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An Enemy Within — Chapter Forty Nine

20 Jan

Chapter 49

With the front door now closed, Shannon makes her way down the front pathway to the street. Once she reaches the curb, she looks in both directions to see which way she should go. Seeing what is available, Shannon turns in the direction that she believes will lead her to a major intersection. As she makes her way down the street, holding her injured arm against her as she does, she feels nervous and uncomfortable. This it due to the fact that she’s concerned about being spotted by the New World Power as well as the fact that she is in an unfamiliar neighborhood. This actually makes her a target for local thugs and bullies because her discomfort is expressed through her body language and through her lack of confidence. Her behavior can also draw the attention of more nefarious individuals.

As Shannon makes her way down the street, she eventually comes across some commercial buildings at what appears to be a busy intersection. As she approaches the intersection, she notices that one of the buildings has a payphone on it. At this, she wonders how many payphones are still in existence around L.A. nowadays due to the high volume of cell phones in use. But regardless of how many cell phones come into use, there will, or at least there should, be a need for public payphones because of situations like this; an emergency situation where a person doesn’t have a cell phone handy and other types of phones aren’t available.

But regardless of how many payphones are left in existence, there’s one here now and that’s all that Shannon cares about. She goes up to it and calls the police. It’s a good thing that the emergency contact number is free. Otherwise, Shannon would be screwed because she doesn’t have any change on her. She doesn’t even have any form of ID. Everything was left at the hospital in her mad dash to leave. If she knew that the situation was going to develop as it has, she would have tried to prepare for it. Too bad clairvoyance doesn’t actually exist. What a shame.

Making it through to 911 dispatch, Shannon hears the operator say, “911 emergency. How can I be of assistance?”

“Hi. My name is Shannon Brown and I’ve been kidnapped,” she says in a bit of a panic.

“Okay. Where are you now?”

Shannon looks around and tells the operator the intersecting streets.

“Okay Ms. Brown. I’ve notified the police and they’ll be sending someone to your location immediately. What’s your current situation?”

“I’m at a payphone. I managed to escape just a few minutes ago. But there are people who are still after me.”

“I know you’re scared, but just stay where you are and the police will be there shortly.”

But unfortunately for Shannon, so will the New World Power. They have members who listen to the emergency band frequencies through devices like police scanners for situations just like this one. When they hear Shannon’s name and her current location, the person listening to the scanner contacts those in the field and send them to that location. Not long after initially making the call, a squad car comes pulling up to Shannon’s location with sirens blaring. It must have been in the area in order for it to arrive so quickly. With the squad car here, Shannon lets the operator know that a squad car has arrived and then hangs up.

“Are you Shannon Brown?” one of the officers asks as he gets out of the car.

“Yes,” Shannon replies with some pep in her voice.

“Ok. I’m Officer John Henry and this is Officer Calloway. Can you tell me what happened?”

As Shannon is talking to the officers, a van comes rolling up to the location. As it passes by, it slows down to see if the woman the police are talking to is Shannon. Confident that it is, it comes to a stop and the side door opens up with armed individuals coming out. Seeing this unfold, Shannon realizes what’s going to happen, so she turns on her heals and begins to run. Before the officers have a chance to process what is going on, the members from the New World Power open fire, taking down both officers. One officer will die on the scene while the other has a chance of survival if medical assistance arrives on time.

As she runs, Shannon makes her way down an alleyway with one of the New World Power members chasing her. At the mouth of the alley, the New World Power member raises his weapon and takes a shot. But in his haste, he doesn’t properly aim, causing him to strike a homeless person instead of his intended target. When Shannon hears the gunfire, she instinctively ducks behind some material located in the alley. After ducking, Shannon looks around and happens to see a rear entrance to one of the buildings close to her and she makes a quick dash for it. As she makes her move, the New World Power member takes another shot, but misses.

Once through the door, Shannon rushes through the building and exits out of its front door. Once on the street, she makes a hard turn and begins to run along the sidewalk. As she runs, Shannon does so away from where she met the police and where the New World Power began shooting at her. If the sidewalk was really crowded, it would be a good idea for her to stop running and blend in with the crowd. However, this isn’t the case, so stopping would be a really bad idea. And at the moment, Shannon is too pumped and caught up in the situation for her to do anything other than just run.

Following just behind Shannon are two of the New World Power members, each one of them armed. The third member of this trio stayed with the van so that he could follow her in the vehicle. And in his attempt to plan ahead, he actually got ahead of Shannon in an attempt to cut her off. This is due in part to relatively light traffic on the street and his thought that Shannon would continue to run down the alley, not through the buildings.

After running down the sidewalk for several yards, ignoring the pain that exists in her arm and shoulder, Shannon decides to cut across the street. It’s not until she begins to cross the street that the New World Power members who are on foot come out of the building, and it takes them a moment to spot her. And with the member in the van, he doesn’t spot her until she begins to head behind the van. When he spots her, it is in his side view mirror. He doesn’t recognize her at first, but when she comes across on the other side of the van, something clicks in the driver’s head, causing him to stop the van. Recognizing her, the driver curses himself for not being more attentive.

It’s when the van comes to an abrupt stop that Shannon makes the connection that this is the van that the New World Power is using to come after her. It’s also at this point that the other New World Power members begin to cross the street. But as they do, Shannon heads into the buildings on the other side in an attempt to make it to another alleyway. The driver of the van follows Shannon’s progress and notifies his fellow New World Power members on where to go. With this information, the two of them make their way after her, eventually making it into another alleyway. Upon reaching it, they find it deserted with no sign of their target.

The two New World Power members look at each other and give some quick hand-jesters, indicating that they should head in opposite directions so that they can better search for their target. Hiding behind a dumpster, Shannon is trying to make herself as small as possible. She also wishes that there is something handy like a pipe or loose table leg for her to use as a protective instrument. But no such luck. She is entirely self-reliant. And even if there was something available for her to use, she’s not too sure how effective she would be because of her injured arm.

She would also like to know where her pursuers are. She wishes that she would be able to use one of her psionic abilities to detect them, but she isn’t powerful enough to do so. They are too far away. Not even Crow would be able to detect them psionically. It’s just how psionic abilities work. Entertainment venues such as movies, television, and comics have glorified psionics, making them out to be more powerful than they really are. Reality is a different story, even though Shannon wishes otherwise right about now.

Because of this, Shannon has to peer out from behind the dumpster in order to see where they are. As she sneaks a peak from her location, she manages to see one of her pursuers. Seeing him, Shannon quickly ducks back to her hidey-hole. From what she can tell, only one of them is coming her way. This means that she has to only worry about one person at the moment. This makes it easier for Shannon because she only needs to fend off one person when she makes her move. She can worry about the other person later.

As the New World Power member makes his way down the alley, he approaches the dumpster wearily. He has to be on his guard in situations like this because people might get the drop on him if he wasn’t. But despite one’s best efforts, people can still get the drop on you. As the New World Power member approaches Shannon’s location, she uses telepathic transmission on him to essentially yell within his head. This disorients him enough for Shannon to punch the man in the face. The double surprise of being mentally yelled at and being punched in the face causes him to loosen his grip on his gun, allowing Shannon to take it from him. The man, however, manages to regain enough of himself to go after Shannon after she takes his gun. But before he is able to do anything, he gets shot by Shannon. But since Shannon is inexperienced with handling guns, even after receiving her New World Power training, she drops it after shooting him.

Hearing the commotion, the second New World Power member turns around in time to see his compatriot go down. In addition to this, he sees the gun drop from Shannon’s hands. Seeing this, the second New World Power member raises his weapon and takes aim. Before Shannon is able to re-obtain the gun, the second New World Power member is able to get a shot off. Fortunately for Shannon, she sees the second member raise his weapon and is able to duck back behind the dumpster before he is able to fire. After hearing the weapon discharge, and not hearing another shot being fired, Shannon quickly moves forward in order to reacquire the dropped gun.

After firing, the second New World Power member rushes forward. But as he makes it around the dumpster, Shannon is waiting for him, shooting him in the shoulder and causing him to drop. With him down, Shannon quickly moves to take the gun away from him. As she does this, the van turns the corner and makes its way into the alley. Seeing this, Shannon runs back into one of the buildings.

In addition to these three individuals going after Shannon, there are other New World Power members roaming the streets looking for her. One of them is Crow. Since he wasn’t able to finish the job at the hospital, maybe now will be the opportunity for him to finish it. Crow can be compared to a field commander; a high ranking officer who commands, not from a distance, but from the frontlines. He’s not afraid to get out into the fray of things with his subordinates. And since the New World Power is a relatively young and developing organization, it needs its members to be as effective as possible, and that means taking on multiple roles. However, there are situations where exceptions are made because of the job or task that has been assigned.

When word comes out on Shannon’s location, Crow isn’t too far away. Once hearing of her location, Crow makes his way there as quickly as possible. He’s also in communication with the driver of the van, so he’s been informed of what is going on. When Crow arrives at the location, it’s at the same time that Shannon has left the alley and has entered one of the buildings. What Crow needs to do now is to just wait for Shannon to come bursting from one of the buildings and into the street.

When Shannon went into the building, it was possibly the best thing she could have done. It takes her out of the alley and eliminates the van as a possible threat. If she stayed in the alleyway, there wasn’t too much for her to do and allowed the van to easily overtake her. With being in the building, it gives Shannon some options. She can run through the building and exit out on the other side, or she could do something inside the building, such as hide. Since there is an internal stairwell, that is another option available to her. All she needs to do is figure out what to do.

 

(c) 2011 Bradley P. Thomas

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Posted by on January 20, 2012 in An Enemy Within

 

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