Methane and Carbon dioxide was written upon a flammable warning on front of one of the Gas pipes. If I had not been puking my guts out I would never have had the chance to read that description. I could see my breakfast on the floor, some bacon, the remaining’s of an egg and pieces of corn. The pipes ran down both sides of the tunnel as far as the eye could see. Deep under London, deeper than the underground laid a group of secret Military citadels and science labs all interconnected by a series of tunnels. There should have been a constant patrol of secret soldiers but England was scarce for manpower as aboveground they were in the middle of a civil war. This was a perfect opportunity as I could infiltrate one of the facilities known as the King Arthur Laboratory and retrieve an item that is much desired around the world.
As I approached the entrance to the facility my sight was suddenly shocked by a group of soldiers on the ground, breathless. There attire was enough to tell they were British secret elite troops. I knew this because I was earlier briefed on opponents that could be in the opposition of the assignment. In front of them stood two heavily supplied soldiers dressed from head to toe in black. These mercenaries I was not educated on. As a bullet left the silenced attachment of my Beretta XX-Treme and dug deep into the skull of one soldier, the other spiralled round and aimed his Vektor SP1 straight at me. We stood in a stalemate; my view was cemented on his weapon. Since the gun was really the threat my mind analysed it width to length. No silencer, the cartridge held 15 rounds and it must have weighed just under a kilogram. It was eerie how together we gazed up at the same instant; I guess DNA stood for a lot.
“No- It can’t be father?”
Francis Bone, his title was my only inheritance. How could he be there and have the technique to take down British elites. The last update on my father was of him half dead in a gutter from a heroin overdose.
“It’s a small world Freddy, you should leave now!”
“Don’t Jest Francis; achieve my mission and luckily the chance to murder your sorry ass!”
So much hatred, it was the fuel for the anger; he was the spark for the flame. But I had to stay resilient; the mission was of upmost priority.
“Why so angry son, you still blame…”
My mouth spoke without command. The duration he was in my life he would blame anybody for his faults, those sick justifications. I was just an object for his benefit; even then he could not recognise me as a man in charge of my own actions. But I could not let my anger get the best of me, I had to concentrate. On the front I played out the compressed confrontation, but inside my mind was fixated on the environment. There wasn’t much but a strong stone structure; however, above his head laid a long light.
“So Son, the hacktavist group John Doe, what are they after?”
I had no prior knowledge of my father, for all I knew he had passed over. But he had obviously researched a lot more on me, if he knew who I worked for.
“Don’t be coy, we already know the core was hidden here, and so do you!”
Calculating my next move I allowed a brief instant to investigate his attire, dark black bulletproof vest with a hood, the right content for stealth. It was transparent we both desired the same item. His vest bared an insignia that showed the image of a salmon coloured snake.
“So Sanctuary, they recruited you into their serpent militia?”
The A.I Core, an item of significance to the planet if operated correctly it had the power to revive a living Artificial intelligence. However nobody not even the British government managed to yield a working understanding of the tool.
“Don’t assume I won’t pull the trigger boy. Do you know what Sanctuary buttoned up for this?”
“I’ve been briefed, Sanctuary slaughtered to steal the core; Sir Heart’s life was robbed.”
Sir Drake Heart, the man who discovered the controversial A.I core. A well renowned treasure hunter and adventurer. From the deep of the Amazon Rain Forest to the sandy spread of Rub’ al Khali, Sir Heart had survived all of their terrains. Not long after World War 2 Heart found himself stranded in the middle of the Sahara desert, without any distinction to his whereabouts. The rest was scarce but it was believed he came across a repulsive temple decorated in foreign petroglyphs. His lust for curiosity forced him to venture inwards, where it is also believed he found the Core. Drake Escaped the Deserts ghastly grasp with the important instrument intact. This was proved as certain records showed the return to his richly decorated apartment just on the outskirts of London.
It was known that many of Hearts career associates died of suspicious circumstances. As well belief circulated that the cause of such deaths were because he tried to sell the Core to the select few. Heart shortly followed the same fate as his pale rotten corpse was discovered in the front room of his apartment. He was next to an empty bottle of Pervitin. A drug used in the war to enhance German soldiers confidence and risk taking as well as limiting pain and need for food intake. However Pervitin was actually a highly addictive strain of methamphetamine. In the ranks of John Doe it was common belief that Sanctuary trained assassins managed to pump Sir Heart full of Pervitin, more than enough to painfully murder him. The bottle was left to look like an overdose. Although a fine assumption it had many holes, it did not answer how the British managed to get a hold of the Core first and was under major scrutiny by many of John Doe’s operatives.
Eruptions fluctuated through the tunnel. An effect from the carnage above; they must have been powerful explosions to reach that deep.
“London’s on fire up there.”
Occupy London they called it. The eve of 2012 many different movements rioted through the kingdom, especially in London. A William Riding managed to gain control and merge these stereotypical groups and movements under one flag, under the bannered name of the British Rebels United (B.R.U). Because of their sudden growth they overwhelmed their oppressors, which gave them the opportunity to gruesomely decapitate the once Prime Minister Crow. William personally placed his head upon a spike outside Downing Street for the whole country to see. For a good year Parliament segregated and split, however, eventually a nemesis of Crows, Sir Maddock managed to unite a following from the ex-parliament members. They formally became known as the Rump Parliament.
3 years on the strife was slamming to its climax, the then known Prime Minister Maddock had become more destructing under his regime committing a final blood bathed swoop through London.
“The B.R.U will have their last stand tonight.”
“Changing the subject father? There won’t be a London left for the victor.”
The violent vibrations raised my anxiety; London must have been nothing more but rugged rough rubble. I had to act sharply, it was time to take my chances with the light, in an instant I was able to lift my Beretta and get an aim locked. But before I could take the shot the room ruptured, the roof caved in, everything went dark and I was forced to the ground.
The environment had transformed; the only source of sight had now come from the very same light that once may have saved my life. It swung by the wire that animated its dimming glow. As I reached my stance so did Francis, it was uncanny how many similarities we shared but so much rage kept us disjointed. Even though we had fallen we never lost our aim, I guess we truly did share more than a surname. I had to makeshift a new plan; in haste I nearly shot one of the pipes thinking the leak would blind him. If I had not read that flammable warning earlier I most probably would of shot, consuming the tunnel in a serpent blaze.
“Quell my curiosity, how does an addict join an established secret society?”
The more we talked the more time I gained. Every second breathed more chance to develop some kind of blueprint, an answer to the equation that could save my brain from greeting a bullet.
“Sanctuary rescued me, plucked me from the gutter, rehabilitated me and handed over a gun. They’re my reason to prevail.”
My mind was on override, I could not account a definite escape route. Against a normal foe I would have been so calm and consenting. The usual Fred Bone would have already worked out an assured plan and proceeded on with it. I was not my usual self; instead the fiery ten year old personification had grasped the reins of my mind. He spat out every drop of anger left inside, but it landed on death ears.
“You clean? That I cannot believe. Bet you still crave another taste!”
Fire oozed out of me, it was becoming more apparent that the only result from this standoff was in a fury of bullets. Only one of us would leave that tunnel that night.
“Walk away now and I will not shoot. This is your last warning son.”
A concept burst onto the canvas of my mind, the wrathful storm had calmed. All that pressure just evaporated. The mission it was of upmost importance and it could mould the course of time for the greater good. Sanctuary and the world elite they kept the A.I core private from the globes population. Only a select group of highly connected scientists managed to analyse and further develop the device. But none of them gained any success. Information was carefully leaked to universities and respected technicians. This was the very same cause that developed the artificial intelligence boom that had computers playing chess. Many theories surfaced, but failed to unify into a singular design, which is most probably due to the core being supressed. Even with their technological advances they still were no closer to a discovery than when Sir Drake Heart was murdered. John Doe’s official mission statement was ‘all knowledge is open knowledge’. If we had retrieved the core we would have leaked everything onto the net, its design, which theories seemed correct and anything else of importance. We would have done that to help produce a smarter and reformed future for the human race. I had to finish the mission, my past anguishes would need to be let go, but then he spoke of her.
“Your last chance Frankie, Leave or join your mother”
I prided myself on how resilient I could be. The criticism and abuse I had received in my life I just knocked off, was large. I had developed a tough barricade; he knew how to bring down my defences. My eyes could only see red fury; I had become the embodiment of Wrath. My persona was lost in the shade, my shadow now sat in the seat of control.
“Don’t you dare speak her name again; she was a better person than you’ll ever be!”
The space between us shrank, with each step the end drew near. How could such events lead to this a father and son? As a child I looked up to him, I respected this man and cried in fear for his safety, now I have the choice to take away that security. The world is surely built on Irony.
“Son you don’t know the full truth…”
“Growing up, no dad no bedtime stories, no lessons against bullies, that’s my truth.”
It would only have been a sick and twisted justification anyway. Something down the lines of she was sinful or she forced him to stay away. I respect her for keeping him absent from my life. A man so full of poison would have polluted the youth around him. Mother she worked every day to feed us, a single parent of two, every penny he scrounged went inside a needle. God rest her soul. But that’s all in the past; it does not change a thing. Our guns are aimed; only one man will survive this night.
A tool so desired as the A.I core could change the order of the world as we know it. To awaken a sentient being that had or could evolve to have more intelligence than a 7 billion human race combined, the effects could not have been projected by a single mind. The controversial questions would have been answered correctly without human error getting in the way, emotions such as anger and jealousy would have become obsolete. However this had sparked the dark side of the imagination for many involved. Science fiction stories talked of a technology evolving into an uncontrollable beast. Others discussed the loss of human rights and freedom to be governed by some sentient being, in turn becoming its pets. Whichever way the coin landed it would be apparent that matters such as civil war would cease to exist. Colliding conflicts would simply be solved by the mass intellectual judge, or mankind would unite as a race and fight their common enemy. This was why it was detrimentally important to who wielded the core. With a chance of sparking a chain of events that could shape the world for centuries after, we were not just affecting our children but that of our future ancestors as well.
All roads led to the same outcome. My head was a battle between voices, one screaming kill the vicious bastard, another speaking of the core. Just shoot now and finish the mission, then both could be answered. But a third echo sprouted a question that plagued my conscious. ‘Could you live with yourself?’ In the end he was still my father.
“I have to let go, otherwise this poison will turn me into you!”
It was me or him, but if I was to end this I needed to be sure. It was necessary to get every little bit of angst out, with no male bravado influenced by my ego to mask it.
“Despite the Rejection, Just an apology, I could have forgiven y…”
Could I really let go of it all, a whole childhood of rage? The ideal had never crossed my brain until that moment, the shady side of my mind began to retreat, and my very own blameful justifications dispersed. In an instant of clarity I truly understood. He may have twisted and justified the truth, it was the only way of survival, to blur and distort his world, and Francis he had to live with that burden. Everyone in life will make mistakes, but as long as you would own up and learn from them, you would be fine. It is the very moment a man would succumb and blame others for their faults that they would drown under the pressure.
“It isn’t hate, its pity! You know no redemption. No understanding of an apology.”
If he was to breathe his final breath he still would not muster up the word sorry. However I then knew he would not have done that by choice, he simply did not know how to.
“I have no reason to apologise, I hold my head high son!”
But despite it all those words still stung deep. I understood but standing there listening to him blame my mother for his wrong doings sickened me. He then spoke about how I never witnessed his habit, he never got high in front of me, and so it was all fine then. But being the addict’s son can be scornful as a child, however, he did not know that. I closed my left eye, got my aim locked tightly on his head and spoke
“I guess words aren’t going to settle this!”
“You’re correct with that son.”
Another shake from an explosion from above shattered the only source of light. Both Fred and his Father stood in complete darkness. Nothing was heard but a single gunshot. Seconds later a body sized thud smashed to the ground.
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