Accession: CATU Book 5 Ch. 12byJoeBarnosky©
Stone and Dupree touched down in Sydney Airport fully rested and ready for the next leg of their mission. As soon as their feet touch the tarmac they are met by two well dressed men. They quickly notice the bulges from beneath the men's jackets where their shoulder holsters sit.
"You are the two CATU agents sent here are you not?" one of the goons asks.
Neither Stone nor Dupree are overly shocked to know that someone knows who they are. After the attack in Siberia things were already starting to become less shocking.
"We are," Stone answers stone faced.
"We would like you to come with us," the same man says. He doesn't show any form of a threatening tone other than his overly sized body. Both men look like professional body builders and have the overall bruiser look to them.
"You're asking nicely?" Dupree asks with a hint of curiosity.
"Mr. Flosadottir doesn't want to make a scene and would rather this meeting be one of mutual interest," the second unspoken man jumps in to say.
"Lead the way then," Stone replies. He gives Dupree a quick smile then follows.
Sam stands at the railing looking over the side of the oil platform into the frozen water below. The oil platform is serving no other purpose other than to hide what it purpose truly has. She smiles to herself at the thought. Typheryian had told her they were to rule over the humans and the humans could not resist because of the power of the Asura.
So why hide from them?
She suddenly feels a hand on her shoulder and the smile quickly fades. She hadn't heard his approach or phasing in. Strange.
What has you puzzled my child?
Typheryian. He always called her his child. She is used to it but she can't remember why.
"I can't remember my past except for these images that come to me in flashes. But I can for some reason remember you as if I had known you for my entire life."
That is because you have been destined to become what you are and your destiny is entwined with mine. In time your memories will return but just remember that is all in the past. You are no longer human and you must embrace what you are now.
Typheryian says it with such conviction that it hides any and all bias against her and demons that are not Asura, especially Marids. Typheryian and the Asura look down very much upon Marids and Zombies. Such were vile creatures far too tainted with their human side.
He views Sam the same way. And though she is now fully a demon, she would never be considered so by the Asura. To them she will always be a Remnant. But even with Sam's past she is still very much needed, especially because of the life she carries inside her.
"Then what about this baby, my child? And who is the father?"
As I have said, it does not matter. That child makes you more powerful than you can imagine. I will show you how to slow down the gestational process and you can spend millennia with the child. Together we will usher in a new world.
A world without you.
Sam suppresses the thought the moment it enters her mind. Typheryian surprised her everyday with something new with his abilities and what he knew of her. It was too hard to find the thin line that separated the two. For all she knows he could read minds.
The elder demon smiles at her. It is a knowing smile, but if he is able to read her mind, she can't be sure.
At some point you will think it wise to turn on me because your power will become so great. But do not fail to realize the Ternion will always be united as one force and if you succeed past us you will have to face the entire Asura and not even an Ancient can endure long against an entire race.
Sam nods while averting her eyes.
Now you have some things to learn before the next phase.
Agents Stone and Dupree are taken immediately from the airport by helicopter out to sea where after a few minutes of flight they land on the helipad of a super yacht called Cephalopoda.
Once they are landed and before the rotors even begin to whine down their escorts push the door open and climb out. They walk ahead to the edge of the platform where a set of stairs leads down to the deck and wait for the two agents to exit.
The yacht is an impressive sight. Dupree is the first to comment on the fact. "Now you see, if you work hard enough you can have one of these."
Stone looks at her and laughs. "Maybe if I became the owner of Microsoft."
Dupree laughs. Their two escorts remain stoic and only turn in response once the two agents reach the edge of the platform. Stone and Dupree are lead into the giant ship past a pool and into an expansive room filled with furniture, a bar, pool table and several other pieces of décor furniture and electronics.
Stone lets out a low whistle. "Sign me up."
His partner elbows him. "Let's be serious we may not leave here alive."
"Would be kind of stupid to invite us here just to kill us," he replies. "Besides at least we'll die with a little excitement."
Dupree opens her mouth to counter when Baldur Flosadottir's voice cuts her short. "Welcome aboard the Cephalopoda Agent Stone and Agent Dupree," he says with a smile.
He is tall and broad shouldered and every bit human looking as one can be. Through both agents' implants they feel something similar to those with the Second Sight ability. If not for the implants neither would have taken the demon standing before them as one.
"What can we do for you?" Dupree asks taking a diplomatic lead.
"I would have to ask you the same question," he replies broadening his smile into a grin. "Pleas have a seat." He motions to a comfortable, high-backed couch.
Stone ambles over to the couch prompting Dupree to follow.
"Mr. Flosadottir, we—" Dupree has begun when the demon's hand comes up prompting her to stop.
"Please call me Baldur." He walks over to the bar and pours scotch from a very expensive looking container that glimmers like crystal. "Drink?"
"Sure," Stone answers. Dupree shoots him a look and he just shrugs and mouths what?. Dupree rolls her eyes.
"And the lady?" Baldur prompts.
"None for me thank you," she answers still using a diplomatic tone.
Baldur returns with two glasses. He hands one to Stone then takes a seat opposite of the two agents. "What do you think of my home?"
"It's very nice and I'm sure quite expensive," Dupree says looking around the luxuriously decorated room.
"That it is," Baldur says with a crocodile grin. "It also runs off both solar energy and hydrogen fuel cells and at four hundred and fourteen feet long it can use quite a bit of energy. I have all the luxuries I need here including two helipads, one at each end, two submersibles in the berth and side hatches at the water line for jet skis."
"Impressive, but I doubt you brought us here give us a tour of the boat," Dupree says with a bit of edginess to her voice.
Stone frowns at the remark. He finds it interesting what all was aboard at the demon's disposal. If Baldur is at all offended by the remark he doesn't show it. He only smiles which makes Dupree think he is playing a game with them.
"You are right," he says sighing. "I guess I like to show off a little."
Dupree gives a false smile and continues. "I guess you know why we are here, but how did you know who we were?"
"I knew you were not of the Black List because I could have a sense of you had you had Second Sight. That leads me to believe you are of the supposed nonexistent CATU." He takes the glass to his mouth and swallows the entire contents. "What I don't understand is why CATU seems to think they need to send two agents out here. I mean it is not like there is any terrorist activity going on."
"Actually it does seem your facilities and transports are being attacked," Stone informs Baldur as if he has forgotten all about it happening.
"That has not been determined to be coming from such sources. Besides we have our own internal security," he explains it away, waving his hand through the air dismissively.
"Apparently they aren't doing their job," Stone says trying hard to keep the chuckle out of his voice.
Baldur's face reddens briefly. "I handle the shipping of our products and supplies and I oversee the security. Do not presume to know our affairs."
"What my partner meant to say is that we are concerned for True Group. It does after all provide a service for the people and your technology could be destructive if in the wrong hands."
Baldur's eyes flash an unnatural color for a second. "Do not play games with me Agent Dupree. I know why you two have come here and I am giving you my hospitality to give you the opportunity to leave and go back where you came from."
"And if we don't?" Stone asks as he sits up straighter.
"Then you will live to regret that decision," he says simply. There isn't any malice or a threatening tone in his voice.
"It would be awfully strange two agents go missing shortly after visiting one of the owners of a major conglomerate in the mists of so much scrutiny," Dupree states still using a calm and collected voice.
Baldur simply smiles. "That is a chance I am willing to take." He stands up and walks back to the bar and begins to pour himself another drink, this time not bothering to ask if either agent wants another. "But what would not seem too strange is a couple of agents belonging to a organization that no longer exists disappearing while investigating terrorists for a company that is being plagued by said terrorists." He turns around in time to see the look on both agents' faces when they realize they have been matched. "My men will take you back to land. I trust you will be able to find your way back home from there."
Once Stone and Dupree arrive back on land, in nearly the exact spot where they left previously in the helicopter, they find a small café just outside the airport in town that gives a nice view of the ocean beyond.
They contacted Grines the moment the helicopter had left and explained what had taken place once they set foot in Australia. New information was given to them and they received new orders.
"So how are we going to get back on that boat undetected?" Dupree asks between bites of her jumbo shrimp.
"Didn't pay any attention when Baldur was bragging?" Stone replies with a smile. He stuffs two large shrimp in his mouth and continues. "I love Australia. They have such great shrimp here."
Dupree frowns. "Didn't you ever learn to not talk with your mouth full?"
"Okay, so I wasn't drooling over the details like you men do." She sits back in her chair and takes a sip of her drink. It is some kind of fancy drink with an umbrella the café offers. It has an abundance of alcohol which is just what she needed to take the edge off.
"I figure the best time is going to be at night. Naturally he won't expect us to just leave."
"So we rent a small boat and some scuba gear. You're not scared of sharks are you?"
Dupree's face pales slightly. "You're not serious are you?"
Stone can't contain the laugh that comes out. It causes a frown to emerge onto Dupree's face and after a moment he is finally able to stop laughing. "This is Australia, shark capital of the world." He spreads his arms out wide to add effect.
"Then I vote we not go swimming."
"Don't worry Mel, I won't let any bite you," he says with a laugh. "Seriously though, we take the boat out probably halfway then go overboard. From there we swim to one of the side hatches for the jet skis."
"Sounds like you have it panned out but how do we get in," she asks.
"Simple," he says then he points out toward the ocean. Dupree follows his finger out until her eyes settle of the Cephalopoda. "A patrol leaves every thirty minutes scanning the area for about fifteen minutes."
"I guess the CIA taught you something about spying," she remarks, clearly impressed by his skills.
"Something along those lines."