Monday, February 20, 2012
Episode 5: Land of the Knight
The land around the Knight estate was well-guarded and monitored around the clock. Daniel Fouts and Faith Fairchild kept their distance from the mansion. Liz probably had full run of the house by now.''
"She's a devious little sucker," Faith said. "When I first met her I thought she was my friend but she was just using me. She is completely loyal to this Echelon corporation. It's freaky."
"Maybe she's just programmed that way," Daniel suggested. "Echelon does have the ADP. Maybe they're using it on Liz too."
"So, underneath she could be Sally Straigh-Laced from Surry? And not this cold- blooded, manipulative killer?"
"I wouldn't put anything past them," Daniel said.
Faith began to wonder if such a technology could be used against her brother, Ethan. Ethan's twin, Ian had been on the missing list forever. The sudden reappearance of Ian had Faith worried, especially with all this Chandelor Knight nonsense.
"Remember how you said Ian thought he was Ethan?" Faith asked. "Did you actually physically see Ian or did someone send you intel about it?"
"We have it from a reliable source. Daniel started to speak but Faith interrupted him.
"Maybe this reliable source is working for Echelon too. Maybe this Ian is just some flunky with Ian's personality downloaded into his brain. Maybe Ethan's walking straight into a trap."
Faith had grown up in the spy game and coming up with elaborate plots was child's play to her. If half of what she theorized was possible, someone probably had Ian captive and were going after Ethan next.
"Do you think they're going after my family?" Faith asked.
"I think they're going after the Legacy and anyone who had any tie to that Bulgarian mission ten years ago. That's when we discovered the nanites. Maybe they're trying to advance the ADP even more."
The more speculating they did, the more awful the scenario became Faith didn't like where any of this was heading.
The image of Liz Hunter passed the window where the blueprints indicated lay Chandelor's study. The Library window next to it was dark.
"She's making herself right at home, Daniel said, spying her through field binoculars.
"What's the plan?" Faith asked. "Confront Liz or talk Chandelor?"
"Chandelor first. I want to see where his head is."
"I think I can help you with that," said a voice from behind. Fouts and Faith turned around and found Fergus standing behind them.
The duo was momentarily startled but quickly learned that this could be an opportunity.
"Great," said Daniel. "I wasn't looking forward to brushing up on my breaking and entering skills."
"The thing about working a job for seventeen years... the staff is still loyal to me. I consider them my extended family. Plus, my daughter is in there and I have to get her out. She's in more danger than she realizes," Fergus said.
"Lead the way." Daniel and Faith followed Fergus. His white hair seemed to shine like a beacon in the dark. They weaved through the trees to an odd structure jutting out of the ground south of the estate.
"What is this?" Faith asked. The structure was three times as big as a red London telephone booth but made completely of rock.
"It's one of the emergency exits Mr. Knight had built into the mansion. Rarely used. I doubt Ms. Hunter has discovered it yet. The mansion is quite large."
"One thing to our advantage," Fouts said.
Once inside the room opened up even more. The walls were all rock but the wall into the estate was pure steel. Fergus extracted a key from a large key ring in his pocket.
"Those Chandelor's too?" Fouts asked.
"He didn't ask for them back and I didn't have time to return them once I was ushered from the estate." Fergus hinted a smile at his lips. He didn't seem the type to defy order very often but they didn't have a book where this was a normal occurrence.
"The system takes a key and a code," Fergus explained. "They shouldn't have changed the code yet."
He typed the digits into the keypad and received a glaring red light for his trouble.
"I wouldn't take that bet if were you." She pushed both men out of the way and approached the keypad. "Stand aside. Let a woman work her magic."
"What are you doing?" Fouts asked.
"Being awesome, so now hush. Awesomeness requires silence. She dislodged the face plate and began picking through wires. Red, green and blue wires were haphazardly attached in certain places inside the box. Faith rerouted three of the ends to different connections. "Wah-la. Magic."
Fergus turned his key again and the light turned green.
"Thats what's I'm talking about." Faith squealed and gave herself a fist pump for good measure. "Autographs will be available after the show," she said as the three of them entered the mansion at its lowest level.
"What do they keep down here? Bodies?" Faith walked into a large room made of concrete with a big winding staircase that led upward. Everything was a dull gray color, the walls, the floor, probably even the ceiling, if she could see it. It was a decorator's nightmare. She wiped dust off the handrail.
"I guess the cleaning lady doesn't get down here much, huh?" Faith crinkled her nose in mock disgust. Her sarcasm became more prevalent the closer to danger they became. Daniel hadn't seen her so animated since he pulled her out of Paris two years ago.
"No. No one is allowed in these security areas," Fergus said. "Mr. Knight kept the escape routes bare bones. No need t spend money on flooring and wallpaper no one would ever see. One of the exits leads from his study to the basement. The other leads to the library."
"Let's hope our adventure ends at the Library."