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Stories from the Verse
Chapter 60: Brown 125
Table of Contents
Previous chapter: Chapter 59: Slade 109
The ruse seemed to be working. Anyway, the guards had not aimed weapons at him. He continued walking toward them.
“Greenberg. I’m sure that was the name--Doctor Greenberg? His office? Do you guys speak English?”
At any moment they were going to realize that he should be a prisoner, but he had gotten close enough now that he was pretty confident of his ability to hit them--neck, face, hand, somewhere uncovered, or where he was sure the point would penetrate.
Standing within reach of the nearer of the two guards, he suddenly flung his left-hand dart at the face of the other, and then with his right hand stabbed the point of the second dart through the pants into the leg of the nearer. Both gave startled shouts, which he realized he should have expected, but the near one was collapsing already from the drug, and the far one was staring at the dart stuck in the hand with which he had protected his face. Not the way I expected it to go, Derek thought, but probably good enough. In seconds, both were down.
A muffled voice called from behind the closed door to this office. It had a question inflection, but the words were unclear. Derek turned to call Jim, but the soldier was already coming his direction.
“Pick it or kick it?” Derek asked, and Jim paused.
“Despite what you see on the tele, doors like this are not easy to kick, and we get only one try. How quick to pick it?”
“We could blow it.” The new voice was Pete. “I still have that plastic explosive from that trapped door we disarmed, and I can detonate it pretty quickly. It might be faster than picking it, more certain than a kick, and will give us more of an element of surprise.”
There was of course the possibility that whoever was behind the door was already headed forward to investigate the cry; that the door had not yet opened meant that they were not hurrying to do so, but they might be preparing for a fight. Derek looked at Jim, and nodded. “Go for it,” he said, and went to recover his gear.
It took Pete about half a minute to arrange a ring of the putty-like explosive around the knob, after which he set up the detonator. “Stand back, maybe ten feet, and be ready,” he said. Then he touched a wire to a battery, and for an instant it was all noise, smoke, and debris.
There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with twenty other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #235: Versers Infiltrate. Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter. It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.
As to the old stories that have long been here: