The Betrayal Chapter 2 snippet 2
Obviously a disaster had started in the lab because what had been a neat orderly facility was now a disaster. The lights, which had been steady outside, were flickering, giving it a Dante’s inferno-type feel. A shiver passed up Kate’s spine as she moved through the room.
“Ebola shouldn’t move this quickly, Kate,” Reynolds said softly the horror showing in the knife’s edge tone of her voice.
“I would tend to agree,” Kate said. “However, the researcher’s Albright had were mixing it some other virus to make it more deadly.”
“Any ideas at which one it was?” Reynolds asked.
“Not a clue,” Kate said sadly. “I’m afraid it was above me to understand what they were doing. All I know is how deadly it was.”
“How did you learn that, Kate?” Loving asked.
“Well,” Kate said as she stepped into a room where there was a body with a gun on the floor. “I had entered a lab and was captured. In a bind, I broke free from the security guards and tossed the vial and a man while diving into the airlock. Unfortunately for him, and for me, he dropped it after the airlock door sealed. I sat there and watched them all die…right before my eyes. Well, well, well, what do we have here?”
She came to a stop before a glass that separated the lab from the medical bay. A coating of blood an tissue was on the glass, a bullet hole unmistakable. That explained it, she mused as she knelt to look at the man with the gun. He must have known when the virus got loose and shot himself. Poor dumb bastard was too close to the window, though, and the bullet allowed the virus to escape.
“Looks like we know how the virus escaped,” Kate sighed as she stood back up. “What we don’t know if how it broke out in here.”
Was it possible, she wondered, that the computer would have recorded the final moments in the lab? It was a gamble but it was certainly worth a shot. Without any knowledge of what happened, it would be nearly impossible for her to make sense of what happened.
Before disaster struck, she thought with a shiver.
“Maybe the log will have an answer,” Reynolds said as she went to sit down before a terminal.
“I was already thinking that,” Kate said as she stopped the doctor from taking the seat. “I’m going to try accessing it; the codes might still be Intelligence.”
“You’re the boss, Kate,”
Making herself comfortable at the computer, her eyes scanned the area around the keyboard. It couldn’t be this easy, she grumbled to herself, could it? No, it would be, she reminded herself, because if there was one thing that intelligence lacked, it was common sense.
As far as they are concerned, Kate sighed. Common sense is a bad thing!
The first attempt to access the database came back denied, which elicited a growl from her. She made a second attempt with no success, as a thought tickled her mind for the thousandth time. It stood to reason, she reminded herself, that if this was a secret biological weapons vessel, then the coding would have to be Intelligence in nature. The only question would be: did Johansson change the algorithms when he took command?
Which is something he should have done right away when he took command, she told herself as she entered the last code base she knew. That’s simple operations 101…when someone leaves who has the code: you change.
She didn’t know whether to laugh or cry when the computer accepted her code. On one hand relief filled her body that her code worked in the first place. However, that was followed by a wave of bitter disappointment. Rear Admiral Johansson should have changed the algorithms when he accepted command. Who the hell knew how many people knew the code now, she raged behind her calm exterior.
This in one thing that I’m going to shove up his ass and break off, she thought with a sigh.
“XO,” Kate said as she activated her com unit. “I’m sending you a algorithm to the computer codes. They should work.”
“Thank you, Skipper,” he said. “Should I bother asking how you broke the codes?”
“Let’s just say that Intelligence is kind of lacking in that department,” she said, a bitter chuckle filling the air.
“Understood,” Paul said. “If we have any problems I’ll call. XO, out.”
Looking at her two compatriots, she let out a sad sigh. Without having to say a word, they were able to read her expression like a book. If intelligence codes were being used, it said, just how deep in the Government did the cover-up go? Who knew about this, and how much did they know?
“Well I think I answered the question about how much involvement the government had in all this,” Kate muttered.
She stepped out of the way, motioning to Reynolds to sit at the computer. The doctor was the best qualified to learn what was in the medical files. Closing her eyes, Kate took a deep breath, letting her mind wander while Reynolds worked.
Instead of a relaxing day-dream, random images starting to spill through her mind’s eye without warning. Whining, she saw the forests of Ireland surrounding her, while the sound of Marine weaponry fired off around her. A cry escaped her lips as she felt a bullet strike her cybernetic arm and bounce off.
Opening her eyes wide, she gasped as she felt Loving’s hand on her shoulder. Reacting on instinct, her other arm moved up to make a killing blow when she realized where she was. With a gasp, she stopped the move as voices broke through the haze in her head.
A cry of fear and confusion escaped her lips as she dropped her hands to her side. The faceplate of her suit was nearly fogged over from her racing vision. Just what the hell happened, she wondered, and what was going on?
“Take a seat, Kate,” Loving said as she and Reynolds helped Kate into a seat. Each of them kept a wary eye out for sudden movements.
“Take deep, shallow breaths and calm down.”
“Jennifer,” Kate croaked. “What happened on Ireland?”
“What do you mean, what happened?” Jennifer said. “You were there.”
“I keep seeing M1A1 sniper rifles,” Kate’s voice was small and weak in the speakers. It sounded to the both of them like her strength had been sapped right from her body. “And I don’t ever remember seeing any of them.”
“You’re kidding right?” Jennifer said with wide eyes. How could she not remember something so well known? That had been one of the biggest items covered up about the entire Ireland affair!
After several minutes, she had her breath under control and her faceplate cleared out. She sat there for long moments in silence, staring at the floor. There had to be an answer to this, she mused. She had lived everything she remembered, so it had to be true! Didn’t it? It wasn’t possible to steal someone’s memories, was it?
“I don’t remember any being there,” Kate said in a simple, matter-of-fact tone.
“Kate,” Jennifer said. “I don’t know what you’re trying to pull, but there were two different snipers in that compound. Both of them were armed with the latest sniper rifles.”
“I’m telling you, Jennifer, I don’t remember any of that,” Kate groaned. “Zero recollection at all.”
“Kate,” Reynolds said with great concern. “Are you feeling well?”
Before she could speak, more images flashed through her mind. Overloading her senses, she screamed as she faded into unconsciousness. Before anyone could react, her body fell to the floor with a thud.
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