Forge Netting 27: Regroup

‘377567473821.’

‘Liberte.’

‘HQ?’

‘Yes, Eustace. It’s me, Berry; time to come home.’

-*-

A package? What the fuck did it mean? He had to get home and open it. It had been so long that he had been doing this he almost creamed himself to actually have a tangible response to the question he had been scrawling.

His home had been an arena that played to his frustration; now it was audience to his incredulity. A recall – he looked at the magic eye picture and wept tears of joy. Following the message a purpose would come hot on the heels. Pinkerton was revitalised.

-*-

Fielding finally got something that kicked her memory into over-drive. Berry had been stringing her along all this time, which was fun. Fun was done with and now was the time for serious work. It did not take long for her to shrug off the mousy librarian shtick and start looking like her good old self.

Something in the stride; something in the purposeful look in her eye; something about the weapon strapped between her breasts.

-*-

Teschner, the head of the team, an message later, was emerging from a building he had been locked down in since this whole thing had taken off. He wondered whether the rest of them were as apprehensive as he was. Maybe they didn’t know the subtext of the activation

-*-

Standard deep cover rejuve job was on the cards for all of them. All of them reactivated, and for what? What was there that they could do in this world? In order for the kind of work they did to actually have some kind of effect there needed to be an order in place that they could exploit and work against; what was left that even vaguely resembled that?

‘So, Teschner, what are we all here for? Why send the reactivation code?’

‘Berry is the one with the skinny.’

‘Ah, don’t give me that shit.’

‘Pinkerton’s right. We all know that Ensign is awake, so what’s the dealio?’

‘Eustace, you should remember that whenever he is in action the rest of us are there as a control mechanism.’

‘That is one weird control mechanism, Teschner. We’re all killers, all programmed to walk around wiping memories, all barely there personalities, and we are supposed to control a blank psychopath with an unknown agenda?’

‘Control? Fielding, what the fuck is wrong with you? We’re a support network that controls him in the sense that we keep him focused and running.’

‘Oh, we are, eh? Shells to be programmed waiting for a programmer?’

‘Well, you responded to your activation code, didnt you? Your brain feels like it has been rewired too right? Want a purpose? Be on mission. We’ll track the bastard down and we’ll either stand next to him or taake him down; end the whole thing one way or the other.’

‘Sounds like a plan.’

‘Or a program, eh, Fielding?’

The laughter in the room was empty and hollow.

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