Forge Netting 32: Big Question

Trigger depressed, skull evacuated of contents. They stood around the body and they were each full of questions – he could tell because he was hyper-alert to it … why? Because he had questions himself.

He extracted the communication device from the dead man’s jacket; hit reverse dial and waited.

‘Who is this?’

‘You don’t need to know, Colin.’

‘Ah, but you know me it seems. I am intrigued. Another ghost walking through a world that wants to be done with dead men.’

‘I never died.’

‘I didn’t either, but both those things are an oversight. I’m here to finish my job – what are you here for?’

‘I’m here for the same reason I have always been here – ownership. Don’t worry, you won’t ever know who I am or what my purpose was in the things I did. You don’t and never did have clearance for that kind of thing. The only ones who ever had clearance for that were myself and one other.’

‘Ensign.’

‘I will neither confirm nor deny this.’

‘Don’t waste my time. I know what you are – I remember your face even if I don’t know your name. There is a big file on you and I read it all; you’ve been hidden for so long that the people who hid you are long dead and gone. I am sure that they never expected you to persist as long. I know you enjoy these stupid and sadistic games – this time you didn’t pick your pawn very well, did you?’

‘Or I underestimated you.’

‘Meaning you have some notion of who or what I am – suggesting to me that we have had some run-in before. It wasn’t in the file but with your kind of clearance and the amount of twisting you’ve probably done in your history, that doesn’t surprise me.’

‘A man who isn’t surprised when it comes to me is a wonderful surprise; quite novel in my experience. I wonder if the others will be quite so alert to the threat.’

‘Hmm, doesn’t take much guesswork to figure out who a controlling figure would try to take out in this game, does it?’

‘And too late for you to do anything.’

‘And who says I would want to?’

‘No one.’

‘Exactly. But the big question is what you intend to do with Ensign et al, and their counterparts.’

‘Yes, that is a big question, isn’t it. You will have to watch and learn like everyone else.’

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