Author Note: Psshh silly 404 Error. Last Original piece for today. Unless you ask for one. Thanks for reading. Takes place a few chapters after "New World"
Griffan awoke with his whole body in pain. Meaning he was absolutely alive and in a Guardian medical bay. Anywhere else and he’d be dead on a slab. The room’s lights were blinding and the metal walls seemed to reflect all of it at Griffan. The bed was hard and the blanket given to him let every breeze through. “Griffan get the fuck up. You aren’t dead.”
Griffan sat up and turned his head in the direction of his visitor. “Hyden it’s good to see you.” Hyden sat in a chair next to Griffan’s bed with her arms crossed across her chest.
“Well it looks like you pissed someone off enough they used your face as a kickball. A concussion, internal bleeding and broken bones later.” Hyden huffed. She didn’t look at Griffan and stared at the wall. “Any idea who did it?”
“Michael Void sent them after me.” Griffan said.
“Yeah a sweeper team found the other guy in the alley. The other one was long gone. Both powered?” Hyden asked in a way that indicated to Griffan she already knew the answer.
“Yes.” Griffan answered. He sat up and looked at Hyden. “He all but confessed to me about the base attacks. And if you’re here the Director sent you and you know about it.”
“Yes.” Hyden said as she got up from her chair and walked to the foot of Griffan’s bed. “I saw the bodies. I hope we nail that fucker to the wall.”
Griffan slide over and sat at the edge of the bed. The only reason Void would admit his actions even in the vaguest of ways would be because he is hiding something. There was much more to this. “You up for a trip L8?” Griffan asked.
Hyden snapped her head over to him and had a curious look on her face. Griffan should be feeling like he got hit by a bus right now and shouldn’t be this eager for action this fast. Griffan was a machine. “You just got out of treatment.”
Griffan hoped out of bed, though he still looked to be in a lot of pain. “The bones have mended and the bruises are gone. Modern Guardian medical science for the win. Let’s go.”
Both agent left Chicago base. They took a transport out of base. They flew into cloaked, headed straight for Michael Void’s office. They flew in at the floor his office was, parking on the outside of it and breaking a window to get in. The transport scrambled whatever security measures Void may have had in place on the window. It was just Hyden and Griffan in the office.
They searched the place, Griffan knocking over books from their shelves, scanning the area without much care. “Very subtle Spade.” Hyden shook her head and searched for anything on Void’s computer. It was just left open and it didn’t need a password. She read through shipping documents. In the last couple months several shipments mad under his name were made on freighters he bought. All headed for South America. She copies of these documents sent to Agent Langely’s computer at base. Maybe something more could be found.
“Find anything?” Griffan asked, sifting through book pages and them throwing them aside.
“If I knew what I was looking for. Are we even sure he is our guy?” Hyden questioned as she searched through the computer.
Griffan answered, “I’m sure. The question is who is helping him?”
Hyden stopped typing. In order for someone to take Guardian tech, have a bases agents be killed in the manner they were and not alert the nearest Installation would require the help of someone in Guardian. “You don’t think one of ours could be helping him do you? It’s… I can’t wrap my head around it.”
Griffan walked over to the desk and stood behind Hyden. “Makes since. What doesn’t make sense is Void admitting it. You also probably noticed you haven’t run into a single block or password on his computer.”
Hyden nodded and turned around in the chair. “Yeah. It’s like he wants us to see this stuff. To let us get close and for what? Why would he do that if he knows we’ll stop him.”
If Michael really did have Guardian technology, and was really getting help it would take more than the help of a single agent. It could be several or even a few. If it was a Level 8 helping him then he could have all the resources he would need for an operation against the organization. But that agent would be suspect to scrutiny by the other L8’s and to move those resources it would need to be voted on. A level 9 couldn’t do it without the attention of the Director. “No. That isn’t right.” Griffan said under his breath.
“What?” Hyden asked. Griffan started passing back and forth in front of the window. He ran his hand through his hair and shook his head. He repeated the word no before his just stood in place and remained quiet.
“Do you hear that?” Griffan asked.
Hyden rolled her eyes and shot a glare at Griffan. “No and what the hell are you talking about?”
“Griffan walked towards the agent and slid her and her chair over. He looked under the desk. Searching for something. “What are you—“
Griffan chuckled and turned to Hyden. “Now that’s theatrical.”
Agent Eliza Langely’s lab:
“So he had a bomb in his office?” Eliza questioned, while on her computer screen live video of Chicago fire fighters fighting a fire where the office of Michael Void used to be.
“Yeah and Griffan threw us out of a window.” Hyden said, smelling of smoke and picking bits of glass from her long black hair.
Griffan stood back and watched the screen. The bomb was under the desk. It was a small round device that gave off a slight chirping sound. The explosion took out the whole room and none of the other floors would have been affected. That bomb was men for them. “Did you find anything from the documents, Hyden sent.”
Eliza scoffed, “Who are you talking to?” She typed away on her computer, the room’s lights dimmed. The Screen projected a holographic display of a warehouse. “From the bits I was able to get before the connection was cut the equipment being sent to South America get sent here and to other factories like around the Mid-west and West coast. Then they are sent off and I haven’t been able to find what’s being shipped, how much of it or where its final destination is. It just disappears once it reaches the other continent.”
“What the fuck? So it just disappears and we can’t find it?” Hyden said, scanning the holographic image.
“Send an information request to 501, tell the Director we need to see where these shipments are going. A Guardian satellite would be able to track the last shipment and we could follow it from departure.” Griffan ordered.
“I can’t.” Eliza answered.
Griffan’s eyes widened in surprise. “What?”
Eliza let her glasses fall to the tip of her nose and glared at Griffan over the top of them. “I can’t because Chicago base is cut off from Installation 501s virtual intelligence. I can’t even get in contact with the Installations operators.”
“Damn it.” Hyden whispered.
“Hyden suit up and meet me at the transport. Eliza get me two agents for a field assignment. We’re going to that warehouse tonight.” Griffan ordered as he went for the door.
“What a minute!” Hyden shouted rushing to meet Griffan at the exit. “Do you mind sharing what the hell is going on?”
Griffan stopped at the door. ‘I’ll get to that. But you asked me a question before at the office.”
Hyden’s face turned red. Griffan wasn’t telling her something. She was the Level 8 of 501. In charge of Guardian operations on the continent and everyone seemed to know more than her. They were cut off from an Installation and Griffan was beating around the bush. “Listen I don’t…”
“You asked me why Void would do this if he knew we would just catch him.” Griffan said, cutting her off. “It would be because we can’t stop him.”
Combat Information Center:
The Combat Information Center was housed in a large glass dome on the Installation. The dozen operators who worked there sat and sent messages back and forth between the bases of North America, gathering information and piloting the massive station through the sky. The Director over watched them all from here seat in the middle of the room.
The CIC of an instillation controls the air traffic of vehicles leaving and returning to the base. The Director can get in contact with any number of bases from the Combat information center allowing her to give orders to any Guardian facility. In a combat situation it acts as a command center where the level 8 or head director on base can give orders to ground and air troops. Though they are rarely to never used, a Guardian instillation has numerous offensive weaponry and defensive technology, such as its main gun that extends the length of the base.
The Director was finishing orders to go out in the next thirty minutes. There were assassination attempts to be thwarted, accidents that needed happening, medical breakthrough's to be allowed discovery and uprisings to be sparked; amongst other things. Most plans won't come to fruition for years, but they needed to be done in order to keep the Earth on a teetering slope of stability. Guardian isn't perfect though, even the best laid plans have the potential to back fire, as Guardian is still run by men.
The Director sunk in her chair. " How can one region of the world be so annoying?" She groaned. "Tell agents to undermine the unification of that frustrating peninsula."
"Yes Director." One of the CIC's operators answered. An Installation’s operations handle all data and mission reports from all over the continent. Processing vast amounts of information and making split second decisions that determine the happenings on the continent. All with the Directors approval.
"I also want our economy guys to shake things up. Some of these sheep are getting too greedy for their own good." The Director ordered.
"Yes, Director!" An operator replied.
"Director a spike in praetorian energy in the atmosphere over New Haven has been detected."
"Tell our agents to observe the situation. I want a full report before any action is taken. "
"Ma'am you’re being paged from moon base." Another one of the CIC's twenty operators said.
The Director crossed her arms, running a hand through her black hair. She knew what this message was about and just wanted to ignore it. Guardian has a base on the moon and several smaller ones on the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter for asteroid mining. The agent in charge of moon base calling her meant only an argument. "Put her through." She begrudgingly ordered.
A white screen came into view in front of her. Inside the little screen held a blonde haired woman, her skin was white as snow, she wore an eye patch with the mark of a deaths head on it and she seemed to have a permanent sneer on her face. Her back faced a window facing outside the base, stars shining brightly on the other side. "What can I do for you, Idanna?" The Director greeted in mock cheer.
"I've come to talk on important matters child." The blonde said, her words being more like a growl.
"Child?" If there was one thing about Idanna L8 of moon base she didn't care for was her boldness. No one talked to her in this way. “Must we start name calling?”
Idanna put a hand over her eye patch; a hidden fury was built up in her face. "I want to know what you're doing about the base attacks!"
"You don't get to make demands of the Director!" She snapped, making the other woman freeze in her seat and sit quiet. "Is that clear?"
Idanna bowed her head. "My apologies Director."
The Director nodded in approval. "The attacks are being investigated."
The level eight gave the director a suspicious look. "Really? Because I spoke with the L8 of installation 212 and I was told no investigation was ordered and that all Guardian technology went missing."
The pale woman's face turned bright red with rage, her single eye narrowed in on the director. "I would also like to know why you have ordered Guardian control over civilian commercial and defense satellites."
The Director raised an eyebrow and had a look of surprise on her face. "Going behind my back now?"
"If it gets my answers, yes!" Iddana retorted. "Now are you going to tell me what's really going on?"
"It's being investigated." She ordered the transmission cut. Several of her operators looked back at her.
"If she calls back ignore it." The Director said, angrily walking towards the elevator in the back of the CIC. No person in Guardian infuriated her more than that woman. Ever since she became Director, Idanna had challenged her authority. Finding fault in every decision, getting the council of level 8's to review her actions. "Actually I want her communications signal completely cut from the comm relays!"
The Director’s Office:
"Today is the day I quit!" Or at least that is what she told herself everyday as she looked down at the syringe pointed at her arm. It was filled will a dark red liquid. It glinted in the florescent lighting in her office, the syringe promising a short release from the four windowless walls of her office and the worldly matters of being Director of Guardian. "Today I quit." That is what she tells her self. She sticks the needle into her arm. She doesn't even need to find a vain, it was just point and inject for it to work. She watches as the liquid disappears. Facing her shame she calls it. She quits every day only to lie every day.
She felt a sudden rush. It was starting to take effect. She found her way under her desk and curls herself into a ball on the floor. Her finger tips got numb, and she starts rocking herself and breathing heavy. She slows her breathing, she lets it take her. Her body relaxes; she loses herself in the thoughts of others. She could hear people from 501st over North America to Moscow and from there to every person in the province she lived in back in China. She reveled in their memories, their lives.
Life she could never have. She watched people through their minds eye looking at their actions current and past. She never interfered with these people. Not even to save them from danger. Only to observe the daily lives of the ordinary people she was responsible for. She lives a life through the people she watches. It's a lie. In thirty minutes it would pull her back to reality. Her reality. A reality where she leads a secret organization that is responsible for the six billion people on the planet. A people she has no stake in or could care less about. To her they were just faces she monitored, only intervening when they couldn't possibly handle the situation or even before they even knew of one.
In Guardian you can do whatever you want as long as it doesn't affect the organization or your performance. If it becomes a problem the agent that promoted you to a higher clearance is at fault. So most agents don’t form habits that could affect them in the negative, or if they do it’s hidden. Her particular vice was mutagen, a habit seen as useful to those who know of it. The mutagen stimulated the neural pathways in her brain, amplifying her abilities. Communicating one on one across the planet was never a problem for here. When she's using she can speak to multiple people all over the world. Gather information that would take any other agent weeks to gather. She liked the freedom the mutagen gave her, even though it wasn't real. It was a way to have a life where she doesn't have any.
Aside from the track marks that cover her arm, if there were any side effects she didn't notice. But when she gets off her high the realities of her life crash back and she’s trapped within again. She often wept when she came down. It was back to the reminder of her actuality that often caused extreme depression for a couple of hours afterward. "But not today I suspect." She lied.
Plans have been set in motion for her to escape her reality. To finally be free of her responsibility... to be free of a people than would fear her if her existence was known … free of Guardian and a life she now abhorred.