I have made the decision to take one of my micro flash fiction stories and flesh it out into a serial. The story that I chose to do this with is “Where Do We Go From Here?” (https://theworldofflashfiction.wordpress.com/2012/07/14/where-do-we-go-from-here/) . I have no idea how long this serial is going to be. It will have some twists and turns, and it will end when it ends! Enjoy!
Scene: Trinidad/Tobago, in the Caribbean. An office building in downtown Trinidad, where a private elevator services the top three floors. We are listening in on a conference room on the third floor, where several people are seated around an oval table, laptops in front of them. Represented are three high powered, very discrete private organizations whose job it is to monitor the goings on in the political world. A well known, well respected individual appears on the laptop screens. Formerly with the CIA, he is founder and CEO of the Berkley Group, a privately funded International group that monitors everything from terrorist alerts to monetary crisis. His name is Jean-Michel Bertrand.
“I want to thank you all for a job well done. Each of you in your own way has played a very important part in this story. I am going to speak in very general terms. Several different organizations are represented here – they will debrief their own people.”
There was quite a bit of tension in the room, with everyone trying to remain calm. The last 48 hours had been hair raising, including a couple of minor snafu’s within the organizations represented. Each organization was a law unto itself – for them to work on a cooperative venture was a huge step forward.
Bertrand continued: “A brief background on this mission, and how it dovetailed with all three of your organizations. There has been chatter for over a year now about an unknown terrorist group. This group has been very deep into the shadows of international terrorism. We knew three things for certain: (1) they were based in Europe, (2) the leader was a female, and (3) their efforts were focused on simultaneous strikes in Europe, Africa, Asia, and North and South America. As information came through to each of your groups, it was acted on, and cells were taken out. When it became evident that there was an endless stream of money coming into this group, your groups began sharing information, as the threat was too great for one group alone to handle. The Berkley Group has acted as a clearing house for this information. That is our purpose, and we were happy to do so.”
“Karl, under the shadow of working with the think tank that is the Koenig Foundation, you cover largely the UK and central Europe. The Koenig Foundation, did an excellent job of recognizing the threat that this terrorist group presented. The information that was shared was crucial to shutting them down in Europe. It was touch and go, but the mission was accomplished.”
Karl sat quietly, closely watching Karin. Was she the allie that she was purported to be? He hoped that her friendship with Annie was genuine, for Annie’s sake. As far as working with her … that might not be a problem, as her work was based largely in the US., and his was based in Europe. That was one of the very sharp edges to the game … who do you trust, even when they seem to be on your side.
Karin was watching Karl and the others. She had not made the auspicious start to her new position that she thought she had. She was going to have to back up and regroup. Coming to Trinidad herself, in disguise, was the tipping point that had netted them the head female terrorist. No one but a woman disguised as a man would recognize another woman disguised as a man. However, in doing so without letting anyone know, she had created new problems. She hoped that she was going to be able to continue her friendship with Annie. For her, this was a connection with the “real” world, which in her line of work was sometimes tenuous. Hearing her name spoken, she brought her focus back into the conference, and the man on the laptop screen.
“Karin, your role was a difficult one. The Centre For International Policy (a think tank cover organization in the UK) posted you in the U.S. as a liaison between themselves and Creed Ltd., a deep undercover group that runs covert operations. It is hard for international groups of this nature to share information, and even harder for them to back each other in an operation. It is clear that not enough information was shared over this latest terrorist threat. The Berkley Group will be conferencing with the heads of the organizations involved to see how to prevent a large scale snafu like we almost ran into here from happening again. There is no reason that this had to happen. Your individual debriefings will cover this.”
“As you all know by now, Annie’s father was deep undercover for the Berkley Group. His death, and her mother’s, was highly questionable, but we were never able to find out exactly what happened. This is why the surveillance equipment was placed in her home. It was a standing request between her father and I, should he die under questionable circumstances, as he did.”
“Are there any questions?”
There were no questions (each individual wanted to debrief with their own organization, so too much information was not given away). Laptops were closed, and everyone stood up, shook hands, and quickly left the room.
Karin was headed to the UK, for a private meeting with her bosses, before she headed back to the U.S. Karl was headed to the safe house, where he would pick up Annie, and they would have lunch and go sight-seeing. They would be shadowed by his people, but it was safe. The threat had been averted. The female terrorist had not given up easily. In the end, she had been killed. They would monitor chatter closely for a while, but he did not foresee any lose ends.
Annie sat in the living room of the safe house, sipping coffee and gazing out the window. She understood Karl’s world … after all, it had been the world of her father also. She also understood why he had waited until he asked her to marry him before telling her what he could about his job. She had watched her mother deal with this all of her life. She knew that she could handle it. She also knew that the Berkley Group, at the request of her father’s friend Jean –Michel Bertrand, had done an extensive investigation into Karl’s past and present, sharing only what she needed to know. Whatever life brought them, it would be a life spent together. She hoped that Karl would be okay with her continuing to be friends with Karin. That was a touchy subject, and she would take his lead.
As a reader, do you see this as a plausible scenario? Do you think that it could really happen? Even if you think it too far fetched, I hope that you have enjoyed it!
© September 2012 Bonnie Cehovet