Fiction Fragment Friday
This is one of those weeks where I really examine my inspiration for the story and don’t really know where it all came from. I had the initial dialogue about mosquitos pop into my head and just started writing. That established this as a team doing a stealth mission. From there the rest just grew organically. I was at the hospital with my dad the day before writing this for a test that was a medical procedure needing to be done in an operating room. I can definitely see some influences in the story from that.
This story feels like a world building exercise. An establishing feel or an introduction to something that could be developed further and be something larger. I have no plans for that at the moment, but you never know what the future may hold.
“Are mosquitoes supposed to be this big?”
“Aw that ain’t nothin. Back home they get twice that size.”
“Would you two shut up. This is supposed to be a stealth mission.”
“Yes sir,” the two men replied far louder than Corporal Sanderson would have liked. He let out an audible sigh before continuing forward through the forest. The group moved together with the practiced grace of well-trained operatives who frequently work together. The Corporal in the lead and one man flanking either side of him slightly back. They were dressed identically in black tactical gear with their faces obscured by full masks and night vision goggles. There were no visible weapons, but multiple blades and unique weapons were hidden on each.
The Three men approached a ten-foot-tall chain link fence topped with barbed-wire. Corporal Sanderson motioned to the fence and the man to his right reached up to grab it. The three men stepped through the fence like there was nothing there and once through the man codenamed Ghost released the fence. The courtyard on the inside of the fence was very well lit with spotlights roaming across the grounds. Ghost reached out to take the hand from each of his partners. With a ripple across them he changed their physical properties to allow visible light to travel through them. This served to turn the three completely invisible, but also blinded them as light could no longer be stopped by their eyes. The goggles they wore switched to display infrared and other light spectrum outside of the range of human visibility. Since the goggles completely enclosed the space between their displays and the wearers eyes they were able to see the displays. While not a complete picture of the grounds it was enough to safely navigate to the building’s outer walls. Once there they crouched in a shadow and became visible again.
The man codenamed AI started to reach out with his abilities. Under the goggles his eyes turned completely white and the other two had to support him as his consciousness left his body. He traveled the wireless networks that spread throughout the complex. First, he searched the databases and building maps to locate their target. Next, he moved into the security system asking the cameras to loop and unlocking all the doors along their path. Finally, he introduced a bug into the communication systems to turn the volume down to barely audible. There were many more direct ways he could have disrupted communications, but they tended to alert the observant to infiltration. His eyes returned to normal under his goggles. Turning to his partners he whispered, “Target location acquired and security suppressed. Ready to move.”
Ghost reached up and touched the wall. The three walked through the wall like it was not physically there and once through he released it. The hallway they entered was lit by bright florescent lights, the walls were a pastel blue, and the tile floor was a bright white with a reflective quality to it. The harsh smell of cleaning chemicals assaulted their noses. There were signs on the wall providing directions, but the three ignored them following AI’s lead instead as he entered a stairway and let them three floors underground. The group came out in a hallway that looked almost identical to the one they had come from with one major exception. This hall had armed guards outside one of the rooms that turned their weapons towards them.
Corporal Sanderson moved forward fast enough that his movements blurred to both his partners and his targets. Before either guard could pull the trigger, Sanderson had snapped off the barrels of their riffles with his bare hands. With precision strikes each guard fell unconscious at his feet with barely more than a grunt. Lifting each by one hand he carried them through a door that AI was holding open and into a storage room. Once he left AI closed the door and put his hand over the electronic keypad next to the room. A clicking sound could be heard at the door locks snapped into place. He just nodded at the Corporal and together they moved to the door that the guards had been standing in front of.
Inside the room a woman lay strapped down on the gurney with an IV in her arm. The rhythmic beeps of medical monitors filled the room. The trio could see sutures on the woman’s arms and they suspected there would be more under the hospital gown. They had been too late to prevent any experimentation, but each swore internally that this woman would not go through more. AI touched the monitors and after a moment nodded to the others. They began taking of the leads and sensors, but the monitors continued to happily report consistent and reasonable data as if they were still attached. Corporal Sanderson wrapped her in a blanket and carefully lifted her into his arms. Ghost gathered all the physical charts from the room. There would likely be additional physical copies, but they could only do so much. AI sat in a chair for a moment and slumped as his eyes turned white again. After about a minute he sat back up and whispered, “All her records in their systems have been erased. We’re good to go.”
The trio backtracked reversing all their steps while Corporal Sanderson carried the unconscious woman. AI undid the security changes he had made and cleared entries from all logs once they were back outside. The group were soon back in the forest moving towards their waiting extraction van on the highway without any further incidents. Once on the road fifteen minutes into returning to base the woman finally started to come out of her sedation. She was groggy and didn’t make much sense at first, but eventually started to become more coherent.
“Who are you people?”
Corporal Sanderson answered her. “We’re people like you. We have powers. Our organization tries to gather and help others like us. My partners and I had skills that lend themselves to us being a search and rescue team. There are quite a few agencies and labs out there trying to take people like us apart to figure out how we do the things we do. When we find out they kidnap someone like they did with you we go in and get you out. I know this is a lot to process, but the way anesthesia works you might not even remember this conversation and I hate having to repeat it. Just rest now. There will be plenty of time for questions later.”
Jemma was a nurse who could trigger rapid wound healing and immune system reactions in others. As she glanced at her sutures, she not for the first time wished that her abilities could work on herself. She knew that the man was right about anesthesia, but when they got wherever they were going she was going to ask her questions and she swore to herself that if she didn’t like the answers it didn’t matter what these people could do, she would not be anyone’s prisoner again. After all, she thought, a strong immune system reaction against a healthy system would devastate someone no matter how powerful they were. With that thought comforting her she drifted back to sleep.