“Report to my office immediately. This conversation will not take place in public.”
Leah reluctantly follows him down the long hallways, past the guards, through the retinal scan security stations, and finally to his office's outer area. Death Row is what the enlisted call it. It's not a place a soldier wants to spend any time. Leah finds the name appropriate, considering that not only does she feel like she'd rather die, but also because if her cover's been compromised, she probably will actually die.
“Report your whereabouts for the last 48 hours.”
“Admiral Jenkins, sir, I wish I could. I may have been drugged. I have no recollection of any events following the completion of my assignment. I do have the suspect interview chip secured.”
She hopes it is secure. No sense in alerting him to the probability that it may have been...taken. She hasn't had time to check.
“I expect more from my senior officers. You're the first Titan Class operative I've ever had the need to trace. And the first one who appears to have spent her last few days in disgraceful debauchery.”
Leah almost cracks a smile on that one. If only he knew her true identity. But that sobering thought is also enough to stifle the smile. She's worked tirelessly to keep up with the men in her profession. Some societal mores don't change no matter how advanced the technology. There will always be the good ole' boys in her organization. Not to mention in the elite corps that she'd been steadily infiltrating for the last few years. Covers this deep take time to develop. It was for the sake of her cover that she'd taken her “shore” leave with some of those good ol' boys to the rec area and started drinking. She knows better. Ian has been drilling that into her daily.
“Leah, you can't drink. You know that. If you don't have the neutralizers with you, either spill that drink or taunt one of the others into taking it. Your mission is too important to risk anything. Promise?”
She always promised. But some vices are hard to give up. What could be the harm in just one Victorian? She used to down them by the six pack back on Earth.
Admiral Jenkins is actually worried under all the pissed off, and that's an emotion he rarely allows himself to feel. He's never seen one of his senior officers fall this far from grace. And so quickly. She has been doing well and passing all of the disguised training tests that even she herself hasn't been aware she's taking. Jenkins is grooming her to be his off-planet liaison for when the colony on Valdeen is ready for habitation. With her classic looks and smooth social manner, no one will suspect her Titan training, weapons techniques, or her brilliant scientific mind. She'll make an excellent operative.
Leah, on the other hand, isn't so sure about anything anymore. Is all of this worth it? At first she'd thought her motivation would give her the fortitude to persevere. But after five years, she doesn't feel like she's truly any closer to avenging his death.
Continued at Muse 3
Continued at Muse 3
This is part 3 of a 10 piece story written for the River of Mnemosyne competition over at 10th Daughter of Memory. Button in side bar. I know you're questioning my math, but part 1 was anything we wanted, and then part 2 was muse 1 (a prompt provided by another participant, but more of a motivation rather than a line to be used intact) so this is muse 2, otherwise known as part 3. Confused? Yes, me too. But it sure is fun! And I got provide muse 8! (Which will be part 9, are you catching on yet?) I should give you some links for the first two parts...but I'm too tired from trying to understand the rules. Just look at my previous posts over there on the side. I haven't written anything besides this since it started...