Friday, April 13, 2007
Friday Fiction
Ladies and Gentlemen:

My entry for this week's fiction is below and cross-posted with all of the SpySistah Chronicles here (scroll to the bottom, they are posted in order).

I am currently unaware of any other participants. If you have written something, please leave me a comment and I'll link it.

Without further fanfare, here it is...

SpySistah Chronicles Chapter 17: A Laser and a Wheelbarrow

Elise and Samantha didn’t want to see another boat for a good long time. Three boats, one odorous truck, and two cramped flights had led them from Hong Kong to Karachi. They were traveling extremely lightly, with most of their possessions left in the closet at the Excelsior Hotel. What little they did have smelled distinctly of fish.

So, it was with considerable relief that they found Chris Ghidorzi waiting for them. Chris resembled a sexier Ben Affleck. His family was in the construction business and Chris had a physique that let one imagine he was made of steel.

Samantha and Elise approached him wearily; three days of non-stop travel had penetrated deeper than their clothing, leaving cramped muscles and eye strain to accessorize their gamey stench.

Chris wrinkled his nose at their noisome perfume. “I may ride with your luggage and put you two in the fresh air!” A smile cracked from the corner of his mouth.

They were soon seated three-across in a very old and dusty pickup. He gave them muted scarves to don while he placed a sort of tribal sack over his shirt. “Keep your heads down until we get out of town.”

As Chris drove, Samantha told him what Kai-ying had learned. She played the audio for Chris and discussed uploading the jpgs for identification when they arrived at the safe house.

The safe house’s exterior belied the tech-heavy interior. From the outside it could have been any other Pakistani farmhouse, a bit run-down, but functional. From the inside it was a high-tech marvel, all steel and glass and comforting coolness, a stark contrast to the heat and sweltering sun beyond the doors.

Samantha sent Elise to the shower and plugged her pen into Chris’s computer. Images of Chinese men and Middle Eastern men appeared on screen.

“This,” Chris said pointing to one Chinese individual, “is Li Wei, the leader of an ETIM cell and this,” pointing to another man, “is Zhuge Gang, his lieutenant. This guy,” he indicated the Middle Eastern-looking man, “is an unknown.”

“He seems the most likely on-ground trigger man,” Samantha reasoned.

“But could he be al Qaeda?” Chris paced the room. “We have long suspected a connection between ETIM and al Qaeda but have lacked proof. We know that the target is a mosque, though. That helps. Back in May 05 there was a bombing of a Shiite mosque here in town. Let’s take a look at the possibles, shall we?”

Two hours later, the trio had identified the most likely target. Samantha left Elise and Chris brainstorming while she showered.

She soon returned to the tech center to discuss the plan. “Chris, do we inform the local authorities about the threat?”

He looked up from the pencil-drawn map. “No. Unfortunately, the local leader’s affiliations and sympathies are suspect. Also, we don’t have any hard evidence. We’ll be flying this one alone.”

“Do we shoot-to-kill?” Elise asked the question with all seriousness.

“If there is no other way. I’d like to take this character into custody for interrogation, but if he is planning a suicide, that may be impossible. Let’s take an organic approach and stay in contact with each other.”

The next day, they put surveillance in place at the mosque. Elise sat sipping tea in a shop while Chris blended into a group of Pakistani men on the street. Samantha stood near the mosque in an open area where rugs and other items were on sale.

The call to prayer was heard in the evening and the three watched and waited for their man. Samantha had just about given up, thinking that they had identified the wrong target, when she saw him.

“Our friend has arrived.” Samantha said this into her watch, its leather case strapped to her wrist. “He has a rug under his arm. Anybody else suspect that’s where the explosives are? Elise, do you have a clear shot?”

Elise answered. “Lasing now.” She paused. “Thank god for those geeks at MIT! We have a positive.”

Samantha moved into action. She picked up her bag, slinging it across her chest, and walked toward the bomber. “Excuse me,” she interrupted him in a French accent. “Can you tell me how to get to…” Samantha stumbled on the cobbles and fell into the bomber. Instinctively, he reached out to catch the attractive tourist.

“Oh, thank you,” she gushed, looking at him through lashes. “You are so kind. Please, let me thank you properly.” She reached into her bag. The man started to walk away but just as he got past her she placed the muzzle of her gun in the center of his back.

“Drop.the.damn.rug.” She gritted the words out with venom. Without thinking, the man dropped the rug and it lay on the ground at his feet. Instantaneously, Chris appeared at her side by the rug. Elise arrived, her own gun trained on the bomber.

Chris gingerly looked inside the roll. He looked up in sheer panic.

“There’s no time! Clear the area!” Chris turned and ran to one of the stalls and grabbed a big steel wheelbarrow and threw it over the rug while Elise screamed “BOMB!” Samantha pushed the bomber back to safety just in time to see the explosion. The wheelbarrow contained most of the blast, but people were still running and screaming.

In the confusion, no one noticed that not a single person had been harmed. Nor did they notice four people slipping away in the confusion.

Later that evening, after Chris had transferred the bomber into the hands of the interrogation team, Samantha and Chris stood in front of the farmhouse.

“Beautiful sunset.” She said.

“You still living with Mark?”


“Too bad. I wouldn’t mind having you for a partner.” This was accompanied by a lecherous grin.
“Ah, yes,” Samantha thought to herself. “A successful mission always makes the male agents a little horny.” The CIA version of carpe diem.

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posted by Phoenix | 1:00 AM


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