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Category Archives: Stream of Consciousness Saturday

Stream of Consciousness Sunday: The Accumulator, part thirty nine…

Today’s prompt for SoCS, supplied as usual by Linda G Hill, allows us to continue this story by following this rather unique instruction;

” “book title.” Take the title of the book you’re currently reading or the one sitting closest to you when you’re ready to write your SoCS post and base your post on the title only. I’m not asking for a book review or a synopsis, just whatever the title itself brings to mind. “


{Nearest book: The Dark Tower by Stephen King.}

Hmm, interesting…

The Accumulator, part thirty nine.

Scene: Outside the derelict factory. 

The shot opens with Patrick coming out of the door, slamming it behind him before walking quickly along the front of the building.

A bright moon casts sharply edged, impenetrable shadows and gives the looming outline of the industrial hulk a stark, forbidding appearance. We can see Patrick until he turns the corner, heading for where the van is parked, then he is swallowed by the blackness.

Cut to: the van. 

After a few seconds, we hear the crunch of footsteps on gravel and see Patrick emerging from the gloom; glancing cautiously around him, he opens the sliding door and reaches inside. He comes out holding a petrol can and a handful of rags, slides the door closed and walks around to the opposite side.

We see him unscrew the petrol cap and begin feeding one length of rag into the tank, pulling it out and inspecting it with a nod of satisfaction, then repeating the process with the rest. He pulls out the last one and leaves the bundle hanging down the side of the van, the dripping petrol already forming a puddle on the crumbling tarmac.

As Patrick bends to pick up the petrol can, there is a loud crash from somewhere above him. He takes a step away from the van and looks up in time to see a shimmering shaft of energy burst through the factory roof and a rain of debris clatters down the corrugated panels, narrowly missing him as it falls to the ground.

He drops the can and starts to run back the way he came and we watch him vanish into the shadows, hearing his receding footsteps as our POV slowly descends to ground level and the overturned petrol can, it’s escaping contents forming a widening pool in the moonlight.

Scene: Inside the factory.

We see one of the three fallen figures by the pillar start to rise and the camera moves in and follows Carlisle as he shakily regains his feet and staggers toward the slumped forms of Adam and Cathy. He is trying to lift Cathy’s body off Adam without looking at the gaping hole in her back, when the door opens and Patrick comes running across the echoing space towards them.

“What the hell happened..?”

Patrick stops and looks down at the bodies in horror.

“Are they…dead? I mean, are they both dead?”

There was no mistaking that hole for a flesh wound.

“That is what I am attempting to find out, if I could get a little help here..?”

Patrick helps Carlisle roll Cathy’s corpse off Adam and leans down to check for a pulse on his throat, just as Adam groans and his eyes flicker open.

“Hold on, don’t move.”

Patrick gets up and looks over at Cathy, her eyes staring sightlessly up through the hole in the roof. He goes over to her and bends down, gripping her wrist for a moment with his eyes closed, then grabs her under the arms and gently drags her back until her head is no longer in the circle of light.

Returning to Adam with a bleak expression, he kneels down next to him and places his hand on his forehead. Adam’s body jerks briefly, his eyes snap open and he gasps convulsively.

Patrick looks up at Carlisle, who nods and bends to help him lift Adam onto his feet. The camera follows close behind them as they move quickly, supporting the stumbling Adam between them until they reach the car, lower him into the back and jump into front seats. 

Carlisle guns the sputtering engine and drives over to a rusty steel roller door in the corner of the building. He jumps out and fumbles with a padlock at the base of the door, heaves it up with a screeching rattle and hurries back to the car, then drives around and pulls up next to the van.

“Gotta light?”

Patrick leans forward and rummages in the glove compartment, pulling out a cheap plastic lighter, which he hands to Carlisle.

“Be my guest.”

Carlisle steps out of the car next to the petrol can. He picks up the can and shakes it, then walks slowly away from the van, trailing a steady stream of petrol behind him until the can is empty. Walking back to the car, he drives forward and leans out of the open door with the lighter, striking it half a dozen times before a low, rippling blue wave of flame flowed swiftly away from them.

Carlisle slammed the door and floored the accelerator, sending the small car bouncing forward across the uneven concrete to the gate as Patrick turned in his seat and saw the river of fire reach the van. There was a moment when he thought nothing was going to happen, then the black outline of the van, briefly visible against the flickering light, was blown apart in a short but violent explosion and engulfed in a roaring ball of flame.

*************

To be continued (using next weeks prompt)…

#SoCS

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Stream of Consciousness Sunday: The Accumulator, part thirty eight…

Good morning/afternoon/evening wherever you are and welcome to today’s installment of SoCS, in association with Linda G Hill, who provides the inspiration to continue this story by leaving us the following prompt;

” “ick.” Find a word with “ick” in it or use it as a word itself. “

Okey dokey, let’s go…

The Accumulator, part thirty eight.

Scene: Inside the deserted factory.

The opening shot is of a door, just visible in the gloom. After a few seconds we hear the scrape of a key in the lock, the door opens and a powerful flashlight shines directly at the us, (artful lens flares glint dramatically) then the beam slowly sweeps left and right and the camera pans round to follow Carlisle as he crosses the empty expanse of concrete. He is followed by Adam, holding onto Cathy’s arm, her hands handcuffed behind her, while Patrick enters last, pulling the door closed behind him.

“I use this place for stashing motors before a job sometimes, there’s a roller door round the back big enough to get a fair sized van in here.”

Carlisle speaks over his shoulder as he leads the way to a small hatchback parked in the far corner, the scratched and dented vehicle as anonymous as any other cheap car in the harsh glare of the flashlight. Halfway across the floor, he stops next to one of the steel pillars supporting the roof.

“Ok, this’ll do, tie her to this. She can scream and shout as much as she likes in here, nobody’s going to hear her.”

“And you think you can just call The Department and tell them where I am and they’ll just come running, is that it?”

Even in the darkness, Cathy’s sneer is obvious.

“You must think you’re dealing with a bunch of amateurs like you, if you think they’re going to fall for that. They’ll more than likely blow the whole place up, just to be safe, then come in and poke around in the rubble to see if they got you.”

Patrick can’t bring himself to look at her and he speaks while staring at the floor

“You don’t place much faith in their loyalty to you, then, maybe they realise what a deceitful bitch you are?”

“Oh, darling Patrick, do grow up. You got taken for a ride, get over it, you’re not exactly a saint, yourself.”

“Ok, that’s enough, you don’t get a vote so shut your mouth. Adam, tie her to that bloody post and let’s get the fuck out of here.”

Carlisle turns to Patrick and places a hand on his shoulder, making him look up, shaking his head and sighing heavily.

“Right, we need the van torched, but not until we leave, can you go and set that up? We’ll meet you there with the car in a few minutes.”

Patrick glances once, briefly, at Cathy, opens his mouth as if to say something, then turns abruptly and walks back to the door, slamming it loudly behind him. 

Carlisle turns to her with a grin.

“What, no moving goodbye? Although I suppose you never were one for all that icky romantic stuff, were you? Must have been hard, pretending to have emotions for all those years, hahaha. No, I mean, poor bloke and all that, you have to feel sorry for him, but he’s best rid of you, so he’ll get over it.”

“And now what, you kill me, now that you’ve spared his feelings?”

“What possible good would that do? We want you to be able to lead them to us, don’t we?”

“I won’t do anything to help you, you fucking…dinosaur!

“Oh, I’m hurt, I would have thought “role model” or “inspiration” would be more apposite, but never mind, I’ll get over it, too.”

Carlisle takes the handcuff keys from his pocket.

“Put her against the pillar we’ll cuff her hands behind it, not even she’s going to get out of that.”

He grabs Cathy’s arm and roughly turns her around so he can unlock the cuffs, making her grimace in pain.

“Hey! Be careful, you nearly dislocated my wrist.”

“Oh we don’t want that, you might be able to wriggle out of them, we’ll have to make sure we do them up tight.”

“Fuck you, Carlisle.”

Still holding her cuffed hands behind her and speaking straight into her ear, he says;

“Don’t worry, you won’t be here long, the police will be bored at this time of night and an exploding vehicle is bound to get someone’s attention pretty quickly.”

“What do you mean, the police?” 

For the first time, Cathy sounded less sure of herself.

“Oh, didn’t I mention that? Yeah, we’re going to call in an anonymous tip that there’s been a violent confrontation down here and sounds of a woman screaming, it might even include a description of the van, just to be sure they get the message.”

Adam interrupts, impatiently glancing at the glowing dial of his watch.

“What do you mean by get the message, what message?”

“She knows what I mean,…don’t you?”

He looks at Cathy, who glares back at him but says nothing.

“The Department will be monitoring police communications closely, it’s how they obtain much of their grass roots intelligence. Saves them a fortune, apparently. They will try to get a team here as fast as possible, I doubt they’ll suspect a trap if they think the tip is called in by a member of the public, but even if the coppers get here first, The Department can still get to her inside.”

“How does that help us?”

“Because the coppers already want her for assisting in the escape of you and Patrick, plus whatever other “terrorism” charges they’ve cooked up in the meantime, so she’s going to need to cut a deal with them; meaning she’ll have to lead them to us or spend a few extra years in jail. But, if The Department get hold of her, who think she might have gone rogue anyway, they won’t trust her if she says she doesn’t know where we are and they’ll employ some ingenious interrogation techniques, just to make sure she’s not lying.”

Adam nodded approvingly.

“Sounds like you have this all planned out.”

Carlisle looks down to unlock the cuffs as he speaks, fumbling to keep hold of the flashlight.

“Always think two steps ahead, that’s the secret…”

The second her hands are free, Cathy throws her head back violently, catching Carlisle full in the face as he looks up and he staggers back, blood streaming from a broken nose. Shadows loom wildly as the flashlight hits the floor and Carlisle falls to his knees, swaying and shaking his head like a punch-drunk boxer.

Then, before Adam can react, she charges at him; with the one free bracelet of the handcuffs wrapped around her hand like a knuckle-duster, she swings and lands a heavy punch, splitting his lip and smashing his front teeth. 

Adam stumbles back under the force of the blow, but as he falls, manages to grab her wrist with one flailing hand and Cathy crashes down on top of him, his head striking the concrete with a hollow thud. 

Blackness threatens to engulf him and a painful ringing in his ears intensifies as he feels his consciousness fading, so Adam summons the last of his strength and places his hand on Cathy’s chest as she struggles to stand up.

Now the director gives us a shot of Cathy from Adam’s POV, silhouetted against the light from the fallen flashlight, looking straight down into his face. She looks down at his hand, then back up, her eyes widening as she realises, too late, what he is doing.

Then the shot changes, so we see them from the side, as Adam unleashes a pulse of lethal energy into Cathy as she leans over him.

We see a brief, blinding light glowing between the two interlocked figures, then a shimmering, translucent beam bursts from Cathy’s back and a split second later a jagged hole is blown in the roof and a shaft of moonlight stabs down through the darkness, picking out the gory tableau below.
*************

To be continued (using next weeks week’s prompt)…

#SoCS

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Stream of Consciousness Sunday: The Accumulator, part thirty seven…

Welcome back to this story, continued in the usual SoCS way by using the prompt that Dan Antion (sitting in for Linda G Hill this week) left us for inspiration;

” “ooooh, aaaah,”. Use it as a phrase, or break it apart. And since I love bonus points, bonus points if you somehow manage to start and end with all or part. “

Thanks, Dan, that’s very helpful…

The Accumulator, part thirty seven.

Scene: Interior of the black van. 

Patrick is driving, with Adam beside him in the front, while Carlisle is seated behind Patrick, gun trained on Cathy, who is handcuffed to the bench opposite.

“Aaahh, isn’t this nice; quite the reversal of fortune, wouldn’t you say? The tables seem to have turned somewhat, since our last little road trip.”

Carlisle grins at Cathy with no humour at all and is rewarded with a look that should have melted him on the spot, but she doesn’t say a word.

Patrick looks at Carlisle in the rear view mirror and tries to keep the anger from his voice when he speaks.

“So, tell me again why you’re so convinced she’s a Department agent.”

Carlisle doesn’t get a chance to reply, Cathy leans forward and shouts over the sound of the engine.

“Don’t listen to him, he’s just trying to…”

“I told you once, shut your mouth.”

Carlisle reaches over in a matter of fact way and slaps Cathy once across the face, not hard, but hard enough to silence her

“Ok, there’s no need for that.”

“Oh, I think there’s every need for it, but you’re the boss. For now, anyway.”

Adam casually leans back and waves his hand at Carlisle, who is instantly slammed back against the side of the van with a loud bang, held there for a few seconds and then released. He slumps forward, breathing heavily, then looks up at Adam with an evil expression as he pushes himself up into a sitting position and grabs the gun from the seat next to him.

Adam looks unconcerned but irritated and turns back to watch the moonlit road rolling past outside as he says;

“Just tell the story and let’s do without all the strongarm stuff, shall we?”

Carlisle rubs the back of his own head where it had made contact with the van and scowls at the back of Adam’s, but says no more about it and returns to covering Cathy with the gun as he speaks.

“I don’t know why it never occurred to me when I first saw the file, maybe because she was blond back then, but once I saw her in the black-ops gear, it clicked. Funny the things that trigger your memory, isn’t it? 

Anyway, I first bumped into ‘Cathy’ here – she called herself something else back then, I forget what – about fifteen years ago, on a job for your friend, Felix Braithwaite.
You’ve looked after yourself, I’ll give you that,” he winks at Cathy, “I bet she’s older than you think she is, but then I expect that was the idea; the innocent little nurse, helping you escape the clutches of the evil doctor. And you certainly fell for it, didn’t you?”

“But…why? I don’t understand, why on Earth would The Department want me to escape in the first place?”

“So they could field test you, of course.”

“What do you mean, “field test”?”

“Well, they obviously needed to find out what you were capable of, out in the real world.
I mean, I’m no expert, I didn’t even know what they were doing with you or their other guinea pigs, but that’s their standard procedure; when they think an asset is ready to go live, they’ll send them on a field trip, out into the community, so to speak. They would usually monitor progress very closely, but you rather put the cat among the pigeons when you took out Endicott and his goons, ooohhh, they didn’t like that at all, so that’s where your little friend came in.”

Carlisle looks at Cathy with something like professional respect.

“I’ve got to say, I’m impressed with your ability to improvise, but you should have got him under control before he got out of the country. That’s what sealed your fate, they thought you’d gone native on them and you were on the shit-list from then onwards, I’m afraid. Still, you had a good run, up until now.”

“I don’t answer to you, I don’t care who you think you are, you’re just as fucked as the rest of us.”

“That’s an opinion, certainly, but I don’t think it’s set in stone just yet.”

Then Adam interrupts from the passenger seat.

“Is this the place?”

Carlisle peers between the seats and sees they are approaching a slip road that leads off the motorway, the familiar shape of derelict buildings ahead of them, silhouetted against the skyline.

“That’s it, turn off here and take the second road on the left, it’s about a mile and a half.”

The last few minutes of the drive are made in silence, the van finally bumping over the rough surface of an unmade road and turning in through the sagging, rusted gates of a deserted factory. 

Patrick pulls up in the shadows at the side of the building and switches off the engine.

“Ok, what now?”

Carlisle stands up and slides open the side door of the van.

“Now, we go inside.”

************

To be continued (using next week’s prompt {which can now be found HERE})…

#SoCS

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Stream of Consciousness Sunday: The Accumulator, part thirty six…

Here we are again, another Sunday, another SoCS post, finding out what happens next in this story, using the prompt left for us by Linda G Hill;

” “rain/rein/reign.” Use one, use them all, use them any way you’d like. “

Ok then, let’s see what we can do…

The Accumulator, part thirty six.

Scene: A motorway services restaurant at night. It is an hour ago.

Patrick, Adam, Cathy and Carlisle are sitting at the only occupied table and a single bored teenager stares fixedly at his phone behind the counter. Nondescript muzak plays quietly from hidden speakers, unsuccessfully competing with the sound of rain being driven against the windows by heavily gusting wind that has sprung up outside.

Our POV drifts across the room, arriving just as Cathy gets up from the table.

“I’m going to find the little girls’ room, I want to freshen up.”

“I’ll come with you, I need to stretch my legs anyway.”

Carlisle drains his coffee and stands up, pushing in his chair and gesturing for Cathy to go ahead of him as she walks round the table.

“Nice to see you still have some social graces left.”

Carlisle smiles tightly, nods to Patrick and Adam, then follows Cathy out of the restaurant and into the main concourse, where she heads for the far end of the building, next to the expanse of plate glass windows and automatic doors which lead out into the car park.

He slows his pace, allowing her to reach the door marked Ladies and go inside, before he ducks behind a vending machine next to the door of the gents’ toilet and waits.

He doesn’t have to wait long before the door reopens and Cathy comes out. She looks around, then takes two quick steps and opens the other door, reaching into her pocket as she slips inside.

After a few seconds, Carlisle moves from his hiding place, checks that he isn’t being watched and follows her.

*****

Scene: The restaurant table. Patrick is trying to placate an irate Adam.

“Calm down, for goodness sake. It’s not like he can go anywhere, is it?”

“No, but you’re putting too much bloody faith in him, letting him wander off like that, you should keep him on a tighter rein.”

“He’ll be fine and anyway, he can keep an eye on Cathy for us.”

“Hmm, seems to me that she should be the one keeping an eye on him, but you obviously know best.”

“Look, they weren’t coming to save Carlisle when they stormed the house, you know that, right?”

Patrick looks for some recognition from Adam, but he stares back at him blankly. He sighs and goes on.

“They were there to mop up his mess and to tidy up any inconvenient loose ends, like us and him. He’s just as deep in the shit as the rest of us, so it isn’t in his interest to drop us in it any further, he’ll only get pulled down with us.”

Adam didn’t look convinced, but he shrugged and changed the subject nonetheless.

“So where do we go from here, we can’t just keep running indefinitely?”

“I’ve been thinking about that and I think our only chance is to go public with what The Department has been doing; the experiments, the murders, the abductions, it all has to come out in the open, so we are no longer a threat to them.”

“Hahaha, don’t be so bloody naïve, you don’t really think we’ll be allowed to get within a hundred yards of a journalist or a tv studio, do you?”

“We won’t have to, not if we can get them to come to us.”

“And just how do you propose to do that, ring the CrimeStoppers hotline?”

Patrick was about to reply when he was stopped by the sound of Carlisle’s voice from behind him.

“Not such a bad idea, how about a missing persons report?”

They turned to see Carlisle, holding Cathy tightly by one arm, a livid red mark on her face and a look of fury in her eyes.

“Gentlemen, I think we may have a problem. On the bright side, I think we may also have a solution.”

*****

The scene flashes back to a close-up of Cathy in the toilet, a flash of movement is just visible behind her and we see her spin round…

Too late.

She turns to find the tip of Carlisle’s razor sharp hunting knife about half an inch from her left eye and freezes in shock.

“Looking for me?”

Carlisle, receiving no answer, laughs and continues in a cheerful voice

“Hahaha, the look on your face is priceless, you should see yourself. Didn’t know I’d recognised you, did you? Or had you just worked it out? Doesn’t matter now, anyway, I’ve got you bang to rights, as they say.”

Still she says nothing, just stares at him, hardly breathing, waiting.

He leans forward and carefully takes the gun from her hand. Then, and only then, he lowers the knife and is about to say something else but doesn’t get the chance, because that’s when she makes a desperate lunge for his throat with her bare hands.

It’s a token effort and she knows it, she’s off balance and he has all the advantages, but she’s so angry at herself for getting played like that, she can’t stop herself from trying.

Carlisle looks surprised for a split second, then decades of survival kicks in and he takes one quick step back and swings the hand holding her gun in a sharp arc, all in one smooth movement. The butt of the pistol connects solidly with the side of her face and Cathy goes down hard on the tiled floor.

Don’t do that again.”

“Fuck you, Carlisle”

“Ah, the old Department spirit finally surfaces, I didn’t think it’d be long before we saw your true colours. So, how were you going to explain my unfortunate demise to your boyfriend and his fellow medical oddity, was I going to assault you?”

“Something like that, yes.”

“Well, instead, why don’t you and I go and see what lover boy thinks about you betraying him all these years. And then, I think I’ve got a use for you.”

*************

To be continued (using next week’s prompt {which can now be found HERE})…

#SoCS

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Stream of Consciousness Sunday…

Today’s SoCS post is inspired by Linda G Hill and her prompt;

” “sign.” Use it any way you’d like. “

No problem…

I have decided to take the fact that it’s 80° outside, I have cider in the fridge, we’re having a bbq this afternoon and it’s fathers’ day, as a sign to spend the whole day doing nothing of any consequence whatsoever, so this story returns next week (if you haven’t started it yet, this would be the perfect time to catch up).

In the meantime, here’s to all the other fathers out there, cheers

I’ll leave you with a photo of my fathers’ day artwork from Audrey.

*************

#SoCS

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Stream of Consciousness Sunday: The Accumulator, part thirty five…

Hello there and welcome to the return of SoCS, after a three week hiatus, even if today’s post is a little short, continuing this story with assistance from Linda G Hill and her prompt for the week;

” “admit.” Use it any way you’d like. “

Right, where had we got to? Oh yes, I remember…

The Accumulator, part thirty five.

Scene: A derelict factory building, its brutal industrial outline silhouetted against the glowing orange lights of a distant town, while a full moon hangs directly above in the clear night sky.
It is the present.

The rusting chain link fence sags drunkenly, a broken gate hanging open, from which a redundant NO ADMITTANCE sign dangles, creaking as it sways in a slight, muggy breeze.

The wide opening shot now begins to tighten, gradually zooming in to a small window on the front of the building, which we glide through without incident and find ourselves in a large empty warehouse.
The perimeter of the cavernous interior is almost invisible in the gloom, indistinct walls rising into the shadows to meet the corrugated steel roof overhead.

The director treats us to a long slow pan around the silent space, coming smoothly to a halt as a diagonal shaft of moonlight comes into view, shining in through a broken roof panel.

Picked out by this solitary beam, as though by spotlight on an empty stage, a body is sprawled in a pool of blood, one leg twisted awkwardly beneath them, arms thrown out to either side as though welcoming Death, for there is no mistaking the stillness of the body for anything else.

From this angle it is impossible to tell who the figure is, the head and shoulders are shrouded in darkness, outside the jagged splash of moonlight, all we can see is that they are dressed in dark military style fatigues, but the gaping hole where their chest used to be is visible even from here.

After a few seconds, the screen fades to black.

*****

Scene: Inside the black van.
It is two hours ago.

Patrick is driving, travelling on a mostly deserted motorway, the strobing of streetlights flashing across his face, the strain of the day now starting to show in the dark rings around his eyes and the clenched muscles of his jaw.

Next to him, Cathy dozes in her seat while in the back, Carlisle watches her with a curious look on his face, as though trying to recall something just out of his reach. After a moment, the look turns to one of grim satisfaction and he sits back with a thoughtful expression as the van speeds on through the night.

***********

To be continued (using next week’s prompt {which can now be found HERE})…

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Stream of consciousness Sunday: The Accumulator, part thirty four…

The weather has allowed me to write alfresco again this week, so today’s SoCS post comes to you from the garden, serenaded by screaming children and lawnmowers, where we continue this story with a little help from Linda G Hill and her prompt;

” “language.” Use it any way you’d like. “

Seems straightforward enough…

The Accumulator, part thirty four.

Scene: Inside the black van.
Patrick is driving, Carlisle and Adam are in the back.
Adam sits behind Patrick with his gun trained on Carlisle, who is handcuffed to a leg of the long bench seat which runs down the opposite side of the van.

We get a long, slow pan of the van’s interior, and as the shot returns to Patrick’s profile, he turns, grins at the camera and stretches his hand out to us. A hand reaches from just out of shot to take his, which is when we realise we are seeing this from Cathy’s POV.

Then we get a title screen:

“We did it, we pulled it off!”

Patrick’s eyes shine with excitement and he is clearly elated as he laughs and turns his attention back to the road ahead and the director cuts to the view out of the passenger window, Cathy’s reflection overlaying the passing shops and houses…

…as a new voiceover fades in, only this time it’s Cathy’s voice we hear;

We did it, alright, but if he knew who “we” were, I doubt he’d be so thrilled.

It always amazes me that, no matter how many times we escape the clutches of The Department by the skin of our teeth, it never occurs to him to wonder how exactly they found us in the first place. I mean, ok; most people do assume a sinister global counter-intelligence organisation is somehow omniscient and all-seeing, but as long as you’re careful it isn’t hard to disappear, if you really want to.

He’d never think to suspect someone who was essentially his hostage, an unwilling accomplice to his escape from Braithwaite and his twisted little science project.
Someone who went through all the shit with him, who put up with all the danger and violence, someone who struggled with learning a new language every time they had to flee another home, someone who had never handled a gun until all this madness began, let alone killed people with one.

As far as he knew, anyway.

We never thought he would prove so adaptable, that was the problem. He learnt to harness and control his power far sooner than we originally anticipated, but we decided to run with it, to see how far he could get without raising suspicion.

At first we tried to have a team on him at all times, just in case he did something too public to be ignored, but we underestimated him from the start and the stunt at the quarry put him a few steps ahead of us for a while. It was touch and go for a while there, until we managed to reestablish contact, I don’t mind telling you.

But by then it would have made it too obvious, tracing him to Europe so quickly, and the decision was made to leave him in place while he wasn’t a threat and take him out after he’d become complacent.

Which would have been fine, (he’s a nice enough guy to shack up with, after all, and it’s not like living the simple life in the french countryside for a few years was a hardship) except then they screwed up the hit at the harbour and he got all bloody gung-ho about going back home to exact his awful revenge.
I really thought we’d have to take him out then, before he did some serious damage to the programme but, amazingly, it actually worked rather well in our favour.

Ok, the business at the hospital did cause a bit of a stir in the media for five minutes, but the pros far outweighed the cons when all the wrinkles were finally ironed out of that one; Braithwaite dead, Patrick arrested and under suspicion, Subject:Beta a publicly wanted man, (I can’t get used to calling him “Adam”, he’s a failed experiment, that’s all) all of which make for perfectly legitimate reasons for either of them to suffer unfortunate accidents, should the need arise.

And, frankly, we’re beyond that point now.
Subject:Beta is displaying much greater aptitude than Patrick did at this point, or has even exhibited thus far, for that matter. More worryingly, he seems to have evolved an almost unlimited potential for Accumulation and is fast-developing abilities that even we didn’t foresee, leading me to conclude that termination with extreme prejudice was the only viable option.

Carlisle has always done sterling work for us in the past and I’m disappointed, to say the very least, at his performance on this job. He will certainly be facing disciplinary sanctions, if the recommendations I make in my next report are acted on.

But that’s by the way, first of all we have to work out how to get this situation back under our control, then we can decide how best to dispose of Patrick and Carlisle, once we know there’s a way to contain Subject:Beta safely, preferably alive.

But we have Felix’s notes, all his records and equipment; even now The Department’s top medical teams are studying his work and researching new candidates for treatment, so it won’t be long before we can duplicate the good doctor’s work ourselves.

Then all three of them will all be expendable.

Our view out of the window changes, the shot narrowing until the wing mirror fills the screen.

We see Cathy’s reflection as she gazes at the passing scenery, then, as if she knows we’re watching her, she looks down, straight at us.

And she smiles, as the screen…

Cuts to black

*****

To be continued (using next week’s prompt {which can now be found HERE})…

#SoCS

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