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High Level Investigation






Gatherall, Yr209

     Detective Peacekeeper Sorren paced backwards and forwards in his bedroom. Trouble was on his mind. He came to the window and gazed out into the midnight sky, the moon hiding behind the hazy clouds. One of the perks of his rank was an apartment high up that could see the sky if you looked at the right angle. In his case he was lucky enough to also see the harbor from the other window, a rare double treat among the high level apartments on this side of the city.

     How should he tell the Church about a possible invasion? It wasn’t a subject he could just bring up casually.

     Sorren went over to the other window and looked down into the harbor. Somewhere out there the Barrier was broken. He'd been checking his eScreen, constantly searching the archives and real-time data streams for any hint of a weakness in the forcefield, but nothing was coming up.

     Could the creature have been lying to him? It seemed to be genuine, though, and Sorren had made Detective because of his good instincts with people. Sure, this was a mutant rather than a street informant, but his gut said it was telling him the truth just the same.

     He went back to his eScreen. He'd searched every open case file he could find, but some files and data sections were still above his I.P. code. He sat down and closed his eyes, rubbing his temples. Itself, many times. Angry. That was what the monster had been telling him.

     Sorren shook his head. Gatherall was a testament to the willpower of humans to survive and come together after a tragedy like the War. How could it so easily be ruined? In the eyes of the all-powerful Church, the Barrier was indestructible – it was a matter of faith and beyond discussion. The righteous hearts of the bishops kept the city safe from the horrors outside, and could never be broken by any invader.

     Itself, many times. Angry. Invasion.

     Sorren looked over at the eScreen.

     No.

     Could it really be that simple?

     He moved over and picked it up, listing all the classified Barrier files. He had to know, and was willing to risk everything to find out. He pulled his I.P. datacracker out of its hiding place and clicked in the word 'invasion.' The eScreen flickered as it processed huge quantities of data, chunking through protective algorithms and decoding the files. If he was caught, this was the end of him. But he had to know.

     Torturous minutes passed before he had his answer. And when it came up, he almost wished he hadn’t looked.

     Someone from the inside was weakening the Barrier.

     Sorren watched in horror as his eScreen began to display page after page of secret information from the Church’s own archives.

     They created this haven, he thought, so why would they want to destroy it? The thought was quickly followed by another.

     They’ll kill me if they find out I know. What do I do now?

     Sorren put the eScreen down on the desk and let it continue downloading. He walked over to the window again. The moon had come out from behind the clouds, and he let its light calm him. After a few moments he’d made up his mind.

     He had to get to the people responsible and stop this. He wouldn’t get any help, not from the Church and not from his fellow Peacekeepers. Just the same, millions of people were relying on him, even though they didn’t know it. Sleeping peacefully in their beds, there was nobody else to protect them, not now. The eScreen told him that it had finished downloading.

     The truth would be his battleground. Information his weapon. He walked over and scooped up the device, heading for the door with sudden urgency. He’d been wrong before. There was one person who would help him, and he needed to get to the confinement tanks. Inside, there was a mutant who was the key to all this. Sorren started planning a jailbreak.



     3 of 4 in a series of short tales by Eric Kahn, set in the Elements realm of Gatherall. You can go back to the first part by clicking here, and go to the next part by clicking here.

     You might also like to check out these other series by Eric: Dash To Chokoloskee, The Old Frontier Ain't What It Used To Be, Times Can Be Tough and Trouble In The Water.


Realms > Mortal Realms > Elements > Gatherall
Art > Short Story


Created by: 24.58.220.125. Last Modification: Thursday 25 of June, 2009 21:34:11 UTC by MMK.

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