Sunday, June 17, 2012

3/15/12 - The Day of The Gorgon - pt. 5

It starts in Pyongyang, of all places.

The Presidium is stormed from within at the top of the appointed hour -- its hallways turned into kill zones by a small but very determined group of pro-Democracy activists, armed with exciting new weapons. Generals, secretaries, and various functionaries die horribly as the True People's Army of the New Democratic Republic rampage through the capitol building, gleefully executing the old guard as they go.

Their main target is the boy king -- Kim Jong Un, not even a year into his lifelong reign. He is scheduled to be here, today, though exactly where is something they're not so sure of. But given how shoddy and piecemeal the Government's defenses are proving to be, it's only a matter of time before they find him.

And once he is seen to be in custody, their new friends have promised to appear and aid them in the process of freedom.

As the True People's Army kill and burn their way through the stately building, constructed on the backs of an entire nation, their unknown counterparts in other lands begin to do the same. An Aboriginal rights coalition surges into the Parliament House in Canberra as long-put-upon Communists march through the central government complex in Seoul. Pro-expansionist but anti-Imperial militarists in Tokyo leap from the closets and ceilings of the National Diet Building and begin to shoot the people's corrupt, America-led representatives, not long after those in favor of an even harsher police state in Singapore begin to put their plan into action.

In the capitol of almost every nation, going from East to West, the fire of revolution is brought to bear. Only America is spared the flames, for some strange reason.

And up above, far outside Lunar orbit, the man in charge of Deep Ten watches the rising smoke, and makes ready with his part of the plan. He can only hope -- in the absence of that his other allies are equally as ready, or this is going to be a very one-sided takeover.

And possibly quite short.

* * *

Considering how long it took Second and The Dragon to get to into engineering in the first place, the final steps to their ultimate goal go deceptively swift. 

They carefully sneak along the upper maintenance platform, trying to get there as fast as they can without being noticed by the Specials, down below. Then they cross a rude, unprotected gangplank to get to the thick, well-shielded platform over the reactor core. Once there, they wait until they're positive no one's looking their way, and then swiftly descend a ladder into another well-shielded area just behind the reactor, itself.

Between them and that location -- possibly the most secure location on the entire ship -- is a large, heavy door bristling with security measures, cameras, and weapons. The message is clear: only certain persons are even supposed to be here, even looking at it, and anyone not on the guest list should turn around and leave right the !@#$ now, or else go home in a small, zip-lock baggie. 

"Are you certain that you can open this door?" The Dragon asks. 

"Positive," Second lies: "But just in case I can't, you'll want to step back. There's a lot of unnecessary force behind the blasters."

"I think I can leap out of the way in time."

"Well, even then, you might get a bit singed."

The Dragon arches an eyebrow at him, and takes a lithe half-step to the side. Second smiles, nods, and steps forward onto the red line before the door. 

The machinery lights up, and dozens of small, lightning-swift probes and testers encircle him, all taking a miniscule amount of his skin to be sure he's who he says he is. Retinal scans flare and flash, his mind is read three times, and he gives a single word when prompted: "Antidisestablishmentarianism." 

There's a scary moment when it looks like it hasn't worked, but that's all part of the process, apparently. The devices stop in their spinning, and are retracted. A second later, the door pushes itself out, and then to the side.

"The secondary control room," Second says, gesturing to The Dragon, who, ever so carefully, walks in ahead of him.

The small, windowless room's not much to look at, at least at first. But as they enter, and approach the three chairs in its center, a wealth of holographic displays and interfaces light up, showing a miniaturized version of the controls from the flight deck. There's also a 3-D schematic of The Flier, itself, showing everything that's going on, and where everyone is.

(Except for them, here, and whatever's happening in the Director's office.)

"So, here we are," The Dragon says, giving everything a gimlet-eyed look. 

"Alright, the first thing we need to do is contact Washington," Second says, walking past Dragon and heading for one of the chairs: "Let the President and Richter know what's going on, and see if we can't mount a response. Then we find a way to get those Specials off board. Dump 'em in the !@#$ing water for all I care. And then-"

There's a strange wet, noise, and then Second's feeling like he's not quite there, anymore. He looks down at his chest, and sees there's a red, bloody fist where his sternum should be.

A fist holding his heart.

"I think we know what to do with your Flier," The Dragon says, standing right behind him: "You have been most helpful. Truly."

"Oh... !@#$ you..." Second mumbles, defiant to the last. 

And then there's nothing but silence.

* * *

"We repeat, we have the monster!" The North Koreans are shouting into the camera, holding a very scared, fat-faced young man up so their friends can get a good look at him: "We have him, as you told us! Now we are ready! You promised! Why won't you speak to us?"

The Director of the CIA watches this dispassionately, holed up in his Langley office and most pointedly not taking any calls from anyone. All morning long his people have been telling him of massive intelligence blackouts, and networks of spies and informants going quiet, or even completely offline. And all he's done is tell them to keep looking into it, but not do anything until he has a more complete picture of what's going on. 

Meanwhile, the picture in question's assembling itself in front of him, as planned.

He flips channels on his computer to other, similar scenes, elsewhere. Tokyo has completed its mission, as has Islamabad, Seoul, Singapore, and Canberra. New Delhi is still hammering at their leader's super-secure door, and their people in Kabul were completely wiped out by a very quick-thinking response team.

Moscow brings him a special smile, seeing as how the plan ended with the Prime Minister taking his own life, rather than submitting to the Communist fanatics taking over the Duma. No sign of Putin, yet, but after today he'll be so marginalized that he'll be hardly worth hunting down.

Not once the world reshapes itself around him. 

The world is burning East to West, in time with the Sun, and it's all his doing. He is the one who saw to the infiltration of the best, most organized -- or at least most dangerous -- anti-governmental groups around the world. He's the one who saw that they made new friends in seemingly high places, and gave them the weapons, training, and intelligence necessary to take over their own governments on cue. 

Now that they're winning, he's the one who's going to signal the activation of the second wave, once they've achieved certain benchmarks. And once that's in hand, he will personally activate the third phase and bring the plan to a close... 

Suddenly, his mind comes alive. He hears the opening strains of a certain song, and stands to attention.

Love is all you need, he thinks, joining minds with Dr. Yesterday, Director Straffer, and their Leader.

The Flier is secure in our hands, their leader announces: The second and third waves can begin... provided we are ready?

A challenge to the Director, and he's ready for it: We are almost ready. I am awaiting news from London, Paris, Brussels, and Jerusalem. These are the final four we must have the most concern over.

They would be easily dealt with from above, Straffer points out in his own, unhelpful way.
No, the leader says: That is not the plan. How long before London and Brussels are knocked out?

The Director breaks contact for a moment to look at his monitor. The Prime Minister of England has just been thrust into the view of the camera. And in Brussels...
We have England... now France. Still no word on Belgium. But-

The European Union can do nothing to us, Dr. Yesterday opines: They're as toothless as the UN, compared to what we have. Israel, on the other hand, is a real problem.

One easily handled, Straffer says.
We stick to the plan, the leader insists: Do you have faith that the second team in Brussels will complete their takedown of the European Union?

I do, the Director says: They are fractious and not suited to lengthy work together, but if they can hold to their plan long enough, they will succeed. 

And are Canada, Brazil, and Mexico spoken for?

Brasilia and Mexico City fell almost immediately. Canada is having some problems... I think the group underwent a schism just after the plan went live and they're now shooting at each other-

No matter, the leader says: We will advance. Straffer, begin the second wave. (REDACTED), stand by for the third wave. Doctor, maintain security at the Ice Palace.

I am so proud of all of you. You have done excellent work. We will prevail. Love is all you need.

"Love is all you need," the Director says, breaking contact and sitting down in his chair. Brussels is now a fait accompli, on both sides, but Israel...

"We had better be right," he says, allowing himself a little, all-too-human doubt in the face of what could be a plan-breaker. 

* * *

Myron very pointedly goes quiet, post-jailbreak

He does not send up an alert, or make any calls to security. The guards who were waylaid and knocked out and down by the Indians can sleep it off for a time. Likewise, the guards waiting for SPYGOD, at his intended cell, can wait there all !@#$ing day for all he cares.

Instead, he walks up the stairwell that SPYGOD vanished from. He knows the cameras there are all set to a loop, so as to not catch his former Director's exit from the building, or who spirited him away. He also knows that he can walk all the way up to the level his office is on, and not be seen or reported, provided everyone just takes the !@#$ing stairs.

Especially the Specials.

He doesn't know how high this conspiracy goes. Is Next Man who he says he is? Is Second, for that matter? Can The Dragon be trusted or not?

All he knows for sure is that it's only a matter of time before someone from the Heptagon calls over to The Flier and tells them they've got SPYGOD in a cell. And then it's only a matter of time before someone from The Flier calls back and wants confirmation, and the call goes through to Myron. He won't be able to stall them indefinitely -- not on something like that -- and then the President will want to know, and the Joint Chiefs, and !@#$ing Congress, and whatever chattering monkey the Republicans have as a front-runner this week...

"It's all over, isn't it?" Myron asks himself as he rounds the last set of stairs to his floor, knowing all too well that it is. 

Then his world goes sideways, quite literally. 

There's a bright light from the stairway door's small window, and people scream. Then the entire stairwell shakes and rattles, as though the ground was pounded hard right next door. The lights flicker on and off, and then go dead.

Myron runs through a million possible scenarios in his mind, standing there in near-panic. But by the time he's gotten through the door he's composed enough to realize that it wasn't a direct attack on the Heptagon. Maybe something near...?

"What the !@#$ is going on?" he yells into his communicator, but it's gone dead. Everyone's has from the looks of things. And no alarm sounds, no voices over the intercom.

He busts through the door, and finds that the scene outside it, in the southern hallway, is sheer bedlam. Agents are running every which way, panicked. Screams are coming from the areas near the windows, and the Agents nearest to them are on their knees, clutching at their faces.

Sunburned badly from the looks of it. And their eyes...

There's another, even brighter light from outside, and Myron turns to duck, throwing his hands up over his face. He's just in time, and his skin feels eerily warm for a whole second, and then deathly cold, as the Heptagon shakes again -- even worse than last time.

"Nukes?" he asks, thinking EMP. But his watch is still working, along with his They Live glasses. 

Then it hits him. That looked like a pulse beam weapon, which are immensely large, highly powerful, and way too dangerous to have anywhere on Earth, or even in near Earth orbit.

Which means that either they're being invaded, or...

"Deep Ten," he says, looking up at the ceiling: "Holy !@#$ing !@#$."

He fully expects to not live long enough to take another step, but then the suspected bolt of death from above does not come. When the Heptagon shakes, again, ten seconds later, it's less violent, and the light from outside comes from a different angle.

"Two beams, both from the south," he thinks out loud: "One closer than the other. Why? What are they doing?"

But then he sees some Specials stomping down the hallway. They walk up to the blinded Agents, over by the window, and, rather than stopping to give aid, shoot them with their gauss weapons.

"!@#$ me," Myron says, running for his office as panic turns to riot. A few Agents have the clear-headedness to assume proper firing stance and fire back, but they might as well be shooting spitballs at the heavily-armored beings.

It's to Myron's eternal credit that he doesn't immediately think of escape, but rather what he can do to fix this situation. By the time he reaches his office he's got the rudiments of a plan rattling around in his skull, but it's going to take more than an untested kill-switch and a killer pair of shades.

It's going to take a miracle.

(SPYGOD is listening to She's Lost Control Again (Joy Division) and having a New River)

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