When the alarm went off at 5:30 am I quickly silenced it and moaned expecting to be in a world of pain after the beating I was given. As I got up I noticed a little discomfort, but all and all I was feeling pretty damn good. I quickly got dressed in my black and camo work out clothes and comfy sneakers before I headed into the kitchen. The aroma of coffee filled the room and I started to drool. I moved to the coffee pot and grabbed a mug from beside the pot and poured myself a big glass. It was like heaven in a mug as I moved about the kitchen making myself a quick breakfast before I was out the door and to my truck. I got it and placed the mug in the cup holder before I started up the truck and made my way to the base. As I got to the gate I yawned and smiled at the guard as I handed over my ID.
"Mornin Ma'am, how are you today?" The burley guard at the gate greeted me with not umph in his voice and I smiled.
"I feel like you sound, tired, beat about about to get my ass beat again. Have a good day." He nodded as he handed back my ID and waved for the gate to be raised. I nodded back to him and made my way to a parking spot close to where Tom had parked yesterday. I grabbed my phone and things from the truck along with my piping hot coffee and made my way over to the training building where a bunch of differently dressed women were beginning their day as well. As I got in I went straight for the locker room and looked for the locker with my name on it. On the locker was a lock with a key in it and a quick note.
Keep this key with you at all times so you are able to get to your things as needed. When you get settled come join me out back for your four mile warm up and then back to the training course.
I sighed and put my purse, keys and phone in the locker before I shut it. I took another long drink of my coffee and headed out to the practice field when I bumped into someone.
"I am so sorry, I am still not much of a morning person. I didn't spill anything on you did I?" I looked at the beautiful woman apologetically and moved to let her by but she just huffed and tried to get up in my face. That was when I saw that she was pink from her head to toe almost. She looked so girly that she really didn't seem like the type that would be here.
"Ugh, are you serious, another elephant footed, clumsy bitch to get in my way. What are they thinking bringing in trash like you. I hope you know you will never make it, you may made the Beta team but never Alpha if you clomp and stomp like that. Of course I wouldn't want you on my team anyway. Get your overly dyed red hair out of my way before I stomp you where you stand."
I looked at her shocked and felt my temper start to rise. "Listen here Hawaiian Barbie, you need to get the fuck out of my way before they can't tell your bones from dust. I was polite and apologized as I wasn't watching where I am going, but hun you might want to watch your back cause you never know where I am going to be. Now get the fuck out of my way before I start stomping mud puddles in your ass then walk them dry."
I didn't even wait for a response, I walked past her and out of the locker room door to my destination at the same pace I was before the barbie doll got in my way. As I made my way outside Imi spotted me and signalled for me to move faster. I hurried over and smiled at her.
"Good morning Imi, how are you this morning? I smiled at her and sank the rest of my coffee.
She nodded at me. "Alright Ava start your four mile warm up and and then back to the course. You only have a few hours today before you meet two associates of mine, they are going to expand your education. Now warm up we only have four hours before I hand you off to Nora."
I started my run and put my MP3 player in my ears and started my run faster than I ever have. I enjoyed the serenity of the music and had my four miles done in under thirty minutes. I was winded by the time I was done and Imi had me take a break before her and I started on the course. She ran it with me the first time and then every time after that I was on my own. I started to get faster and faster as the music pumped in my ears. She knew that it was playing and didn't stop me so I kept it up even after my lungs started to burn and my breath came in gasps.
Imi nodded at me and then held up the stop watch. I smiled at her and then fell on the ground trying to catch my breath.
"Good job Ava, looks like you are really pushing yourself, that is a good thing. I can bet the music helps, but you aren't going to have it tomorrow. Why don't you take a twenty minute breather and then try the course without the music. I want you to motivate yourself without it cause if someone is trying to kill you, music is going to help them target you."
I nodded and started to pick myself up off the ground. As I dusted myself off I walked towards the locker room and smiled as I opened my locker and looked at my phone. Twenty new messages from Joy asking if I was alright and why I wasn't in to work. I texted her my abbriviated version of the story and got a call right after the message was sent.
Me* Yes mistress of the universe.
Joy* Well at least you are joking, that is a good thing.
Me* I am dog ass tired and been working my ass off since six am.
Joy* You haven't been here. Did you take them up on the offer, are you going to do it?
Me* Yea, what else am I good for honestly. I know I could have worked for you for the rest of my life, but then I wouldn't get to do what I really want to do.
Joy* You know I would never hold you back Ava, but I understand what you are saying.
Me* I know you wouldn't Joy, but they are going to teach me things that I wouldn't learn anywhere else. They have taught me things already that I have a feeling that I am going to need.
Joy* Well good luck Ava, and you keep in touch, I don't want you to get hurt, goodness knows you have had enough of that.
Me* You are too right Joy, thank you so much and I promise that I will. Have a good one.
Joy* Bust ass Ava.
I laughed as I hung up the phone and put it and my MP3 player in the locker. I headed back out to the course and didn't even wait for Imi to nod, I had a lot on my brain and I ran the course until I felt Imi's hand on my shoulder.
"Ava you are like a woman possessed. It is time for you to go and see Nora, it is time for you to also become books smart, things that you aren't taught outside of this facility."
I nodded at her and followed her into the building where all of the women were working out and into a room off the main workout room. I saw a woman dressed in purple from head to toe, well as much purple as she could wear. Imi went over to her and nodded to her before she crooked her finger for me to go to her. As I did she smiled.
"Ava this is Nora, she is going to teach you all different types of medicine and trust me, when I tell you that nothing leaves this room I mean it. Unless you are in the field you don't ever repeat what it is you learn."
I nodded. "Now you have four hours with Nora before you meet my Demo specialist. I think you and her will hit it right off. I think it will be sparks at first sight." Imi laughed at her own joke and walked away.
I sat down at the table and Nora handed me four notebooks, four textbooks and a purple pen. I smiled to myself and waited for her instructions.
"Hi Ava, first off we are going to teach you how to heal before you hurt, it is an essential part of learning to kill. I understand that it doesn't make sense to you now, but trust me, it will. Now take out your Summit book and work through the first five chapters then I am going to give you some hands on. Understand that this is a crash course that you will only be taking for two weeks and we have to get all through these books and then some."
I nodded and started to work through the chapters. The words lept from the pages to my head and I smiled to myself. I loved crash courses, they were easiest for me. For the first two hours I worked on the book work then she started to show me hands on what each herb looked like, how to tell the similar ones apart and what each of them was for. It amazed me how quickly she could speak and how she remembered over five hundred herbs all at once. By the time my first class with her was over my head was spinning. She picked up my books and notebooks and took them with her. She was serious that nothing was to leave that room.
"Be here tomorrow at the same time and we will go over it some more. You have wonderful potential and I think the bossman saw that."
I looked at her for a moment curiously. "Who is the bossman. I got a call before I started here and he told me he would introduce himself to me, but I have yet to meet him."
Nora nodded. "Yea, he is really busy so seeing him is almost next to impossible. He won't forget you though, when he comes back to base he will be happy to meet you."
I nodded. "Alright so which way to the Demo Specialist?"
Nora giggled. "Come, it might be better if I am there with you. She is overly rambunctious and very over zealous."
Nora and I chatted as we made our way over to the Demo field. I laughed as she started to tell me stories of Cherry, their Demo expert and the things she did as a kid. As we got over to her I could see her head moving back and forth and barely made out a set of headphones in all of her red and black dreadlocked hair. She wasn't even paying attention when Nora tapped her on the shoulder causing her to jump sky high.
"Good saints Nora, you scared the living tar out of me, luckily for you I didn't have a detonator in my hands. That could have been catastropic." She looked over at me and inclined her head a bit questionably.
"This is Ava, you are to train her in Explosives. They want her as good as you are and we all know you are the best."
Cherry's pale skin blushed a bit pink at the compliment. "Well, this is a first. Usually they want me to teach basics, but now they want me to crash course you on everything I know. Looks like they are trying to get you as good at Imi and quickly to. Alright then I am guessing we only have two weeks before they want you ready, since that is all the time they ever give me so I hope you retain things very well."
Nora laughed at her. "Oh you have no idea. I was trying to test her limits today, turns out she has a photographic memory and she can mimic things she has only seen once."
Cherry jumped up and down with joy and hugged Nora before she scooted her on her way. "Well then this is going to be one symphonic cluster fuck I hope you can make sense of." She laughed. "I am going to work you through how many different types of bombs their are, how to build them so you can better disarm them and then we will go through placement for maximum distruction."
She was like a kid in a candy store that didn't give me any notebooks or textbooks, she was all hands on. I made sure to remember everything that she taught me as we moved from one to another. My mind was reeling with all of this new information and they were a lot tougher than my professors at the college. I had a feeling though the things that they were teaching me were going to keep me alive in more ways than one. As she prattled on about bomb detonation types and started pointing to all the different components I decided to start making maps of them in my head. When she had me repeat them back she was surprised that I had about 98% of it correct and the things that I didn't were easily corrected until I had five different bomb types and detonators memorized piece by piece and could assemble them. By the time that our four hours were up I headed back out to my truck with a wealth of knowledge that I wasn't sure when I would need, but I knew I would at some point in the crazy life I was about to lead.
As the trip home didn't take long I stopped by the store and picked up some things to make a nice healthy dinner for Tom as he was nice enough to let me stay there with him and Conner. As I grabbed all my ingredients and went to the house I saw that Tom wasn't home yet. I unlocked the door and went in and quickly jumped into the shower before I started dinner. As the meat cooked I saw a stack of books on the table with a note attached. The note had my name on it.
These are the books that you will only study under this roof. They are advanced studies of what you are learning on base. The quicker you learn the faster we can get you out in the field. I am happy that they are moving you along so fast. Also your deposit slip for your first paycheck and your bank account information are in the manilla envelope for you, we went ahead and opened it for you and your direct deposit is automatic per the military. I will be just a bit late tonight I got called into a meeting and I have to stop the end of the world (figuratively speaking of course). I already know you are going to cook so I will come home hungry and you need to make sure you at least have the first two chapters of those books done. You can take notes, but when you leave they are locked up in a safe before you do anything else. Now make me some food bitch, LOL, just kidding, just kidding.
I laughed at the note, went over to the stove and stirred the meat around before I opened the envelope and saw the check stub with an amount that I had never seen before. I was shocked and wondered if there was a mistake in my pay. There was no way that I was supposed to make $5,000 salary every two weeks. I about dropped to the floor, I had worked for three months to even get to two thousand dollars and here I was just handed five. I smiled as I put the information away and finished my hearty meal.
It took about an hour and a half to cook dinner and by the time I was done Tom was walking in the door. I smiled to myself and laid out the plates as I cracked open the first book and carefully read through the first two chapters, writing down notes where I needed. By the time I finished with dinner, dishes and studying I could tell these next two weeks were going to kill me.