Excerpt from the Book
Hammer and Vadar stared down at the hospital
bed, as did Walter Plack. They were in an underground hospital never
seen by civilian eyes. It was a hospital for people who did not exist:
high-profile operatives, witnesses, or prisoners who could not afford
to be recognized. Though the facility wasn’t so large in size, it was
one of the best in the country, specializing in treatment such as topweaponry
bullet removal, “torture recovery,” and blood loss.
“Please explain to me again how this man got anything whatsoever
out of his sock,” Plack growled at the guard.
“Like I said, we were escorting him to the toilet. He sat down
on the bucket and leaned over. I thought he was tying his shoe until
I saw him reaching in his sock. I yelled for him to stop, but by the
time I got to him, it was in his mouth. I hit him, but that didn’t stop
him from swallowing it. Then he got this sick look on his face, and
about two minutes later he slumped over onto the floor, unconscious.”
“No one searched him before he was unchained from the chair?”
“We searched thoroughly for weapons. Even in his mouth. The
pill was attached just under his ankle. No one saw it until it was too
“You’ll have to excuse us, gentlemen, but we’ll need a moment
alone with him,” Vadar announced.
Plack left with the guards and left Vadar and Hammer alone in
the room. From of their bags, they pulled several medical apparatuses
and then lifted the patient’s gown. They did not have anything that
would restore life to the prisoner, but it was the next best thing.
“We must work quickly,” Vadar instructed. “We don’t know
what was in that pill.”
They attached the devices in their designated spots and activated
them. Upon activation, tiny needles from the devices inserted themselves
into the captor’s skin and began to extract DNA chromosomes. Vadar
carefully placed a dark, strange medical mask over the patient’s face.
“Twenty over forty,” Hammer read from the gauge of one of the
“Tube one, 50%,” Vadar murmured.
“Tube six at 90%,” Hammer read from another of the gauges.
“Bio is too high; he won’t make it,” Vadar announced. “Let’s
grab the goodies and get out of here. This stuff gives me the creeps.”
“It’s not the highlight of my day, either,” Hammer countered.
After a few more minutes, all the tubes were filled, and the device
gauge beeped twice. Vadar and Hammer quickly deactivated the
devices and returned them carefully to their bags. Both men left the
room together and told Plack to find out what was in the pill and to
contact them on the ComLink if the prisoner pulled through. They
both knew what the pill was designed to do, and thus, they also knew
that the chances of the prisoner’s recovery were slim to none. The
captured terrorist who bombed the cruise ship would be pronounced
dead within hours.
Sparrow wasn’t terribly fond of truth duty. It meant verifying the
aliases of AEGIS, her covert special-ops team members. At given
points in assignments, it was necessary to save the life of the agent in
play. Like today, too much was at stake. They had set up a meeting
with the man who had had foreign diplomat Epifanii Yuklivitch
assassinated on the White House steps, billionaire elitist Gary
Klingner. Klingner had agreed to set up a meeting with Felix and the
liaison to Amerus, the team who had executed the hit. The cover
story would be that Felix needed to hire them to steal some priceless
artwork. The real story was that Amerus struck fear into the heart of
the Oval Office, and AEGIS had been cleared to use any methods
needed to find them and stop them. This included hiring them to steal
artwork, then once they came out of the shadows, killing them. It was
a possibility that Gary’s Klingner’s contact would ask for verification
of Felix’s identity. Someone would call the number on his business
card or drive by the location that was listed as his address or employ
other concise research methods to check the person out and confirm
the veracity of the person’s identity. “Truth duty” was what AEGIS
had nicknamed this responsibility.