Fox and Sloth
Mr. Habari cursed as he paced through the shattered remains of the warehouse. A significant part of his plans were set back for some time. It would be very difficult i.e.: very expensive to replace what had been lost. He knew it was not an accident. The fact that the mines had been set so that anyone running to investigate would had been slaughtered led him to be assured of that fact. Two mines had detonated and had killed or maimed several of his men. Most importantly one of the mines had taken out two of his most trusted men. It would be very hard to replace them and very painful. One of them was married to his youngest sister. The cost of replacing the weapons and ammunition would be even more painful. Some of the items would irreplaceable. There would be no more of them. They would have to make do with inferior replacements. The U.S. mines were first on that list.
There was another fact that really bothered him. Whoever had hidden the dead guard had hidden them too well. The bodies of three of the guards were unharmed in the blast. The fact that they were killed by single shots to the head said a great deal. This had been a surgical strike. Somehow, someone had gotten the information about what was in the building. The strike could not have been planned better. The last delivery had just been made hours before and the first shipment out would have been early that morning, in fact one of the missing men who apparently was in the warehouse when it blew was making an inventory of what would have been going out. Something else really bothered his. The site was isolated deep in territory friendly to his cause. It was in his own country! The strike was made at a time to maximize the damage with a minimum of effort. There were a number of search teams out looking but nothing so far. Besides, the explosion had attracted the attention of people who it didn't want turning their heads his way. He would have to cut his losses and move his operation to another site. It would even further delay his time table.
He was worried for a short time about the meeting that would be held in just a couple of days in another town. But that was in a small mountain town where all were loyal. No one would be able to get within a mile of the place without being seen and shot. Several important men to his cause would be there and it was time for some money to pass hands. It would be the money that he had promised Brotherson for the nuke. Brotherson had sent him a message just that morning that he had a lead on a device. He required that Habari pay in full first and then he would attempt to purchase the item. Harbari normally didn't like paying upfront for anything but this was a special case. Brotherson's man would be at the meeting to pick up the money and to deliver some information from Brotherson himself.
Kim kept her breathing at a slow and steady rate. Slowly she raised her hands and placed them on her head. This was not the time to be rash. One, her captors were U.S. Special Forces from their weapons and dress so the local would not be any happier finding them there as finding her. Two, she and Ron had just blown up a lot of somebody's expensive play toys. They would be looking for someone to blame and a group of U.S. Special Forces would be high on the list of suspects. Third, the guy who spoke had to be from New York, you didn't get that twang and not live there a long time. So, she didn't think that she would be in THAT much trouble; at least not yet. But, she was an agent for another agency and she had been caught. She was sure that the men around her would want a lot of answers that she would not be willing to answer. The last fact that she had in her favor was that it was dark and she was wearing a bit of equipment. They may not know that she was a girl.
Her thoughts on that last fact went by in the wind when the other man with the first approached her from behind and started to frisk her none to gently. He hadn't gone far when his hands found certain parts that don't belong on a man. He swore quietly and stepped back for a moment.
"Jason, it's a girl."
The one pointing the gun at her hesitated for a moment.
"Girl, shimrl. Frisk her good and take those weapons. Watch it. She and somebody else just blew that place to hell and gone and took out a bunch of those guys. We'll have to see if Ed and Mark pick up the other one."
Kim pressed her lips together. So there were more out there apparently looking for Ron. She hoped that he would be a little more successful than she had been. The second man stripped Kim's weapon off and laid it on the ground behind him. He continued to frisk her and removing certain items, mainly her sidearm and the bag of explosives that she had in her bag. A swift kick to the back of her knees forced her to kneel on her knees. The man behind her spoke.
"That's it but I can't be sure."
The one called Jason stepped into her field of view. He maintained his distance from her and still had his weapon pointed in her direction.
"Okay now. It may be that we are on the same side. The fact that you just nailed that warehouse down there leads to that fact. Now just who are you and who sent you?"
Kim just glared back at him saying nothing and shaking her head.
Jason stepped forward another step when she heard some noise over his headphone even from where she was. The expression on his face told her that something was up. He placed one hand on the headset and maintained his aim on her as he spoke into his mike.
"Able one to Able three and four. Able one to able three and four repeat last transmission."
He waited for a few moments before he spoke again.
"Able one to Able three and four. Able one to able three and four repeat last transmission."
Jason glanced at the one standing behind her.
"Restrain her and then go find out what is going on."
Kim waited until the other one touched her. She was ready to spring her trap. The extra time that she had had helped her set up what she was going to do. The second she felt his touch she exploded into action. She did a split like she used to do as a cheerleader. The split dropped her below his hand as she flipped backward. As she did a handstand she spun hard with her hands and kicked even harder. The solid jolt that jarred her leg and the loud grunt told her that she had struck hard. She wasn't sure what she had hit but considering her kick would have been below the waist she could bet what she hit. She also didn't have time to count her victory. The other man was right there and while he has been concentrating on his radio that concentration would only last a second or two. She pushed off from the handstand to her feet then into leapt forward into a handspring. The other soldier could not shoot as his partner was in the line of fire. Kim struck him hard in a flying kick with one foot as she kicked his weapon out of the way with her other. He turned as the last split second and while she hit him hard he dodged most of the blow. Reaching up he grabbed for her and ended up getting a handful of the stocking cap she wore and a bit of her hair.
Grimacing at the pain of the lost hair she flipped back and struck again. This time he was not able to block the blow. He grunted and went to the ground as he gasped for air. Kim didn't wait for the other to recover any more. Pulling one of the little tricks Wade had made for them she threw the small ball to the ground. It exploded when it hit the ground with a soft poof. A dark cloud of smoke filled the air and the fine dust when inhaled would cause stun the senses for a second. It would be like she disappeared, which she did as quickly as possible.
She quickly ran from the area knowing the faster she cleared the area the better. They already had plans for what to do in case there was a problem. She headed for the alternate meeting place as quickly as she could. Reaching the outcropping of rock she settled into a hiding place. She had not been there too long when a hand came out of the darkness and touched her shoulder. Already ready being on a razor's edge she spun and struck out at the indistinct figure that had approached her. A thud followed by a familiar 'owwww' told her two things. One, she had hit her target. Two her target had been Ron. His voice came out of the darkness.
"Hey KP, I am on your side."
She turned and reached out for him.
"Sorry but not a smart thing to do."
His voice came back out of the darkness.
"Yeah, sorry about that, believe me SORRY about that."
He paused for a moment as his hand started to play over her.
She nodded realizing that he still had his night vision.
"Yeah, but had to leave a few things behind. Got some extra eyes?"
She heard him rummage through his pack and then felt him place the special goggles Wade had made in her hands. Placing the goggles on her face and turning them on, she faced him. His face came into view in the green haze of the screens. Even in the dark she could see he was a little disheveled and already sporting a bruise.
"How about you? What happened?"
He sat back on the ground.
"I was monitoring you and your mike picked up that guys voice. So I went to ground. That's when I spotted two dudes in the rocks just to my right. If I had continued on I would have almost stepped on them. Apparently they had seen me because they moved in my direction. I left my pack where I was and backed off a little. It wasn't long before they showed up. They took too much interest in my pack. I was able to put them down with the darts. Good thing they worked just like they did back at the Chateau."
Ron caught the look she was giving him. The darts from the Chateau came in three types. The first just put you to sleep. The second put you in bed for an extended stay. The third? Mourners please omit flowers. He shook his head.
"I just put them to sleep. I already figured they were friendlies but we didn't have time to chat. They'll sleep it off and be fine. How about you?"
Kim wiped her brow with the back of her wrist.
"Stupid me. I walked right into them. The next thing I knew I was looking down the barrel of a carbine with a very unfriendly face behind it. The New York accent was a dead giveaway so I just did what they told me to do. The other one frisked me and took most of my stuff. Apparently that was about the time that you met the others. That distracted the two with me enough for me to take them down. They weren't expecting a couple of cheerleading moves."
He handed her a canteen. She drank most of it and poured the rest over her face and the back of her head.
"One of them got a handful of my hat with some of my hair with it."
She felt Ron's hand run over her head.
"I can't really feel anything but that doesn't mean a thing. Let's get out of here before someone else joins the party. We have another meeting that we can't afford to miss and we need to rest up before we do. This was just a little note for attention. It's time to send a little sterner message."
Kim nodded as she reached over and took Ron's extra pistol from his equipment belt.
"Right! You take point for the first couple of klicks then we'll trade. We'll take path "c" back to base in case we get split up."
Ron nodded and headed off into the darkness. Kim glanced back the direction she had come from and rubbed the back of her head. She owed that dude a beat down for yanking her hair out like that. If she ever got hold of him again she'd pull some hair. She'd rip off his short hairs if she got the chance. Turning back the direction Ron had disappeared she moved off to follow.
Jason Cummings slowly moved his jaw from side to side making sure it was still a part of his face. It had to because it hurt too much to be gone. Bret shuffled over and slowly sat down across from him, his face gaunt and pale. He wheezed as he sat down. Jason winced. The girl; Jason still had a hard time believing it, had nearly changed Bret's voice for him. As it was he could barely walk. Danny and Macon were still groggy and trying to clear their heads. He didn't know how this would go over at headquarters. Four of the U.S.'s best had been taken out just a pretty as you could please. Danny and Macon reported that the other subject had approached their position before disappearing. As they worked around to find out where he had gone they walked up on his pack. That was the last thing they remembered until they woke up with really bad headaches.
He had called for backup after he got his team back together. They looked like they had been through a meat grinder. He and Brent could barely move from what the girl had done to them. Danny and Macon were still woozy from whatever had his them. The backup team arrived and picked them up and carried them back to their base. All of them were immediately taken to debriefing. Instead of being briefed as a team they were each taken to separate rooms. The questioning seemed endless and generally was concentrated on the two people they had run into. He had turned over the equipment taken from the girl and most importantly the stocking caps that contained several strands of the girl's hair. An intelligence officer had placed the hat and the hair in a plain paper bag and that bag along with the equipment taken from the girl was placed on a helicopter that disappeared quickly after taking off.
After the debriefing they allowed to see the medics, get cleaned up and get something to eat. After getting some rest they were told they were confined to the base until further notice. Major Johnson, their commanding officer, told them that they would need to participate in a special briefing in a couple of days after tests were done on the hair and the equipment. Until then they were free to walk around the base but they could not speak to anyone about what they saw. All of the team vowed that they would see the pair again and payback would be interesting. Until then they would wait. The vision of the lithe body of the girl hurtling toward him would not be something that he would soon forget. Nor would the pain of his jaw go away soon.
Kim and Ron huddled under some low bushes just below the top of a small hill approximately a mile from a cluster of homes at the edge of a small town. They had been hiding under the bushes for the last two days waiting for this afternoon. Two days of blazing heat during the day and two night of freezing cold had made their watch very uncomfortable and both would definitely need a good shower once they were finished. If they were still alive that is.
Kim uncovered the spotting scope and trained it over the area of the two homes. Ron checked the Barrett XM500 sniper rifle that he had jumped with and had lovingly taken care off. Right now it would be their main tool, with a little help from Kim's spotting. As he ran his check over his rifle his thoughts went back to the sniper school he had gone through. Regimental Sargent Major Taggart had taken extreme glee in torturing him during his time there. But in the end, Ron passed the course as he had all his courses. Taggart had called him his greatest student.
Ron checked his settings on the scope and pulled his gilley suit closer around him. With the covering and camouflage they were wearing someone would have to practically step on them to find them. At least until he fired the first time. The resounding boom of the fifty caliber weapon would notify everyone in the area that someone had just received a world of hurt and they would be looking for the ones who had dealt the hurt out. A touch from Kim turned his thoughts back to the present. As he looked through his scope he noticed two cars approaching the houses. He sighted in on the first one. Kim spoke softly as she watched through her spotting scope.
"You have a quartering wind from the left, about 3 knots. The temperature is 80 degrees. The humidity is 30 percent. Range to the door of the first house is 1542 yards."
Ron used his foot to touch her leg to let her know that he had heard her and understood what she said. When he had seating himself behind the scope he didn't like to move the top part of his body much less even speak. To do so could change his sight picture and at the range he was shooting that could be all the difference between a kill or a miss. He watched as the two cars pulled up to the homes and stopped. They knew their target would exit the second car from the side facing them. All they had to do now is wait.
They watched as the door opened to the house and two men came out of the home. They recognized them immediately. They were two of the top men in the group they were after. But they were not the target for today. One of the men walked around to the passenger side of the first car and opened the door. A very tall and very familiar figure exited the car. Ron heard Kim gasp when she saw the figure. It was Big Daddy Brotherson's man; the same one Kim had to face on the raid of Brotherson's home. If he was here then Brotherson had a big part in what was going on. Another man got out of the other side of the car. This man they didn't recognize. Kim used the built in camera to her spotting scope to take a number of pictures. But recognizing people and taking pictures was not why they were here.
Ron sighting in on the passenger door of the second car and waited. The door opened and the man they knew as Mr. Habari stepped out of the car. Ron sighted in quickly and started to squeeze the trigger. The instant the weapon fired Habari jerked forward to pick up something he dropped. Ron watched in disbelief as the bullet must have passed just over the back of his head and struck the man on the other side of the car. The impact of the bullet slammed the other man to the ground. Even at this range Ron could see the blood splash. His round had struck the other man in the chest. Kim cursed as she watched as the guards yanked Mr. Habari into the home as they surrounded the area. Brotherson's man just sneered at the sights and disappeared into the home. Ron spoke quickly to Ron.
"I think it's time to leave. I don't think we need to extend our stay any longer."
Ron nodded as he picked up his rifle as Kim picked up the rest of their equipment. They slipped over the side of the hill and disappeared into the rocks that littered the gully at the rear of the hill.
Mr. Habari struggled against his body guards as he forced his way back out of the house. He crawled over to the body of his youngest brother. This was the first big meeting the young man had earned the right to be at. Habari had been working with him to bring him along with his vision of the future. Now his youngest brother lay like a limp rag on the ground behind the car. The bullet that had hit him had been meant for him. There was no doubt about it. He heard the whip crack of the bullet as it passed just behind his head. If he hadn't dropped his phone the bullet would have popped his head like a melon. Now he was alive and his cherished little brother lay nearly blown in half by the bullet that had hit him. The single shot had reverberated throughout the small valley they were in.
The shot without a doubt came from the hilly area that the homes faced. There was little hope of finding the shooter. A shot like that had to have come from long range and the shooter would have exited the area immediately. Habari called upon the gods of his forefathers to grant him vengeance on the person or person who had killed his brother.
Just inside the door Mr. Brotherson's man dialed his satellite phone and spoke softly into it. He shook his head as the conversation continued.
Jason and his men stood around the small room where they had been asked to be. It had been a week or so since their mission in the desert where they met the couple that had put them down with ease.
Major Johnson walked into the room where the men were and motioned for them to have a seat. Another man in street clothes came in with him. The group exchanged glances. The other man had to be a spook. Major Johnson sat down at the table across from Jason and the other man sat next to him. The spook had file with him that he opened and pulled a number of sheets of paper and a few photos out. The Major looked at his men.
"Gentlemen, this is Mr. Brannigan. We believe he has line on the couple that you encountered the other night."
Jason rolled his jaw around a little.
"Encountered sir? We got our butts kicked by a little girl and some other people."
The man smiled.
"Have no second thoughts Lt. You may just get the chance to tell your grandchildren one day that you actually had to fight one of the finest agent teams in the world. This couple would put 007 to shame."
Jason glanced at the man and grunted. The man pushed some pictures toward him. They were pictures of two people about high school age. Then there were a number of other pictures that he could tell were taken clandestinely of the same people but they were several years older. Then the last two pictures were the greatest shock. They were copies of two ID's. The issuing group had been removed from the pictures but it appeared the people in the pictures had very high clearance in the group. It was the names that caused his eyes to pop out.
"WHAT? No way they…. they are supposed to be…."
The man nodded.
"Yes, we know. They are supposed to be dead. The hairs you so kindly provided to us provided proof. We were able to do a DNA match on the hairs and checked it against records. It was positive."
The Major looked around the room.
"Gentlemen, this must never leave this room. There are less than a dozen people who know this information. This mission and its results have been classified Top Secret."
The men gathered around and went through the pictures and the papers. Macon pointed to a picture of Ron.
"That has to be him. I never got a real good look at him but I am almost positive."
The spook nodded.
"If the young lady was there, you can bet that the other person was her."
Bret picked up the pictures for a moment then placed them down.
The spook sat back and poured a cup of water from a pitcher on the table.
"We aren't sure Sargent. I know this. These two were involved in stopping the purchase of a nuclear weapon from the former Soviet Union. While they were able to stop the sell the device detonated."
Brett broke in.
"I remember that. The story was that some faulty maintenance had caused it to blow."
The spook nodded.
"Yeah, that was the story but the real story was what happened later. You can imagine how the Russian Government felt. This almost caused a war. But cooler heads prevailed. Some over there wanted these two heads on a platter but they had enough friends to stop that. They had to agree to some terms but before the terms could be settled they "died"."
The spook waited for a moment, then started again.
"At least we thought they were dead. Their bodies, at least what was left of them were examined by the best pathologists. The results were positive. Except the DNA tests appeared to have been misplaced. They were buried with full military honors. The President himself gave the eulogy. There were no less than a dozen world leaders there, more than the last world leader funeral. I had to do some work at the Middleton Space Center for a few weeks after that. I worked close with the girl's father or at least what was left of the man at that point. Her family nearly came apart after that. I tried to help but what do you say to a father that has lost his daughter. The boy's family flat out disappeared. We found out later they immigrated to Israel. We closed our files on the two of them and marked it up to two lives ending before they should have. Then, in the last year or so a new counter terrorism team espionage team hit the ground out of the U.K."
The men had all taken seats and were listening intently.
"They were above and beyond anything ever seen. It was like they literally appeared from nowhere. We think they have run some pretty fancy operations. They have been credited with about a dozen KIAs, at least four of which were hand to hand."
The members of the teams glanced at each other. As long as they had been in their operations none of them had experienced that. Sure they had shot some of the enemy, but face to face? The man noticed the glances and continued on.
"They have also been credited with getting into some of the most secure places known and get out without too much harm to themselves. You got a real good glimpse of their handiwork when they took out that warehouse. They lived thorough explosions like that when they were teenagers. We dream of getting teams like this together. These two grew up together. They played together and cried together. They know each other to a point that they know what the other is going to do two steps BEFORE they even do it. I got to hand to it my friend in the UK. He really picked this one. SO! Gentlemen. Do not feel bad about coming out on the losing end of this little altercation. As well trained as you are I think you might have been outclassed before you even ran into this pair. Consider yourselves lucky that they recognized you as friendly troops. So they didn't kill you. They did make sure that you didn't bother them. But they could have just as easily done to you what they did to the guards of that warehouse. Congratulations gentlemen, you got your clocks cleaned by Kim Possible and Ron Stoppable. Known and loved by the world as Team Possible and now probably the most lethal and best kept secret in the world of dark ops."
Hi everyone. I hope that you enjoyed this chapter. The story continues. Please leave a review. I would appreciate it.