The Krait's Sweet Kiss

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Mir
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The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Mir » Mon Feb 15, 2016 5:12 pm

OOC: Written with Foxx.

IC:
That was then.

The rifle was cold to the touch, something to be expected in the frigid winter of Mongolia. Her breath formed clouds as it escaped her mouth, partially obstructing her vision here and there. For the most part, she could see perfectly, which was what was required of her. Always do what was required of you, something that had been drilled into her head for some time now. Her training had been going on for years it seemed, but the forge had been hot and the metal willing. The hammering had been painful, and the water numbing, but the result was in the forged work that she was. Her grip on the rifle was resolute, the black metal of the Swiss Arms SG-11 rifle a stark contrast to the snowy land that surrounded her. Even her clothing matched that of her surroundings. Both her eyes were open, though only one scanned the known world.

The other was focused through the scope of the rifle, intent on tracking the prey.

It was a bear, one that she had been tracking for some time. Following it through the harsh environment of Mongolia had been particularly trying, in some cases. More than once she had thought that she had spooked the creature and that it would escape from her. But despite those close calls, she had managed to accomplish her goals, thus far.

The .50 caliber round would render most of the bear meat unusable, but that wasn’t to say that there wouldn’t be salvageable parts. She wasn’t as interested in that as the people who were with her. She was only there for the training. The learning.

The learning was everything.

It taught you how to be patient, how to wait. She had been waiting for hours, maybe even over a day, she’d lost track. But patience was something that something like this required. Without it, you were unable to find the right moment to strike. Impatience did not help her accomplish her goals and so it was unneeded, unnecessary. Her grip on the rifle tightened, her finger wrapping around the trigger.

The learning was everything.

It taught you how to have focus, how to allow a single, solitary objective to be the at the forefront of one’s metal process. She had been aitng for this bear for some time, and while patience had allowed her not to lose her mind, it was her will power that had given her the ability to prepare for the bear’s arrival in a fashion that brought merit to the task at hand. She had to remain focused during this time otherwise once the bear arrived, all the time that she had spent waiting would have been for nothing.

“Breathe.” The man lying next to her said, his eyes trained on the bear through binoculars. “Wait for your shot.”

“I know.”

“Be like a leaf, floating in the wind. You fall, you rise, you descend, you climb.” He said, as she mouthed the words along with him, words that she had heard for quite some time now.

Her foregrip on the rifle loosened slightly, as she let her fingers breathe for a moment. Then she tightened and closed her free eye.

Her finger squeezed the trigger.

But this is now.

Rachel Case was in a half-unfinished skyscraper of a building in a Middle Eastern country. Not the greatest of places that she wanted to be in, but one that she found herself for the mission she had undertaken. The contract was simple. A bullet, expertly placed, in the head of the target. The target was a high ranking member of the United States Department of State, someone with some decent level of clearance, enough clout to warrant a detail of bodyguards, and information that a certain bidder wanted. They had hired her services and that was something that didn’t come cheaply.

Her fingers tapped the ground as she waited, looking through the scope of her spotter binoculars. This was the end to a long day, but at the end of it, she had a hot shower and a cold beer waiting for her.

Thank God for both.

The line of cars came around the corner. Black SUVs, as was the standard here and she watched as they moved, single file, down the road. She knew what car the diplomat was going to be in and she knew exactly where she had placed the roadside bomb.

IEDs came in all shapes and sizes and even with proper training on how to pick them up, it didn’t mean that you couldn’t still get hit.

She waited a few more moments.

Detonation.

The third out of the five SUVs exploded in a brilliant display of light and flame. If she was the kind of person who admired her own handiwork, she would have paused to do just that. Instead, she held her breath, waiting for the next one. It came when the first SUV sped up, starting to barrel through traffic in an attempt to get the diplomat to safety. This triggered the next IED, the second stage of what the military considered to be a coordinated attack. Reaching out onto a small remote console next to her, she flipped a switch.

From two of the buildings on the road, windows opened up, and machine guns started to fire, peppering the remaining SUVs with rounds. Rachel had set the guns up some time prior. Two Russian RPKs opened up, 7.62mm rounds loading from two hundred round magazine boxes. The rounds were firing on one direction, and this was going to force the passengers to leave the SUV, which they did.

Triggering the final series of bombs that she had placed, anti-personnel mines that tore through the former passengers of the SUV, now passengers on the way to the afterlife.

Time for a shower.

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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Foxx » Mon Jun 06, 2016 4:31 pm

Rachel’s eyes opened as she woke. The rest of her body was still, as her eyes quickly adjusted to the darkness. Her internal alarm clock had shifted with the time zone change and she had woken up precisely when she had scheduled it. She waited a few moments, before rising from her bed and walking to the window. Though she wore only bra and boy shorts, she gave no thought to it as she opened the curtains. That was a beauty of being up on the thirty eighth floor of a high rise. Looking out over the city of New York, Rachel watched the traffic of the city for a while. There was a meeting to get to on her schedule, but nothing that was going to put her in any kind of rush.

Her movements were fluid as she made her way through the hotel room. Shucking the rest of her clothes, she stepped under the hot spray of the water, letting it hit the back of her neck. Eyes closed, Rachel surrendered herself to one of the luxuries of life. Too many people were wrapped up in minute problems, while there were many around the world who didn’t even have something as simple as running water, let alone hot running water for a shower. It was something that Rachel had been forced to do without during her long years in training.

As a result, it was something that she now appreciated, as she appreciated everything else that had been denied to her over the years.

When she was finished, she stepped out into the bathroom and wiped fog from the mirror. Her face was blank as she stared at her reflection. She could have been anyone. A businesswoman on a trip. A lawyer coming in town for a trial. Anyone but the killer that she was. That was part of her effectiveness, and she didn’t overlook it, not at all. Her reflection was blank only because it was a blank canvas, something that she could paint on and turn into anything she wanted.

She headed out of the bathroom, proceeding to get dressed. Her meeting was not one that she wanted to be late to. Downtown New York City had a lot of traffic to navigate through and she wasn’t looking forward to it. Patient though she might be, Rachel was decidedly not patient when it came to other people.

Soon she was dressed and in a taxi, on her way to her destination. The meeting was in a high rise skyscraper and with some very important people. When she reached her destination, Rachel checked in with security at the lobby, going through a metal detector. Which was pointless considering that she wouldn’t have brought any weapons with her on her person, not to a meeting like this. Anyone coming to this kind of meeting should have expected that kind of treatment.

The elevator ride up was short and sweet, and when the doors opened, there was a woman waiting for her.

“Welcome, Ms. Harper.” The woman said. “We’re glad that you were able to make it.”

Lisa Harper smiled, stepping forward. “I’m glad I could be here. I wouldn’t have missed this for the world.”

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Mir
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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Mir » Fri Jun 24, 2016 11:22 am

The Ops center of Vanguard was the central hub of a system, a nervous system, which ran throughout the whole building. Just like a brain, it had many rooms, many compartments, and Sarah Gray was in one of them. She was leaning back in a chair, staring up at a bank of computer monitors. Displayed on the screens was footage of an attack transpiring in the Middle East. A well planned out complex attack, whoever had done the attack had utilized incredible foresight. Her eyes took in the explosions one more time. Turning, she looked at the other person in the room with her, a man who looked like he did not take advantage of the Vanguard provided gyms scattered throughout the building complex.

“What do you think?” She asked.

“It’s beautiful.” He replied. He reached a hand out, grabbing hold of a ball mouse. Scrolling and clicking, he stopped the footage, rewinding it and playing it again. “The angles are just right to take advantage of the up armor plating that was used on that vehicle design. Whoever did this, they knew what vehicles the convoy was using, the route they were going to take.” He said.

“They knew the TTPs.” Sarah said to Dewar.

The lanky analyst nodded and gave her a grim smile. “This wasn’t the work of some extremist group. It was too precise, too controlled.”

“They’re capable of that.” Sarah replied. “These aren’t goat farmers who are trying to destabilize the region. It’s a fairly organized group.”

“I think Dewar got a bit ahead of himself.” Talon Strega said, and Sarah turned to see Caliber walking into the room. He gave her a quick smile. “I think what he meant to say was it was a perfect setup.”

Dewar nodded. “Yeah, see here?” He asked, and zoomed in the camera feed. “These are Russian RPKs. The insurgent groups in the areas all use them. The IED that was deployed, from the scraps that were recoverable, it follows the trend of what’s being used in the area.”

“You’re not convincing me this wasn’t a routine attack.” Sarah replied, looking between Dewar and Caliber.

“It’s too perfect. Too well thought out.” Dewar said. “You have to remember, the route was changed the previous night. The insurgents, assuming they were going to plan this, they can’t crack a SIPRNet like that, and they definitely don’t have people on the ground in the embassy to get that kind of information. That level of tradecraft is beyond them.”

“The attack itself could have been planned by the insurgents, sure.” Caliber stated. “But the fact that the attack itself happened at all is what he’s calling into question.” He paused as Sarah turned back to the monitors to look at the feed one more time. “Listen, so Gracie boy wants you to work with Nolan on this one. She’ll be here soon.” He said.

Sarah turned, frowning as she grabbed her coffee cup. “For starters, does he know you’re using that nickname when you talk about him?” She inquired, giving Caliber an innocent look as she stirred her coffee. “Cause you have to know he hates it, Streggie. Secondly, I dropped the red white and blue outfit so that I could work more in the shadows, it doesn’t make much sense to have Nolan on this. I’m sure there are more important things out there for her to do.”

“Well….Director Grace does not know that I use that nickname given to him by Nick Fury. I’d like to keep it that way. Director Grace also felt it appropriate that Nolan’s first job have her work hand in hand with the former American Dream. Also, who doesn’t like the American Dream going to work in the Middle East?” Strega asked with a smile. “Smells like victory to me.”

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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Foxx » Sat Sep 24, 2016 6:35 am

Rachel’s toes flexed. She was perched on a chair in her hotel room, toe flexing foot on the chair itself, other foot extended outwards and on the floor. Her eyes moved over the screen of the laptop computer on the desk in front of her. There was a news article about the massacre that had taken place in one of the myriad of skyscrapers that made up Manhattan. No firearms had been used, but every person in the room had been killed. The police were currently stumped, but NYPD wasn’t really equipped to deal with something like this. They’d already called in the FBI to see what they could find from the scene and what expertise they could lend to the situation. It would be some time before they were able to figure anything out and by then, she would be out of the country.

A woman with no home was a woman who called everywhere home.

A little bar flitted across her screen for a moment, alerting her that on her private email server she had received a new message. Exiting her browser, Rachel started the process of setting up the proper encryption to allow her to access her information with impunity. Someone in her position could never be too safe. Any number of global policing organizations were looking for information such as this. All it took was a stray piece of data, a fragment of a megabyte, and any of these organizations, if they were worth their salt, would have more in the arsenal to use against her.

Staying one step ahead of the storm was how you stayed dry. Rachel thus far had been able to stay rather dry. There were a number of attacks around the world that she was fairly certain no one knew she had done. But at the same time, Rachel had to believe that there was a case file on her in many of those organizations. It was maybe more paranoia than anything else, but that paranoia was what would keep her alive.

The message was brief and Rachel frowned as she surveyed the contents. It was another job, another target. The pay was fine, that wasn’t the problem. It was the location. It was the same location as her most recent job before this one in New York. Rachel rarely liked going back to the country of a job so soon after a target had been eliminated. The investigation was still going on, there were still news media there, depending on the attack. If there was one thing she didn’t like it was more eyes on the area she was supposed to be operating within.

It was obvious from the request that there was pressure on her to take the job.

The organization that she contracted through didn’t often times try to flex their muscle when it came to the jobs she took. While they would have preferred she take some jobs and dismiss others, they generally let her be, merely taking their commission for putting the people who needed the work done in touch with the operators such as Rachel who were more than willing to do the job for them. Rachel liked that set up. She liked the status quo. But something was going on here and she wasn’t sure what it was. The money wasn’t it, though the fee offered to her was much more than would have been justified for something like this.

It was time to place a phone call and speak to her contact within the organization.

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Mir
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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Mir » Mon Oct 10, 2016 9:30 am

“You didn’t want to wear the uniform?” Sarah asked, as she set her duffel bag down on the inside of the QuinJet.

“I figured the Stars and Bars are a little conspicuous for the Middle East.” Nolan replied, looking up from the magazine she was reading. Both women were dressed almost identically. Black leather jacket with a black shirt underneath. Black jeans and black boots. Both had their hair in a pony tail. The only difference in appearance, outside of facial features and overall body size and composition, was that Nolan’s boots were heeled and Sarah’s were flats and that one was a blonde and one was a brunette. “Didn’t seem like the right message.” She added.

“The uniform gets a little annoying after a while, I won’t lie.” Sarah said, adjusting the aviator sunglasses she wore. She dropped into a seat on the other side of the jet, so that she was facing Nolan. “It’s already bulletproof, shock resistant, fire resistant, reinforced by some random alloy that Paul and Emma Matthews cooked up. But why they had to make it skin tight, I’m not sure.” Sarah said. “You should probably make some design changes. But that’s just my suggestion.”

Nolan smiled. “Any advice is good advice as far as I’m concerned. Especially from someone who carried this thing before me.” She said.

Sarah’s eyes shifted slightly to her left. There, in the seat next to Nolan and resting against the back of the seat, was the shield. The same shield she had carried during her tenure as the American Dream. Unmarred despite the years of service, the shield had been a part of her, an extension of her body. Rarely going anywhere without it, Sarah had spent a few sleepless nights after she had first given it to her cousin, Brian. It had taken some getting used to, but she was okay with it now. “It may be a weird thing to say, but I think that thing has a mind of its own.” Sarah said.

“Like it’s conscious?” Nolan replied, eyeing the shield.

“No, no, like it can be your conscious, if you let it.”

“That’s fair.” Nolan said.

Sarah looked to her right and lifted an eyebrow. “You can come on to the jet, you know.” She said.

Dewar stood there, with a roller suitcase. He was staring at Nolan.

“Hi.” Nolan said, waving her hand as she smiled at the man. “Are you okay?” She asked.

Dewar shook his head, trying to clear it, as he closed his eyes for a second. The lanky and awkward analyst dragged his suitcase up the ramp, having definitely over packed in comparison to the two women. He stopped again once he got on board, not sure of where to sit. Sarah patted the seat next to her and Dewar followed the guidance, settling down next to her. He did his best to avoid looking at Nolan, who for her part started intentionally staring at Dewar because it was almost comical how uncomfortable he was with the whole situation.

Before Sarah could say anything to figure out just what was causing all the weird tension for Dewar in the first place, Duncan walked onboard, setting a similar sized duffel bag down on the ground before talking a seat next to Nolan. “Great, everyone’s here. We’ll be leaving in a few minutes.” He said. “Now, remember, we’re going to the Middle East where they don’t treat women with the same hippie liberal freedom we do here in the civilized world.” Duncan said. “So be prepared for some fun times.”

“As long as it’s better than the other fun times I’ve had with you.” Nolan said.

“Dewar, I ever tell you about the time I made Nolan go undercover as a stripper and had her damn near naked, inside of a cake, as a stripper cake girl?” Duncan asked.

Now that got Dewar’s attention.

Sarah grinned as Nolan first glared and then closed her eyes, wincing as Duncan started to tell the story. It was going to be a long flight.

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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Foxx » Tue Nov 29, 2016 3:06 pm

Rachel’s hands twitched. She hated traffic. The jeep she was driving was open air, but that didn’t help, it only annoyed her further. Allowing yourself to be an open air target was one of the stupidest things an assassin such as her could do. It flew in the face of all logic to her, but she had to do it. The damned airport hadn’t had the right car for her. Now she was stuck in traffic on her way to an appointment. Back in the previous country, she had spoken to someone higher up than her and had gotten the information that she needed to take the job. That alone was making her itchy and this traffic wasn’t helping her. Her eyes were shielded, behind sunglasses and she closed them, thinking back to a warm night in Morocco years ago.

“Patience is not just a virtue. It’s a way of life.” The man said to her.

She was struggling, under the weight of many bricks, placed on a wooden plank laid over her back. Rachel was in the plank position herself, sweat pouring from her body due to the temperature and the strain of what she was doing.

“Patience is what allows you to see what others don’t. You have the time to examine the world around you and understand what is going on, what can happen, and what will happen depending on how you act.” He said, taking a two by four that had seen better days and whacking her on the thigh with it.

This caused her to buckle slightly and she dropped, trying to keep herself up.

Part of the problem, of course, were the hot coals that she was struggling to keep herself up aloft over.

“Patience, Rachel. Patience.”


Her eyes opened, behind the polarized lenses and she looked out over the traffic jam. It looked like it was starting to move and that was always a good thing. Finally, she saw the cause of the hold up. There was some sort of diplomatic convoy of SUVs that needed to get the right of way. In the distance, she could see the cavalcade of vehicles and she recognized it for what it was. It was not unlike the convoy that she had hit a few weeks ago in this very country. Some people never changed their TTPs, despite what happened. This country was one of them. The Americans that were here, military advisors, they were not going to be up to the task if a civil war broke out.

A civil war was dangerous for everyone involved, and America could not afford to be involved in another foreign war. Even though the Chrell Invasion was two decades ago, the snowball effect of the damage to the world’s economy could still be felt. The great American experiment was still the strongest and wealthiest country in the world, by far, but they could ill afford being reckless with how they projected that power. No one in the administration would want a civil war.

Unfortunately, if she went through with her contract and completed it, a civil war was one of the more likely outcomes.

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Mir
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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Mir » Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:25 am

On board their cavalcade of SUVs, Sarah took off her sunglasses and turned to Duncan, shaking her head at the man who sat next to her in the SUV. Dewar and Nolan were in the row behind them.

He shrugged. “It wasn’t my call.” He said as she opened her mouth to speak. Duncan knew what Sarah was bothered about and knew his response wasn’t going to make her happy either, but it was all he had to offer her at this point. “They wanted to do this, and after the attack how was I going to argue with them?” He asked.

“By pointing out that we’re traveling in the exact same style of convoy that was hit in that terrorist attack.” Nolan said and Sarah’s eyes widened, pointing at the other woman in obvious agreement with Nolan’s assessment. “The government might think its projecting power, hell the commander of the U.S. military advisors on the ground might think they’re projecting power, but they’re only showing off that we didn’t learn anything.”

“Not learning, in a region of the world like this, that’s dangerous.” Sarah said, turning back around in her seat. “Besides, there are only four of us. Even with our equipment, we didn’t need five cars.” She said, looking out of the window as the country side passed them by. Moving through the desert at break neck speeds, they were barely able to see anything around them, hurtling at close to a hundred miles per hour. But everyone around them could see them.

They stuck out. Their presence was announced.

“This is just a fact finding mission.” Dewar said. “We don’t have the authority to do anything else, right?” He asked, and Duncan nodded. “I wonder how much of what’s left we’ll be able to get our hands on. We can’t only be here as a show of force.”

Nolan sighed. Dewar was clearly an optimist.

This country’s wealth came from natural resources, oil. If the government didn’t look to be strong and in control, then it would lose the people and if it lost the people it would lose the oil. That was one of the reasons why the American forces on the ground were not actually called by their proper titles, but “military advisors” instead. The government refused to look like they were not the ones in charge of the progress of the country. With the way that the militant attacks were starting to ramp up, this was not a good thing, because they were outmatched and refused to let the Americans help more. The problem wasn’t the equipment or the training, it was the dedication. No one would be more dedicated than people fighting for home and hearth, thinking they were right and in some cases, thinking there was some deity on their side.

The governmental forces couldn’t rise against that, their level of apathy was much higher. It reminded her in a way of what was happening in a country in Europe, Morvania. While the situations were different, there were still a lot of striking similarities. Her eyes lazily moved over to where Duncan was, and she stared at the back of his head for a moment. “I didn’t ask this before, and I should have now that I think about it. There isn’t going to be a problem with the fact that Sarah and I are women, is there?” She asked. “Director Grace told them he was sending women, please tell me he did.”

“Director Grace told them he was sending women.” Duncan calmly replied. “But I can neither confirm nor deny that any such conversation actually took place. You did ask politely though for me to tell you that, so I thought I’d oblige.” He added.

“Oh God.” Nolan said.

“Dewar hardly notices that you’re a girl, Nolan, it’ll be fine.” Duncan said.

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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Foxx » Mon Jul 10, 2017 6:12 pm

Condensation was already forming on the side of the glass, running down the length of it. The stopper wasn’t yet in the glass carafe and already the heat was at work, trying to raise the temperature of the glass’ contents. Rachel accepted the glass graciously, her fingers wetting, her body heat adding insult to injury. But maybe that was a weird metaphor for this country. The water, which had been cold, could change in an instant. Maybe faster than the fabled New York Minute. She watched as the servant stepped away from the sitting pair before turning her attention back to the man sitting on the divan across from her. He was dressed in the traditional garb of these parts, and he fit in with the majority of the male population with his beard and well-groomed appearance.

They were sitting in an elegant lounge of sorts, in a restaurant owned and operated by the man she was to speak to. Many people were in the room, some sitting on divans and eating, others smoking hookah. There was a little bit of conversation that wafted around the room, just as there was smoke from the hookah that did as well.

A man in a corner played an oud.

He gestured that she should begin and she smiled. An intentional deference to the foreign born woman. An interesting move to say the least, it wasn’t one that was unexpected. She took a sip of the water and began. Better to get this over with so she could see to other arrangements.

“Thank you for agreeing to see me, especially on such short notice, Nasser.” Rachel said. “I wondered if the intelligence you had procured for me in the past was the quality needed, but then again, the results were what they needed to be.” She said.

Nasser nodded. “Had I known what the results would be, I’m not quite sure I would have gotten such detailed information. But, as you know, in our line of work, if someone is willing to spend the money required, well, they get what they’re looking for.” He took a sip of his own glass of water. “But now you are back, and you want more information.” He added. “I do not know why I should help you.”

“Do you think the money will be any less good?” Rachel asked.

“No, I do, but I wonder, what is your purpose here in my country?” He asked.

Rachel shook her head. “Now, Nasser, you know the rules. When you ask questions, you get answers. Sometimes the answers aren’t ones you’re going to be comfortable with. Better to not ask the questions at all.” She said, with a small smile over the rim of her glass. “Can you give me when I’m looking for?” Rachel asked.

The man sitting across her paused and considered, running through the options in his mind. After a few moments, he finally shook his head. “I don’t think I can.” He said. “You see, I can tolerate foreign born operators in my country, doing what they wish. Money is money. But I cannot tolerate people trying to destabilize my country. I am one of those who live here. You….you all come and you go. I’m the one who has to stay and try to put the pieces back together, just in time for you to come by with your bat.” Nasser said. “No, I don’t think I can help you.”

She nodded, shrugging. It looked as though she would have to get her information elsewhere. “It was something I considered a possibility. I can’t fault you for wanting what you want. If I found myself in your position, I would want it too. Thank you for your time.” Rachel set the glass down, and rose, starting to walk out of the meeting room.

“I’m afraid that our meeting is…not concluded.” Nasser said, as the conversation suddenly ceased and music came to a halt.

Well this was unfortunate.

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Mir
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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Mir » Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:25 am

Nolan toed the sand with her boot, squinting despite the sunglasses she wore. She looked down at the ground, shaking her head. This was an incredibly complicated attack that had been executed in a short amount of time with obviously devastating precision. It had required planning, a lot of it. They were trying to figure out just who it was who had pulled off this attack. Unfortunately, it looked as though they were going to be stonewalled by the local authorities. She turned to where Sarah was standing, her hands on her hips surveying the scene.

“Not much we can tell from here, huh?” She asked, and Sarah shook her head. “I guess Director Grace didn’t think it would be such a big deal for women to be part of the investigative team.” Nolan said.

“No, Brian didn’t because it shouldn’t be an issue. But this is a different part of the world. He should have thought of that.” Sarah replied. She spied Duncan leaving a group of the local authorities, starting to walk over to where they were, outside of the caution tapes. “Well, what’s the story?” She asked.

Duncan sighed. He knew what he was going to say was not going to make either of the two women happy at all. “I’ve been able to get you guys access to all the files and documents that have been made on the attack. You can also interview witnesses and bystanders, with supervision.” He said.

Nolan pulled her sunglasses off of her face and stared at Caliber. “You’ve got to be kidding me.” She said. “We can’t inspect the actual evidence?” She asked.

“This is a sensitive time for everyone right now, Nolan.” Duncan replied.

She looked back at Sarah, who was closing her eyes.

“We’re not analysts, like Dewar is.” Sarah said and Duncan put his hands up, in a don’t shoot the messenger style of defense. “Well if you know that, numb nuts, get us on the inside. We’re going to be able to provide a perspective that Dewar can’t, that’s the whole reason we’re here.” She said. “This is already a cold scene. We have to be able to…who do I need to talk to?” Sarah asked.

He laughed. “I don’t think it’s that simple, Sarah. Listen, let’s let Dewar do what he needs to do and see where that takes us.” He said.

Nolan folded her arms over her chest and turned around, looking down the road and at their vehicles. There was a crowd of people near them, not too many. Locals who were interested in knowing what had happened, and probably more interested in the Americans who were on the scene and surveying everything. She could see the women wearing hijabs and holding their children tight. She could understand the pain they were going through. They wanted to be safe, and having American forces in the country was probably not what they wanted to begin with. Nolan just wanted to do her job and find out what had happened and who had attacked the convoy.

“Fine, let’s see what Dewar comes up with.”

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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Foxx » Thu Mar 08, 2018 5:58 pm

Rachel sighed, running a blood covered hand through her hair. She was going to need a shower later, but that was the least of her worries at the moment. Her eyes darted upwards, as a painting fell from the wall and collapsed onto the ground. While one could have been worried about the state of the painting due to the drop, the canvas had been, in fact, riddled with bullet holes. Better to spend one's time thinking about other things. Worrying about other possibilities. Her eyes slowly moved back down. Rachel was kneeling on the ground, her left knee deeply embedded into Nasser's left bicep. She flexed slightly, knowing that the weight and the pain that it would cause was nothing compared to the rest of the pain he was experiencing. But she needed to continue looking around the room.

There was smoke in the air still, but no longer the smoke of hookah. It was the smoke of dust mixed with gunpowder. The room was silent; no one had been able to start the music up again. Though there were a few moans and groans from the wounded and dying that created a background noise for what was to come next. There was something to come next. Bringing her upper half back around, Rachel rolled her neck as she did. Not just a shower. No, it was going to have to be a hot shower. Work out some of this stress. She looked down at Nasser, whose eyes were fluttering as his body tried to fight his brain.

His brain was sending signals to shut down due to the over firing of nerves and the metaphorical damage reports being sent up from the vital organs. However the organs themselves were still fighting, trying to hold on. Maybe there was a glimmer of hope, a shot that life could be held on to. He was making gurgling noises a little, as his blood filled his lungs. Sucking chest wounds were not fun. She reached over him to the knife that was to his right, his eyes tracking her as she did.

"You can still breathe." She said. "You can still talk." She said.

Her eyes were still looking around the room.

"I c-can't..."

"You just did." Rachel replied, robotically. "Nasser, you can survive this. You can go on to have a long life. It'll hurt when it rains, but you'll be able to hold on to your kids."

With a shaky hand, he lifted it upwards and pointed to a part of the wall that had remained surprisingly intact.

"Thank you." She said, rising and tossing the knife to the ground. Walking over to the wall, she leaned in, and placed her ear on the surface of the wall, tapping lightly. False wall. Now they were getting somewhere. Looking around for a way in, Rachel saw that it looked like she'd have to put some muscle into shoving the wall off its tracks to get it to start.

About to do so, she had a change of mind, looking over her shoulder to where Nasser was. He'd turned himself over and was pushing himself up off the ground with one arm. His other arm was pinned against the ground and, truth be told, the fractured forearm and wrist was going to make pushing off it a no-go. Walking back over to him, Rachel grabbed and hoisted, ignoring his strangled scream of suffering. "You pulled the gun on me." She said, pulling him towards the wall. "It's not like I wanted to do this to you."

"Said I'd live." He managed weakly.

"True, but I didn't qualify the statement as to what I'd do with you. I only said you can survive this. You can." She said and shoved her free shoulder into the wall.

Sure it jostled him a little bit, unsettling already unsettled bones, but that was a risk she was willing to take.

The wall slid apart.

she tossed him into the room, roughly.

His eyes went wide and then closed. He knew what she'd forced him to trip.

The two concealed shotguns fired.

Well that ended that.

Rachel stepped over the smoking corpse of Nasser and into the room herself. There were more than a few nifty looking things in the room. It was a collection of sorts. A few pieces of artwork, a little marble statue. There was a computer, with a collection of hard disks. Interestingly the computer had been set up to be able to take the hard disks as if they were the old floppy disks. Rachel found a bag and opened it, putting the hard disks into the little duffel. On shelves against the wall, there were a few lock boxes that had the keys in them.

Turning the locks, she opened them and smiled, looking down over at Nasser's remains. Inside the lockboxes were a bunch of small 10 oz gold bars, with the mark of different mints from around the world. There were some from Credit Suisse, others from The Perth Mint, and still others from APMEX in Oklahoma. She reached into the boxes, clearing out the contents into the bags.

"Thanks for all your help." She said to room at large, before reaching into her jacket for her sunglasses. Time to see what was on these disks.

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Mir
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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Mir » Tue May 01, 2018 8:13 pm

Nolan stared up at the ceiling. She was starting to go stir crazy in the holding area. They had been housed in some kind of old gym, hastily converted to house them. The group had set up on a bunch of cots. It was clear that while they had been invited to the country, they were still not that welcome. The politics of the country were not something she was strong on, nor was she that familiar with American involvement in the country.

But she could tell when she wasn't wanted. Maybe it was the general sense of danger that came with having American forces in the region. Maybe it was the more traditional form of Islam practiced by the people in the country. Regardless of what it was, she wanted to do her job. That’s all she was there for.

It didn’t help that the air conditioning in the gym was broken and the temperature was approaching sweltering. Nolan was sitting on her cot and she reached down onto the ground to grab the plastic one-liter water bottle. The water itself was not cold at all, however, it was the best she had. Taking a long swig from the bottle, Nolan looked up as Sarah walked into the room. The other woman had been in the shower, the only thing that could help to beat the heat they were dealing with.

She spied Nolan and walked over to her, draping a towel around her neck. Beads of water were on her arm, and Nolan couldn’t tell if it was water from the shower or sweat that was already appearing.

“How’s it going?” Sarah asked, sitting down.

“Fine.” Nolan said. “Just…” She said and trailed off.

Sarah grinned. “I know,” She said with a nod. “It’s frustrating. I’m guessing no word from Dewar yet?” She asked and it was Nolan’s turn to nod. “Hopefully when he gets back, he’ll have something. They’ve been at it for over a day now.”

“How did you deal with this?” Nolan asked.

“What do you mean?”

“Dealing with problems in the system?” Nolan asked. “There has to be times when you were part of the Thunderbolts and just with Vanguard in general that you were frustrated with the system.” She said. “With….” Nolan said and trailed off before gesturing, bottle in one hand, cap in the other, “With all of this.” She added.

Sarah drew one of her knees to her chest, moving back a bit on the cot. She looked away for a few moments, before looking back at Nolan. “Yeah.” She said. “Yeah.” She repeated. “Bureacracy is a bitch, that’s for sure. There are days you can’t believe that you’re in a position to help people but you’re being denied it.” She said.

Sarah looked down at the item that was underneath the cot. Nolan tracked her eyes and she realized what Sarah was looking at.

The shield.

Their thoughts were interrupted by Dewar and Duncan walking into the old gym.

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Foxx
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Re: The Krait's Sweet Kiss

Post by Foxx » Fri Aug 03, 2018 5:48 pm

The air was cool and crisp. Desert air. Dry and arid, it was refreshing in its own way. Rachel kept on toweling her hair as she stepped out onto the balcony of her hotel. She overlooked downtown in the capital city. Leaning on the balcony, she looked out at the city. Parts of it were still alive, though for the most part it slept. This was not a city like New York or London, where there was activity all the time. No, these people slept. Undoubtedly, their subconscious was at work, sorting through the stimuli of the day and making plans for the future. Rachel was doing something just like that too.

Destabilization was a tricky business. It required a wide amount of leverage applied at different focal points. Everything had to work precisely at the right moment otherwise the whole thing could topple the wrong way. Luckily for her, the request hadn’t been for destabilization in a certain direction. Just the general creation of chaos. There were easy ways for her to do that, but she still had to be sure of what she was doing. This was where the information on Nasser’s hard drives had come in handy.

She already had a working knowledge of the country and the different power players. The country’s government was shaky. There were rebels and instigators all around. This was why the Americans were here in the first place. The Department of State official she had killed had been touring the country on a fact finding mission in order to determine whether it made sense to commit more forces to the country. The newspapers were calling for more boots on the ground in order to combat the threat.

Little did they know the threat was going to become even bigger.

Sitting down in one of the seats on the balcony, she poured herself a glass of wine from the bottle she’d opened and let breathe while she was in the shower. Taking a sip from the glass of red, Rachel reached out with her free hand and took one of the 10 oz gold bars she had sitting on the table and weighed it in her hand.

Destabilization cost money. Luckily for her, she had acquired a bit of a war chest.

She could give the gold to some of the rebel groups. It would help them to afford better armaments via the black market and they’d be able to better fight the government. That was definitely something she could do. Alternatively, she could use it to bribe members of the government, and accomplish her goal that way. There were options and the question of what was the best one was what she was trying to tackle first.

Rachel took another sip of the wine.

Maybe it was best to spread the money around. She had a sizable amount of gold to work with and she could apply it in multiple directions to accomplish her goals.

There were more than one ways to skin a cat. Why not try them all on for size? As long as one of them worked out the way she needed it to, Rachel didn’t care how it got done. Her organization did not look well upon failure.

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