Supernatural Science Fiction posted March 5, 2011 Chapters: -Prologue- 1... 


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'Tas and Henry plan a fact-finding mission.

A chapter in the book Weapon

Prologue: Preparation

by SeLF

During the summer months following the grisly discovery of Denis Grandcoeur's and the still unidentified young woman's remains, Henry and I did some serious physical training at the practise site. We continued to patrol at night on weekends, and on a couple of randomly selected week nights, to prevent abuse of the homeless. Even with summer traffic and tourists, we found we worked harder in our practise routines than during our patrols. The fact that we were out there, along with some other community volunteers, helped keep people safe at night. There were a few altercations with opportunistic bullies and a few tourists who had consumed way too much alcohol, but no sex traffickers prowled the streets and alleys in our part of town. But, because of the research Henry had done, we knew we were preparing ouselves to confront a bigger, and more powerful foe than Deryl Drusen.

One muggy summer morning over breakfast, Henry asked me if I'd be interested in doing some reconnaissance in the town of Two Rivers, which is a few hundred kilometres north in the interior of the province. He told me The Cadre had made its provincial head office there, rather than at the coast, to deliberately avoid the numerous Asian, Aboriginal, and biker gangs that were fighting for turf control against the Chinese Triad. The Triad controlled most of the lucrative, illegal activities, including the entry of drugs from abroad into western North America via that port city.

The Cadre, however, was singularly focused on human trafficking.

"Why only human trafficking?" I asked.

"I think it all ties in with their skewed religious beliefs and far right political ideology, which, in their view, has made them 'the chosen' in the world. They claim to be Christians, which is a monstrous insult to all genuine Christians. The gods they really worship are money, and the power and contol it buys.

"Most of its members come from extremely wealthy and politically powerful families which made their fortunes in huge companies involved in commodities, energy, resources, and the military-industrial complex. However, many of the younger generation have not accomplished anything themselves, in any endeavour. They were, and are, indulged heirs to massive fortunes, who live la dolce vita. Their sense of entitlement is astounding, and the rarefied atmosphere in which they live, with all that money and power, has them believing they can do whatever they want, whenever they want, and to whomever they want, with impunity. Their expensive, A-list legal teams are always busy, both commercially and criminally, keeping the more disturbed members out of court, and their identities out of the media spotlight. The others tend to be more circumspect in maintaining the exclusivity and secrecy of the group, and its self-serving agenda.

"Some of the brightest and most capable are being groomed for positions in public office, or as government bureaucrats, which is preferable because they work behind the scenes, so the names and faces are not so well known. Aside from their group being chosen to rule the world, they believe everyone has a price, like a commodity, especially in big business and politics.

"And, as I mentioned at one of our meetings at the Citadel, they do use hired enforcers to do the street level work of rounding up and overseeing the trafficked victims. The Cadre members wouldn't be caught dead supervising and shipping twenty-first century slaves; it would be beneath their vaulted station in life."

"So, you're telling me we're going up against a group of delusional, elitist megalomaniacs, whose goal is nothing less than world domination, who use career criminals or mercenaries to do their dirty work for them."

"That sums it up nicely, 'Tas."

"When do we leave?"

"As soon as we can arrange it. If we go to Two Rivers now, in summer, we'll blend in with all the other tourists. You and I will take the truck and explore the area wearing our cameras and observing carefully. I'm certain we'll learn a few names, maybe locations. When we do, Matt Worth and Adam Holdrich will drive up with the new van they have equipped for surveillance operations.

"Arthur wanted to be a part of this, but everyone, including Lee, feels he would be too personally invested. We'll keep him posted on developments, but he needs to stay out of the picture; he needs to stay safe."

"Absolutely. I'll approach him about looking after Snugglebutt while we're away. She really loves him and she'll be good for him. I understand that Ken has taught him how to ride because of the addition of a couple of horses to the Citadel menagerie. That's good therapy for him, too.

"Plus, he's got his driving tests coming up. I know how important acquiring those licences is to him. Once he has them, he'll be able to do field work with us. . . on future cases."


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In the afternoon, we drove out to the Citadel to talk to Arthur. I was a little shocked when I saw him. He had lost weight, and his grief over his father's brutal murder had added a decade to his face. He was now nineteen years old, but he looked older. It was his eyes. They didn't look like those of a young man not yet out of his teens. Then I remembered whose eyes they reminded me of. I had seen the same look of loss in Frank Keeper's when I first met him. The suffering in them had resonated with me then, as it did now with Arthur's.

Henry and I told him our plan. He'd already heard part of it from Matt and Adam. Arthur had even helped them in fitting out the van with new, state-of-the-art tech equipment.

We took him to dinner at Haven's Haven that evening. He didn't have much of an appetite, but occasionally during our conversation we saw flashes of the young Arthur we loved, his enthusiasm, his sense of wonder, and, of course, his intelligence. They were muted by grief, and frustration, but I took heart in seeing they still existed. As we got ready to leave the restaurant, I impulsively gave him a long hug. It surprised him, but he didn't try to pull away. I released him and stepped back. He took my hand in a fierce grip.

"'Tas," he turned and looked at Henry, "and you, too. . .please find the person who murdered my dad. Find out why he was killed. I will have no peace until I know the who, what, where, and why of his death, and the girl's, too. Please!"

This time Henry stepped up and hugged Arthur. I could see him trembling. Henry just wrapped his arms around him tighter and let him cry. I provided the tissues for all of us. Then we took him home.

The next morning, we drove Snugglebutt and all her creature comforts out to the Citadel. Ken, Henry, Arthur, and I carried them to Arthur's apartment. More loving hugs were exchanged. Arthur was cuddling Snugglebutt when we left.

We gave information about our reconnaissance trip to Matt and Adam to pass on to both Lee and Frank. She was at the coast taking care of her yearly medical updates and examinations. Frank had taken some of his acquired days off from the drop-in centre to go with her. We thought it would take a few days, maybe a week, to check things out, record images, and learn more about the elitist group. With the garnered information, Adam and Matt would join us to make action plans, and begin pre-emptive strikes.

Henry and I returned to Haven Lake, packed up all the gear we needed, including his gun and permit, put the luggage into a secure space behind the front seats of the small, modified pickup, left a note for Iris Bloom at the shop informing her when we would be back, and contacted other local patrol volunteers to let them know we would be away on personal business for a couple of weeks.

Then, on a cloudy and sweltering summer day with a Humidex of 43 degrees Celsius, we drove out of town to the highway connection, and began our journey to Two Rivers.





Recognized


This book is called "Weapon". It is the sequel to "Thaumaturge". 'Tas has worked very hard to develop and strengthen her paranormal abilities. Now more confident, she will be more aggressive, as well as protective, in using her new skills. She is the weapon of the title.
Thank you, wallypete. for "Get Ready Guys -- Here It Comes", to stand in for hot, muggy weather in this chapter.
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