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Authors: Barlow,M

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BOOK: Legacy Of Korr
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Odd reaction, considering they requested a meeting with an officer. But from what she gathered, intelligence agents in Egypt had unlimited powers. Going into the building uninvited was a death wish. She could fight her way in, but first she had to get Hala to safety.

“This is not working,” Alissara said.

“Don’t give up.”

Alissara grabbed Hala’s arm and walked away until they were far from the gate. “You need to leave. I’ll fight my way into the building.”

Hala’s eyes widened before she shook her head. “You don’t have your ship.”

“I don’t need it. The defenses are intense, but my shield will hold. Go before you get hurt in the crossfire.”

“Please don’t kill them. They’re just doing their job.”

“I won’t,” Alissara said, smiling. She watched Hala’s wide eyes narrow and her shoulders slump. “I will come visit you. I promise.” She gave Hala a hug and watched her leave in reluctant steps.

Alissara walked to the gate, tore her dress, and threw away her scarf. The guards’ jaws dropped when they saw her armor. Their surprise turned to panic once she hovered in the air past the gate.

The guard that dismissed them earlier reached for a red button next to the gate and pressed it. She activated her defensive shield and waited for the defenses to kick in.

Sirens sounded, and within seconds, the entire building was on lock down. Armored vehicles and special forces soldiers in combat gear armed with guns and rocket launchers rushed to the gate. In the distance, two defense towers emerged from the top of the building.

Alissara watched everything unfold from her high vantage point. The soldiers fired their weapons. The small, metal projectiles bounced off her shield. She hovered, untouched.

They fired rockets and grenades. Armored vehicles locked on her and fired heavy rounds and heat-seeking missiles, enough to level a small town. The smell of smoke and explosives filled the air. Pressure knocked her around from one side to another, but didn’t take down her shield. Again, Alissara hovered, invincible.

Two helicopters left the roof of the building. Under heavy fire cover from the defense towers, the helicopters headed her way. They fired bullets and missiles. Blinding flashes of light and deafening sounds, but the only thing they accomplished was taking out a few trees. Her shield was impenetrable.

At the top of the building, an old man in a black suit rushed to a small helicopter. Alissara ignored the noise and focused on the man and the two guards who accompanied him.

She recognized the Director from the Agency’s secure network she accessed earlier. Alissara ventured above the large trees and the smoke toward the building. Bullets and grenades followed her until she landed on the flat roof behind him. She blasted the two guards away with a strong power wave which rendered them unconscious.

“May I have a word?” She asked, her voice loud, but calm.

The Director froze with one foot inside the helicopter and one on the roof. When he realized he couldn’t hold the position for much longer, he swung around to face her. He was calm, but she knew it took all his willpower to hide his crippling fear.

“Who are you, and what do you want from me?”

She glanced at the vehicles and helicopters, doubling back to the building. “I’m Alissara, and I don’t mean harm. Now, please have your soldiers cease fire. They’re drawing attention.”

His face was pale, and he clasped his chest with his right hand. He must’ve realized she wasn’t human.

“Are you dying?”

“I’ll let you know in a minute,” he said and leaned against the helicopter. “I’m Nader.”

She chuckled and watched as he masked his fear with a nervous smile. He picked up his phone and ordered the soldiers to cease fire. Alissara closed her eyes in relief. The last thing she needed after the noisy Metro was a performance of the Royal Egyptian Gunfire Symphony, featuring three extra loud helicopter.

Did he realize they were chatting on the roof of the building? Or that he leaned against the escape helicopter?

“Can we talk somewhere more private?”

“Forgive me, yes.”

A few minutes later, Alissara sat in a comfortable chair across from the Director in an area attached to his spacious office. Everything from his desk to the art on the wall was nice and expensive. The Director himself was quiet as if he was trying to digest what had happened, or maybe he was skeptical if she was an alien. A fact tough to swallow, but her appearance and technology left no place for doubt.

She broke the silence. “Your office is nice.”

“Thank you,” the Director said. “It’s government issued, except the artwork on the walls. Would you like something to drink?”

“No, I’m fine.”

“If you were human, I’d say you’re in your twenties.”

Alissara smiled. “Close, I’m over a thousand.”

His jaw dropped. “You’re kidding.”

“We have long life spans.”

He was at a loss of words. “I have so many questions.”

She examined his well-built body. He’d aged well. “How strong is your heart?”

His eyes narrowed, and he clenched his chair’s armrests. “Well, I quit smoking five years ago.”

“Interesting, I started today,” she said and got to her feet. “Don’t worry, I won’t harm you.”

The Director was nervous, but his curiosity left no room for caution. He got to his feet. Alissara touched his forehead with her hand to show him her world and her people. By the end, he was sweating and panting. She helped him back to his seat.

“How many of you are here?” The Director asked.

“Three, and our Queen will land soon.”

“I will let the Minister of Defense and Military Production know.”

Alissara’s smiled. “That’s quite a mouthful.”

He smiled. “Yes, but believe it or not, he’s not too busy. We haven’t been in a war for sixty years.”

Alissara considered his statement and fought the urge to tell him that peace was over. War was coming to them.

*****

Mara

 

December 21, 2030

Jack Davies, the Director of the CIA, arrived at his office at six in the morning. Although he had four hours of sleep last night, he was awake and refreshed. Jack switched on his computer.

An encrypted email from Noah Williams waited for him. He hadn’t heard from Noah in years. Australians pulled all the stops for this assignment, and he did, too. He had devoted significant resources to locate any aliens who might have landed in the US or elsewhere and to monitor for future landings. A joint team of CIA and NSA agents were ready to leave on a short notice once the Agency detected a landing.

Noah’s email was thorough. The first section summarized detection, tracking, and retrieval method. The second section was about the alien. It included a description and highlighted her powers and technology. Noah included a video of Shara at the end. With hair dye and makeup, she’d pass for a human.

The email was interesting, and it proved he was right. They needed to pull the plug on the army operation and handle things like Noah did. But the Secretary of Defense wouldn’t let that happen.

An agent knocked and walked into the office. “I think we have something.”

Jack jumped from his seat, and in two wide steps, he was right behind the agent. “Show me!”

The agent led him to the operations room where analysts worked around the clock to gather intel, analyze data, and coordinate with the NSA and the army.

“An alien spaceship landed in Reno sometime last night. We have a rough location north of the city.”

Jack’s eyes widened. A part of him thought the landing was a onetime event. An alien landed in Australia and that was the end of it. But now, they, too, had a ship in their backyard. An alien could provide answers and technology. But an alien ship would change life on Earth. The possibilities were endless. Faster travel, advanced weapons, and better operating systems. Not to mention, interstellar travel. Humans could now leave the galaxy.

“And the aliens?” Jack asked.

“We have to be close to detect them.”

The agents in Australia chased the alien energy trail in a big city to an apartment in a residential building. Now, he’d hand the information on a silver platter to the army, and they’d get the glory. The words of the President echoed in his head, ‘they have to work together’ and ‘this is just the start’.

“Tell the army and the NSA.”

The agent nodded. “There is something else.”

“What is it?”

“The ship has a cloaking device that keeps it hidden.”

“Is it armed?”

“Yes, the energy signature is inconsistent with the size.”

Two armed alien ships that traveled through space. That traveled across Australia in one minute. That could unleash an unprecedented level of destruction. Why did the alien in Australia surrender herself to the agents then?

“Do reconnaissance from a distance. Your priority is not to alarm the aliens or trigger the ship’s defense system.”

“Yes, sir.”

“Don’t wait, send our team out. If they’re in a position to make the call, have them escort the aliens to our base in Nevada. See what she knows about the ship we have.”

He nodded.

The Secretary of Defense sent a small army to secure the
alien assets
. A good idea if he could overpower his enemy. But in this case, he underestimated his opponent, and the soldiers would pay for it.

Another agent darted to the operations room. He stopped one step short of tackling the Director and handed him a one-page report.

“Report from Cairo,” the agent said, out of breath. “A possible alien fought her way to the intelligence agency. No ship, though.”

What’s happening?

One day he was trying not to fall asleep on his desk. Just killing the year that stood between him and a comfortable retirement. Now, all hell broke loose. Aliens landed everywhere, and he had to keep track of them. This wasn’t a low-profile assignment. The future of the country and the whole the world depended on it.

Jack rubbed his temples with the tips of his fingers. “Send a team to Cairo and contact our ambassador in Egypt. We need access to that alien.”

*****

Mara accessed the CIA network. The intense effort they put into securing the network only held her back for ten seconds. She read two reports and an email from Australia. Shara made it. The CIA knew Mara was in Reno and sent a team to retrieve her if the army failed. But no mention of Alissara.

The army network was as secure as the CIA and as easy to access. But most of their communications were verbal or through radios to cover their tracks. But she found enough details to show they mobilized a few airships to Reno. Based on her limited knowledge, they used the army against enemies. Sending these units didn’t scream trust. Mara returned to the CIA website to look at the details of the team they put together before she decided.

“Hey, wake up. Where is my tablet, dude?” The voice came from the living area. It must be Nick’s roommate, Josh.

“I don’t know,” she heard Nick’s sleepy voice. “We had an alien in the house last night, and she asked if she could use it.”

Mara put her hand on her mouth to cover a booming laugh.

“Did the alien finish my Jack Daniels?”

“Maybe, I dunno,” Nick said.

“Yeah right, nice try, dude. You smell like you drank a bar last night. You finished it, didn’t you?”

“No, she did.”

Josh said nothing.

“She’s real. I met her at the pub last night.”

The back and forth conversation, if one could refer to it as such, reminded Mara of her sisters. The only thing missing was a mother to tell them off to get a little peace and quiet. Her laugh morphed into a nostalgic smile.

“Yeah? Where is she?” Josh asked.

“She left.”

Mara heard his footsteps heading toward the bedroom. Nick opened the door and gasped at the sight of her.

“Josh, come here,” he yelled.

“Dude, you’re so weird.” Josh’s vote of confidence came from the living area.

He walked to the room and saw Mara. She didn’t have her gloves on, and her eyes glowed. Josh had to know she wasn’t human.

“I told you,” Nick said in a victorious tone. He was facing Mara until the sound of his roommate’s heavy body hitting the floor caught his attention. He turned around to see Josh on the floor, unconscious. “What a girl!”

Mara’s smile turned to a full-blown laugh. “You should talk.”

“At least I didn’t faint,” Nick said and bent over to lift his roommate’s unconscious body from the floor. “So heavy.”

“Again…”

He turned to Mara, his nostrils flaring. “If you’re not going to help—”

“Fine.”

Mara put aside the tablet. She hovered to Josh’s body, aimed her hand toward him, and raised it. His body floated in the air.

“Telekinesis?” Nick asked.

“We call them power waves.” She moved past him on her way to the next room. She put Josh on his bed and returned to Nick’s room.

“Thanks,” he said.

Mara looked at him for a while, saying nothing.

“What is it?”

“I have to go. The army is here.”

His jaw dropped.

She put on her gloves and picked up her cape.

“Based on the alien movies I’ve seen, they’ll dissect and torture you to learn everything they can—”

“Let me guess,” Mara said, smiling. “I won’t die, but I’ll be treated like a lab rat. After a few years, I’ll be praying for death. I know. I read a few plots.”

“You don’t have to do this. My family lives an hour north, and you can hide with them until the army leaves.”

“Don’t worry. I can handle myself.”

Nick hugged her before she could object. “I really want to see you again.”

“You will.” She hugged him back. “You do smell like beer.”

“Take care of yourself, Mara.”

Mara tried to say something, but couldn’t. She had a hard time letting people in and a harder time letting them go, but she had to meet the army outside the city. Mara stepped back, put her cape back on, and hovered out of the door.

“You finished the Jack Daniels, didn’t you?”

She smiled. “Yes, it was better than your cheap beer.”

His loud laugh followed her downstairs and into the street.

*****

Major John O’Donnell’s airship landed north of Reno with nine army airships that carried soldiers, engineers, and a negotiation team. Huge overkill based on what had happened in Australia, but the Secretary of Defense didn’t want to leave anything to chance.

John wouldn’t complain that they gave him too many soldiers. Besides, he might need it, if the aliens refused to go with him. His plan was to find the aliens, lure them away from the city, and lay their options for them.

The location was perfect. Reno was small which would make his job easier. Less people to control, and a smaller area to sweep. The desert surrounded the city and provided the army with abundant space to maneuver. Timing was good, too. On a Saturday morning, the streets of the city were empty, and so was the university campus. He had an hour or two before it became busy.

John exited the airship and marched to a makeshift command center. Engineers set up their equipment to measure the energy disturbances in the area and isolate the energy signature of the aliens and their ship.

“Did you locate the ship?” John asked.

The lead engineer opened a sturdy case and connected a few cables to the computer inside. “We have an estimate, but we can’t pinpoint the exact location.” His computer started, and he examined the data on the screen. “There is an alien near the university and moving north, fast.”

“We’re ready, Major,” the voice came from behind him. He swung around to see Eric, the negotiation officer.

“Good,” John said. “No weapons, no communication devices, no sudden moves, and no loud voices. Whatever you do, show no sign of aggression, even if they test you, and they will.”

“You got it.”

John activated his radio to broadcast a message on the general channel. “All units, sit tight and wait for my orders.”

His phone rang. It was the Secretary of Defense himself. Jack tried to keep his composure in front of his men. “Mr. Secretary.”

“Major, do you have everything you need?”

“Yes, Mr. Secretary.”

“Have you located the aliens?”

“We have a rough location of the spaceship and one alien.”

“I don’t have to remind you. We need it alive.”

“I understand, Mr. Secretary.”

“Good luck!”

“Thank you, Mr. Secretary.”

This operation was the biggest assignment of John’s career. The Secretary of Defense himself had spoken to him twice in one day, and he was ecstatic the man chose him to lead the operation. Still, the annoying voice in the back of his head screamed that they were doing this the hard way. Two unarmed Australian agents convinced the alien to accompany them without incident. And they mobilized a small army for the same mission.

*****

Mara made her way through the army airships on the ground and into the temporary command area where the Commander of the army stood with his men. He’d instructed them to hold and wait for his orders.

She snuck up behind him. “Hello!”

The Commander jumped. She startled him. Mara hoped he recognized the alien he had come here to capture. He would if he didn’t stare at her chest.

She raised her hand and pointed to her face. “I’m Mara.”

“How did…” He didn’t finish his sentence. Instead, he gathered his composure and looked up at her face. He extended his hand. “Major John O’Donnell. Thank you for coming, Mara!”

The handshake was a friendly sign, she thought. She returned the favor and shook his hand. “How can I help you?”

Before John answered her question, a man came from behind him and invited himself to the conversation. “We were hoping you’d come with us.”

Mara examined his cold features for a moment. “Who are you?”

“We represent the US military,” the man said, “and we are here to escort you to our base.”

“No, who are you?”

“I’m a mediator between you and the army.”

Escort. Mediator. He said the words, but Mara could tell he meant the opposite. She pointed to the army behind him and smiled. “All these soldiers, are they here to help you find the right words?”

To his credit, he stayed calm, detached even. “It’s just a precaution because we don’t know who or what we’re dealing with.”

Mara smiled coldly. “Sure you do. You know about Shara, don’t you?”

“We have an army base nearby,” the Commander said, “and we would like you to come with us.”

“Where is it?”

“Arizona.”

Mara didn’t want to go to Arizona. The ship she was after was in Nevada. She shook her head.

BOOK: Legacy Of Korr
13.79Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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