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Date Posted: Thursday, May 04, 10:35:57pm
Author: Diane
Subject: Before the Coup
In reply to: JayBee and Nell 's message, "Friday Challenge: January 6, 2006 (yes, a bit late)" on Sunday, January 08, 02:55:23pm

The goons who had taken him were dismissed. He stood now before George and Adrian, the two people he hated most in the world. The two he most tried to emulate.

“We’ve decided not to put you in Abeyance. You still have some value here.” George’s voice was firm, solid. Dismissive.

Still, he stood.

“Really, Paul.” Adrian spoke as though continuing George’s train of thought. It was uncanny; like they were Siamese twins. One brain in two bodies. “If we hadn’t found you first, you’d be dead now. What made you think this...mission...you profiled would succeed?”

Her condescending tone grated. Paul continued to stand his ground.

“I ran a sim. Several sims. I reviewed the numbers. It was feasible. The chance of my being detected was less than 4%.

“Which is 4% too high.” This from George. “Did you really think you would get away with it? You must be mad.” Clearly, George’s part of the conversation was finished.

“You do realize this impulsive behavior will not go unpunished.” Paul ignored Adrian. It was she who had sent the retrieval team. She would regret that.

When he had descended from the Perch and returned to office, he pulled out a panel from beneath his desk. The code he typed secured the room from video and audio surveillance. Paul wanted to curse; to vent. But he didn’t. Impatience was his weakness; a weakness they would no longer exploit. The people who are trained to think, think. That was his credo, and Paul was a thinker.

George was secure; firmly entrenched at Oversight. It was Adrian’s job Paul wanted. The position of Operations. Adrian would go down. Soon. He would see to that personally.

“Madeline, I need to see you in my office.”

The intercom clicked off, and Paul closed his eyes. Adrian would be sorry. He would make her sorry. And all because he had gone to see his son, Steven, pitch in his first Little League Game.

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