enough for him to get off Earth and start a new life somewhere else!
Talk about hitting the jackpot, James thought.
“Is this sufficient?”
“I would say we have a deal,” James said.
“Good,” the man said. “All I need to do is to download-“
It was at that moment that all hell broke loose. Explosives blew the door to the room apart and James protected his head from the flying wood. Before he had a chance to react any further, armed officers stormed the room with rifles in their hand. James could tell from the light combat armor they wore that the men were police officers and he relaxed.
If worse comes to worse, he thought. I can request asylum with the Sagnar!
A man with Sergeant’s strips on his armor stepped forwards and the officers behind him never relaxed their aim. James could see the sneer on the Sergeant’s while he approached.
“Mel James,” The Sergeant said. “You’re under arrest for the theft of state secrets. You gentlemen are under arrest for trying to purchase Alliance secrets.”
“I’m afraid you can’t arrest any of us,” the man with the briefcase said. “The three of us have diplomatic immunity. Furthermore, Mr. James has requested asylum in our peaceful Federation.”
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