Knome: The Forbidden Zone

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 5 (v.2) - Chapter Four

Submitted: February 19, 2017

Reads: 114

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Submitted: February 19, 2017

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Tannis (Kessel)

Somewhere

 

Jason Naziin looked around the empty, poorly lit hallway and wondered if he was in the right place. After waiting for some time without seeing anyone, nor hearing a sound, he thought about leaving.  At that moment, a door across the hallway from him opened.  He stood straight and peered towards the opened door.  A man whom Jasen did not recognize exited into the hallway and with a wave of his hand gestured for him to come forward.  Jasen walked towards the man and quietly greeted him with a handshake. The man, Kenton Sedi, directed Jasen into the room. Inside the room were a table and several chairs, with little room to spare. Sitting at the head of the table was the AIA director, Jak Timson, he greeted Jasen and directed him to take the seat opposite of his. Jasen, sat after closing the door and securing it.

“Thank you, Jasen for meeting us like this.” Jak said. “I know this is unusual.”

Jak handed Jasen a small folder, "You'll understand once we reveal some of the details of this mission.”

Jasen took the folder and placed it upon the table unopened.  'No need to apologize' he replied.  "I' know the drill."

Kenton and Jak traded glances with each other.  "I'm afraid this mission, is not like anything you've been on in the past, Kenton told him.

"So, tell me about it," Jasen replied as he opened the folder, glancing at the images inside.

"What you are looking at is an image of a ship, one of our covert agents was able to capture on the surface of Knome. The Agent was there, because we were tasked with obtaining information regarding some restricted areas that began appearing in various locations on the planet.

That ship, Kenton gestured toward the image, was discovered in the northern Pasha Region. Kenton took a map from his folder and placed it on the table, pointing out the area he had just referenced.  Somewhere in this area the body of that agent may decomposing.  We believed he was killed shortly after transmitting his discovery.

That transmission was relayed by one of our COMSATs that we had, located just outside Knomen air space.  Our Comsat, the Ankara, was destroyed. 

“Destroyed?” Jasen asked surprised.

“Yes, it was destroyed, by whom, we don’t’ know. Kenton added.

So, the Knomens, have these restricted areas, that they are willing to keep hidden with deadly force. Now the ship in that image we know for certain is beyond the capabilities of the Knomen Government to construct. 

Jasen sat back in his chair, "So, a dead agent, a Comsat destroyed by an unknow entity, a what are your suspicions?

Jak leaned forward in his seat, "We suspect that the Myans are somehow involved in this.  We can't say for certain but, that’s where you come in.  We need more data, concrete proof.  With the ongoing Knomen Ingression talks, we have been severely restricted on what we can do as an agency, to be honest with you Jasen, we have been banned from any operation involving the Knomen Republic.

Chuckling lightly Jasen asked, "So what do you want me to do what?"

We want you to violate the Royal Security council’s directive, violate Knomen air space, land somewhere near the Pasha Region, infiltrate the restricted zone and get us proof.

“Proof of what?” Jasen asked

“Are the Knomen Republic and the Myan Empire violating our trade restrictions regarding military equipment? What are they doing in these restricted zones?  Can we recover the body of our agent?  We just need more information than we currently have.”

“So, what if we discover that a violation is occurring, what then?” Jasen asked.

“We will cross that proverbial bridge when we come to it.” Jak replied.

“Right now,” Kenton added, “we don’t even see the bridge.”

“So, we want you and your team to gather as much information as possible and to relay it to us as soon as possible.” Jak explained.

“OK,” Jasen said as he sat back deep in thought.  “What if this mission somehow gets exposed."

Kenton, started to speak, but was interrupted by Jak.  "We will disavow everything, I'm sorry, Jasen, but that's the way it has to be."

"Of course," Kenton added with a glance towards Jak, "we'll do everything we can, covertly, to support you and your team." 

Jasen leaned forward in his chair, “So your suspicions are that the Myan Government has been delivering arms and military equipment to the Knomens. Now the Knomens are currently in the middle of negotiations to become a part of the Akadian Union?

“Look Jasen,” Kenton shifted his seat closer to him, “it is the task of this agency to cast light where there is darkness, to uncover suspicions, any suspicions that presents potential risks to security of our Nation.  We don’t know what’s going on, but we certainly don’t want to be caught off guard if something nefarious is going on.  We've had plenty of discussions on this, and the deciding factor has always been, the Myans.  Can we trust the Myans?

Jasen paused for quite some time, weighing the potential outcomes, playing out scenarios in his mind. "OK, I'm in.

Timson pointed to the image on the table, "Great, now I want you to understand the risk Jasen, I mean, we have one dead agent, a crew of twelve, dead.  I just want you to understand, that, to someone or some group, this is a matter of life or death.

“I do understand,” Jasen replied, “and based on that understanding, I’d like to make my participation conditional.”

“What's your condition?” Kenton asked.

“I'd like to choose at least one member of my team.”

Kenton looked at Timson who nodded with approval.  "Who would you like," Kenton asked.

“Teric Highlord.” Jasen replied.

Teric Highlord? Kenton asked perplexed.  "No way, He was convicted of treason."

“That’s not true,” Jasen shot back, “he was tried for treason, but he was completely exonerated.

“That’s unacceptable, Jasen, I’m sorry.” Kenton replied.  Jak raised his hand to halt Kenton's argument.

“He was acquitted of the charges brought against, that's true,” Jak offered, “and that would not be the reason for my objection to him accompanying you on this mission.  Teric is a well-known public figure, his inclusion could risk exposure of the mission, or at least a greater risk of exposure.”

"I'm still uncomfortable about this, I have suspicions regarding his loyalty.” Kenton objected.

"Now that is remarkable, Teric has been nothing but loyal.  Something happened when he was a child, he was influenced by hateful people.  But since then he has been strictly loyal to the crown, he saved my life, and the lives of countless others.  It was a shame what we did to him.  But I am telling you, with the risk that you just outlined for this mission, there is no one else that I want by side other than Teric Highlord and that’s my condition, period.

Can I have a minute, Kenton asked Jak, and then he turned to Jasen.  Would you mind stepping into the hallway so we can talk for a minute?

“No.” Jak spoke up rejecting Kenton suggestion.  “I accept your condition, you may employ Teric.”

Kenton leaned back into his chair defeated.

“Thanks, Jak. When do you want to go on this?

“Right now, we have two other assets that we are recruiting, we have acquired a shuttle and secured passage on the Corbellis, it is scheduled to depart in about six standard hours.

“So you have four hours to find Teric.” Kenton added, “If you can find him.”

“Now that is true,” Jak replied, “Do you have some Idea where to find him?”

“I have a suspicion.” Jasen replied.

Jak handed Jasen a note. “You will find everything you need here, You can expect to find your two fellow crewman at that location.  We will have no further contact after this.

Jasen deposited the note in his pocket and rose, shaking hands with Jak and Kenton. He then turned and left the room.

 

Tannis (Kessel) 

Anya's Residence

 

A knock on her door, jolted Anya from her slumber.  She got out of her bed.  “Anya, are you alright, came the voice of May YaMay through her door.  Anya quickly went to open the door, holding on to May as soon as she saw her.  She rested her head on May’s shoulder. 

“Oh May,” she cried.  They stood there for a moment as May comforted her.  With Anya still holding her, May stepped into the room.  May could have been Anya’s mother, in fact she was like a mother to her.  She was kind and gentle and had an appealing motherly face and a soft soothing voice.

Releasing May, Anya asked, “May, what’s going on?

“Anya, I know as much as you, maybe even less than you, May replied. 

“May, I can’t leave, I just can’t, Anya bemoaned, mostly to herself.  May took Anya’s hands and began to stroke them.

“I don’t think we have a choice, and it is not only happening to you, many others are receiving orders to leave. The Embassy has been inundated making travel arrangements.  The embassy itself will be shut down within four weeks and all staff members will be gone.

“What? Anya asked, “the embassy?”

“Yes, we have been told to keep quiet about all this activity.  If anyone inquires, we are to inform them of the special Independence celebrations that will be soon taking place on Knome, and that, is the extent of what I know,” May offered. 

“This is insane, Anya confessed.  “You have no clue as to why is this happening?”

May rose and began to pace, “I don’t know, but I am sure we will find out soon.”

“I can’t wait to find out, I need to know what’s going on. I don’t want to leave here, just yet.  May, I did as father asked, I ended my relationship with Wilhelm, but I realize deep down, I still had hope. I knew I would be here and I thought maybe something would change. I never gave up hope. I love him and I can no longer see my future without him, I regret what I’ve done, Anya confessed as her already swollen eyes began to fill with tears.

“I know it’s not my place, my lady, but I feared for you. Your father was right, I don’t believe the Akadians would ever accept you and if that’s the case, where would your relationship with him lead?  And think about him Anya, the Antilla rule is precarious at best, think of what would happen to its standing if it’s heir declared his love for you, a Knomen. It could possibly topple the Antilla dynasty. Do you want to be responsible for that?

“May, what do I do about these feelings,” Anya pleaded. “I love him so much it hurts.”

“There’s not much you can do about that,” May replied, taking Anya into her arms. “love, is as consuming as fire, and not easily extinguished, if ever. the embers will always burn in your heart. You will never get over Wilhelm, that’s just the truth. But, if it’s possible, you must suppress your emotions, and see how things are.  You did the right thing, Anya.”

Anya, listened intently to May’s words. She needed May’s calm and reasonable manner. And she was right, Anya knew that she was right. 

“why does it have to hurt so bad,” Anya asked, not expecting an answer.

“Because it’s so strong. Anya, he became a part of you, May replied.

“he did, May, he really did," Anya began to sob as May held her, stroking her hair.

 

Tannis (Kessel)

Toremark Estates

 

At the Toremark Estates, Wilhelm waited outside the apartment of his friend, flanked by two of his personal guards.  A small crowd gathered, watching and taking pictures of the young prince.  Wilhelm glanced at his time piece to make sure he was present at the agreed upon time.  Blaze Marcoon fought through the small crowd to get to his own apartment.  Wilhelm saw Blaze and approached him greeting him with a hug. Wilhelm and Blaze had attended primary and secondary classes at Bornic Academy together.  Blazé’s father was a senior senator and good friend of Wilhelm’s father, however the boys had not seen each other since Wilhelm began attending Hamlin Royal Academy. Blaze applied to attend Hamlin also but was rejected.  There was a falling out between their fathers when King Wilhelm refused to intercede in behalf of Blaze with Hamlin Academy’s acceptance board.

Blaze was happy to receive a call from Wilhelm and was happy to help him out of his predicament, whatever it was.  Blaze, with a bag under one arm, unlocked his door, letting Wilhelm enter first, after which, he entered, leaving the guards outside.

Blaze deposited the bag on a nearby table.

"So, what’s going on Wilhelm, how can I help, Blaze asked.

"Were you able to obtain everything I requested, Wilhelm asked.

"Sure, Blaze replied, "It wasn't difficult, some of it I already had. What’s it for?”

Wilhelm picked up the bag and dumped the contents on the table.

"I need a disguise and a way to escape my jailers, Wilhelm said as he looked over the clothes, trying to choose what to wear.

"Jailers? Blaze asked.

"My guards," Wilhelm clarified.

"Ok, I will change into these, and you change in to my clothes," Wilhelm explained.

"I won't get arrested for this? Blaze asked.

"No, of course not," Wilhelm replied.

Wilhelm began to change into some of the clothes he picked out.

"Can you tell me why you’re doing this? Blaze asked.

"A woman, Wilhelm confessed.

"I figured that, but, you could see anyone you wanted, why the need to disguise yourself, Blaze pressed, "You don't have to tell me if you don't want to.

Wilhelm paused as he considered how to answer or if he even should.

"Well, do you know who the Lady Anya Yemen is? Wilhelm asked.

"Of course, she's beautiful.  Wait. you have something going on with her, Blaze asked impressed.

"No, Blaze, there is nothing going on, if I get your meaning. But, I am in love with her.”

Blaze laughed until he noticed that Wilhelm was not laughing.  "You're serious!

"I am,” Wilhelm confessed.  Blaze, “I love this woman, and I failed her, but, I am trying to make it right.”

“I hope you know what you’re doing, Wilhelm, but I fear you don’t.”

Wilhelm continued removing his clothes, throwing them towards Blaze.

"I will make it right, he added.

“Hey, Wil, it’s not my place, but what does your father think of this? Blazed asked as he began to put on Wilhelm’s clothes.

Wilhelm stopped. “You know what he thinks.”

“Yeah,” Blaze considered. “hey I’m all for love, but.

“But what?” Wilhelm asked.

“It’s quite a risk, I mean with the way things are right now, Wilhelm.”

“I know, but there’s nothing we can do to win the Senate’s approval.

“But it not just the Senate, isn’t it, it’s the Governors also.” Blaze added putting on the final piece of clothing.

Wilhelm paused putting a hand to his head as if he was in pain.

“I’m sorry Wilhelm, I’ll keep quiet about it.”

“No, I appreciate what you’re saying, I do.”  Wilhelm froze considering if he should give up on his crazy plot.

“I just have to see her again, at least, after that I don’t know.

After they had completed their transformation, they critiqued one another.

Blaze placed his hand on Wilhelm's shoulder. "Wilhelm, I do wish you well”

I've passed the point of no return on this, my father knows how I feel and he's upset. I can't predict the future, and I must admit that, I'm apprehensive about all of this, but, I love her, what else can I do, anyway thanks for doing this.

"Alright, anytime.” Blaze replied.  “So, what's next.”

The door of the apartment opened. From inside, the voices of Wilhelm and Blaze could be heard.  "Let’s get together again, it was good seeing you Blaze, Wilhelm said.  "You too. Blaze replied.  Both men hugged and said goodbye.'

Wilhelm, or what appeared to be Wilhelm, walked directly out of the apartment, with no words to his guards, he made his way down the hall as his guards followed.

A few minutes later, the door to Blaze's apartment opened again, as another individual, walked out, and headed down the hall.


© Copyright 2019 James Washington. All rights reserved.

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