"What do you plan to do… after this is all over?" Joe asked me. I sighed and smiled seductively at him.
"Classified," I teased. The way he was looking at me was too cute. He leaned closer.
"Yep, classified," I repeated. Then he kissed me. Just like old times.
Just like old times. I fired my gun and leaped off the building, wincing as I had to use my injured arm.
"Renegade!" My codename rang in my ears. "Are you with us?"
"I'm here," I spoke into my comms unit, "but I'm a little-" the shadow leaned over the building and I tried my best to sink into the shadow beneath the windowsill, "-trapped!" I whispered. The attacker dove for me and off the edge of the building. "Sucker!" I yelled after him, but I wasn't quite in the clear yet. The second attacker leaped after the first like a lemming, but grabbed one of my heeled boots on his way down. I yelped and managed to land a good kick in his head on the way down, but that didn't help me much as I was still free-falling. "Hey, Indiana, now would be a good time to help!" I screamed into my comms unit, the ground approaching me much faster than I would have appreciated.
"On my way," Lia answered. Lia Thomas, my former roommate and forever best friend and partner in crime. She earned her nickname from her hero, Indiana Jones (who, personality-wise, she bore a great likeness to. I wonder sometimes if watching those movies too much had an influence on her current persona). Suddenly, the awnings emerged from the buildings. "Thanks, Li- Indiana!" I rolled onto the first, somersaulted onto the second, and landed on my feet in the cobblestone road. As soon as I landed, I went into pavement-artist mode, hiding in plain sight. I thought of my former brother-in-law and the skills my niece inherited from him. Cammie's last words to me rang in my head:
Don't be a ghost this time. Go do what you have to do, but don't be a ghost, okay?
Unfortunately, ghost was what I did best. The only person on this planet who could beat me at ghost was Ghost herself: Jana Garcia, granddaughter of the famous Agent Garbo and my second of three partners-in-crime.
"Ghost, Renegade and Indiana moving through the market. We've got a tail on one of the subjects. Can you do backup?" Jana's voice crackled in my ear.
"I've got your back, Renengade." She always did.
"Visual on subject number two," Katie Norman, Goldfish, added. The child of two navy seals, Katie had earned her stripes as Goldfish for sure. "He's at the pier, and appears to be getting ammo from an aid."
"Visual on primary subject," Lia returned with a little more emphasis, "Headed towards the pier, as well."
"Ghost, rendezvous at the pier," I spoke into my comms unit.
"Yes, Renegade." I slipped into the crowd, a complete and utter ghost among the people.
"Visual on Goldfish and the subjects." I spoke. "I'm coming from the south."
"They're getting back on their boat," Katie said.
"Damn pirates," Jonny spoke. None of my roommates really appreciated Jonathan Sorenson's company… that is, except for Katie, who had really grown on him (and, admittedly, though Kate would never admit it, vice versa). "Renegade, Ghost, are either of you in a position to intercept their boat?"
"I can try," I pulled a bobby pin out of my hair. I was lucky to find a jetski tied ever-so-carelessly in a square knot. I pulled it free of the rope and hacked the ignition, starting up the machine and rocketing off after the pirates' motorboat.
I know being a pirate sounds all fun and dashing, Captain Jack Sparrow-y and so on and so forth, but I promise you that modern-day pirates are truly nasty business. And not one yet has reminded me in the slightest of my favorite movie characters. I heard a yelp of pain over my comms.
"It's Renegade. Ghost, where are you?"
"I'm here, fine, Goldfish?" She replied.
"All's good here. Where's Indiana?" Silence.
"Indiana?" More silence. I twirled the jetski around, headed back for the docks.
"You took my skidoo!" Somebody on the docks was apparently waiting for me.
"I'm a government agent," I warned him, "I did what I needed to do. Thank you, by the way!" I called as I raced up the pier. Panic was building in my blood. "Indiana, can you hear me?" Nothing. "Ghost, Goldfish, last visual on Indiana!"
"Underneath the pier with the aid," Kate responded. I swung myself off the pier, hovering above the sand, pebbles, and seaweed. I switched off my comms and felt safe to whisper, "Lia?" I felt somebody behind me and whirled around to face a very nasty looking man. I switched my comms back on as I landed a perfect roundhouse kick to his face to a storm of, "Renegade? Renegade! Where are you, Renegade?"
"I'm under the pier! Shark, where are you?" Jonny wasn't nearly as deserving of a fish name as Kate, but right then it didn't matter. "Shark, I could use some help!"
"Coming!" Behind the bad guy, I saw a slim man drop down with catlike silence. I almost marveled at Jonny, but not quite.
In any case, marveling or not, Jonny happened to save the day by bashing the aid's head with a piece of driftwood. "Where's Lia?" He asked in person. I shrugged, trying to look nonchalant, but he easily sensed my fear. I found myself wishing he were Joe.
"What happened? God, I feel like hell!" I moaned, waking up in a strange room.
"You went through surgery," Rachel stood over my bed, holding my hand. "I can't believe you took that bullet!"
"It's my job, Rach," my voice sounded like it hadn't been used for days, which, I guess, it probably hadn't. "How's Cam?"
"So worried about you," my niece's supposed worry shone through my big sister's eyes. "First thing she asked when she came-to." I smiled in the knowledge that someone actually cared about me. Then I looked up and broke into a full-faced grin.
"Why are you here?" I asked sarcastically. Joe looked more worried than even my sister. He took my hand and pursed his lips in worry. I remembered Istanbul, and thought about reminding him before he interrupted my train of thought with-
"You took a bullet," he told me (like I didn't know!).
"Like I was just telling Rachel," I grinned at him, "It's my job!"
"Indiana! Indiana, are you there?" I almost yowled into my comms unit. I looked around, remembering everything I'd learned in my years of being a spy. I saw familiar footprints underneath the pier. A closer look at the prints revealed to Jonny and me that they were, in fact, Lia's prints. We followed them and watched them grow sloppier and uneven, dragged through the sand, until we found her passed out, her blood soaking into the sand around her head. "Shark and I found Indiana," I whispered through the comms unit. "Get back here. North side of the pier. She's going to need some help."