Scorpion's Reach 'Finale, part 2'
From the author
Yes, this is the final instalment of the series. And before I say anything else, I want to say a big thank you to all of you who've stayed with me in this series, I'm hoping that you've enjoyed the story as much as I have.
In the last episode, we found out that the Drug dealers were actually using a ship to bring the drugs in, and it's not just delivering to NZ but seems to be a much larger operation.
One thing you have to be able to do in Special Forces is 'think on your feet' and change with the situation.
When I was researching the story one of the things I discovered is that it's the main reason why a lot of regular 'soldiers' don't make the grade! They want people who don't even realize there's a 'box' to think outside of!
In the USA you can go directly from civilian life into the Navy SEALS but selection is, well let's just say about one in a hundred make the grade!
In Britain (and the US Army) you can't enter direct, you have to have served at least five or so years in the regular Army, and that doesn't guarantee getting in! If you want into the SAS or Delta force the selection is brutal! Then the training begins, and that's worse!
Having said that, I want to dedicate this hub to all those who 'went for it' and pushed hard.
I'm glad you've enjoyed the story, and hope that having read it, you've got more respect for those who work day and night to keep us safe.
"Don't worry about the niceties"
“You two next” Joey shouted at Hene and Sam, they were trying really hard to keep up with things, but this team worked so radically different to anything they were used to, “Head for the door” he pointed to the door about ten feet outside the disc of the blades. There were a couple of cylinders there, “We’ll be right there”
All four of them leapt from the chopper, as soon as they were clear Carol pulled hard on the collective, put the nose down and flew off like a screaming banshee, creating as much panic among the boat’s inhabitants as she could, ten seconds later she was hitting a hundred and fifty knots calling out for a bearing to the Wellington.
“Smithy, cover us, we’ll get the RHIBs in” Jacko called out, he and Mac worked their way to the stern and signalled the two boats, they heard the roar of the huge outboards as the two boats came to life, two ropes came hurling over the back of the boat, Mac grabbed one, Jacko the other and both found a secure point to tie the boats to, next came rope ladders that were also secured, then came the Navy, each one ready for whatever was coming their way.
The door was locked, that didn’t stop Joey, one flying drop kick and the door gave way, they were in the corridor, Joey in the lead, MP5 slung over his back and the Browning at the ready, “Hene,” Joey called out, “You watch our backs, anything that doesn’t identify either Army or Navy, waste it!”
“What?” Hene started to protest, “What about?”
“Don’t bloody argue, just damn well do it! We’ll worry about the niceties later, GOT IT?”
“Just do as he says” Sam chipped in, figuring it might get taken better if it was coming from a fellow police officer.
They moved quickly, not worrying too much about stealth, Joey leading, next was Sandy, then Sam and finally Hene, checking their rear.
The corridor had a left turn, Joey halted, glancing furtively around the corner he saw a set of steps with a guard at the bottom, he had an Uzi, and he looked nervous.
Joey reached down into one of the pouches on his belt, he took out his silencer, put it on the end of the barrel, pushed and turned, the familiar sound of the bayonet connection clicking into place.
“ARMY, DROP YOUR WEAPON!” Joey demanded as he pivoted round challenging the guard, either the guard didn't hear, chose not to hear or simply thought 'screw you’ and started to bring his weapon to bear. The outcome was two shots in quick succession, one to the left knee and one to the right shoulder, the weapon fell to the floor as he slumped, his cries of agony drowned out by the shouting and occasional gunfire outside.
"Booby traps, second nature!"
The door was locked, they could hear voices on the other side, the sound of panic, frantic voices shouting and cursing in at least a couple of languages, at least that's what it sounded like to Joey, he couldn't tell which ones, but there was no mistaking the tone.
They were on the top deck, at the stern, the stairs that lead them were just to the left, Sam and Hene were still on them, Sam was halfway up and Hene at the bottom, watching their backs. Joey snaked his way across to the right-hand side of the door, he indicated to Sandy they needed the lockpick, she had a small rucksack with her 'bag of tricks’ in, she took it off, set the pack down and found what she needed.
The lock wasn't anything special, just a standard mortise and tenon lock, Sandy only took a few seconds, then she gave Joey the 'thumbs up’, he hand signalled her to move away.
Work with someone for long enough and you begin to understand how they think, she knew Joey was thinking they had no idea what was behind the door. Yes, it leads into the lounge, the main control for the ship, but what was waiting on the other side?
The one thing she'd learned with the team was 'always expect the unexpected’ it was just a hazard of their occupation, or as Joey would say, “it goes with the territory.”
“What the hell's the holdup?” Sam asked, unsure of the situation.
“Booby traps” Sandy replied, “you wouldn't want to walk through a door with a claymore waiting on the other side, or a machine gun!”
“Oh” there wasn't much to say really, “sorry I asked” Sam felt sheepish something she probably should have known.
“Joey's ex-bomb disposal” Sandy went on, “to him, it's second nature,” she shifted slightly, “you and me, however, we'd never think of it, and head straight into the trap”
Just then the mike came alive. “Joey, Jacko here, sitrep now!” It was more a demand than a question.
Sandy noticed Joey had moved, he wasn't in the 'ready’ position with back against the wall, he'd lowered himself down and was lying prone on the floor, he was at an angle, it took her a moment to realize he'd moved so he presented the smallest target and maximum Kevlar protection, he was gently pushing the door open, checking for nasty surprises.
Thunder broke out, continuous rumbling as the wall and door seemed to explode at waist height, two machine guns were blasting anything along the wall.
The door was far enough ajar for his needs, he still had the Browning in his left hand, he waved it to tell them “get ready.” Sandy couldn’t really believe it, the wall was being torn apart by machine gun fire, and Joey was as calm as ever, preparing to retaliate with stun grenades!
Laying the Browning down, he reached back and found the last 'flashbang’ keying his mike, he whispered. “Just about to breach boss, stay out of the lounge, they’ve got a couple of AKs in there, stand by” he pulled the pin, released the handle and rolled the cylinder forward round the door.
As soon as he let go, he rolled back behind the door and held up his hands. “On three close the eyes and cover the ears!” He counted down using hand signals.
There was brilliant white light, they saw it even through closed eyes, followed by a deafening bang.
Joey was up and through the door, he saw two with AK 47s.
“ARMY, WEAPONS DOWN!” He shouted, the two were trying to swap magazines, they'd used a whole magazine each on the wall, they started bringing up their weapons.
Joey saw it, the Browning came up and barked twice, the first guy went down with two in the chest, that's when he heard another shot fired, then a second.
He was thrown across the room, it felt like he'd been kicked in the chest, he could hardly breathe.
Sandy burst into the room, she took out the second one, but that's when they realized he wasn't the danger, she didn’t see it at first, it was only when Joey knocked her flying as he was knocked over by the force of the two rounds hitting him they became even aware of any danger.
Fishface knew what was going to happen as soon as he saw the cylinder, he'd made a grab for the table and tried to upturn it, but it was bolted to the floor, he threw himself behind a chair just as the flashbang went off.
His 'cat-like’ reflexes saved him, he came back up, a Beretta 9mm in hand, with one fluid motion he took aim and squeezed off two shots, the first guy, Joey, went sprawling, next he followed through to the second target.
Sam saw it happen, she saw it through the holes in the wall that the bullets had made, she saw the two shots, saw him line up his next target. Training kicked in.
Sam saves Joey
There wasn't time to warn, it would be over in a nanosecond, Sam’s police training ‘kicked’ in, seemingly from nowhere, she’d done these in training, but never in real life before, still, it was like a ‘second nature’ to her, no thinking, just following through. She had the Glock, flicking the safety to auto she flung herself through the door, not sure how many rounds she still had in the clip, she let them all off in the general direction of the shooter. Glass
Seven rounds left the chamber, but three found their mark, all three to the chest, Fishface wasn't getting up from that.Glass disintegrated as the other four hit various panels, shattering and spraying everything with broken glass.
"Run" right into the barrel of a Gun?
Chen saw the door move at the beginning, he saw the two guards 'spray and pray’ the walls and he ran. As soon as he was through the door he heard shouting on his right, so he headed for the left side, he threw the briefcase he’d been stuffing money into down the ladder and grabbed hold, sliding down the ladder he was working out how to get away when a hand came up from behind and yanked him off the ladder. He was forced back, tripping and ending up on his back staring down the barrel of a Steyr AUG less than an inch from his face and an extremely pissed off Naval rating.
“Move and I’ll blow your sodding head off!” the rating was screaming, even with his limited English, Chen understood the situation perfectly, he stayed as still as a stone.
“On yer back” the rating screamed as he grabbed Chen and began to roll him over, the muzzle never more than two inches from his face, “arms out, spread yer legs” another rating took up a position behind them, covering the first one as he began a physical and none too gentle search or ‘pat down,’ finally, when he was satisfied the rating grabbed both arms and wrenched them down and behind him, taking the plasticuffs from his belt, he put them on and made sure they were uncomfortably tight, but not too tight to totally cut off circulation, it was over.
“Captain” the young Naval officer called into the radio, “we got him, rest of the teams are reporting the ship secure.” Jacko could hear the relief in his voice.
“Thank you Lieutenant, and tell your men, bloody good work” Jacko replied.
"A good person's struggle"
Hene got into the room after the gunfight, just in time to see Fishface go down, he’d made it to him just in time to see the light of life go out of his eyes, he wasn’t sure if he wanted to try and save him, part of him said he should, but another part said, “after all the pain and misery this one’s caused, the world might be a better place without him!”
That’s what he felt, but inside there was that little struggle that a fundamentally good person has when even the most awful and evil meet their demise, a sadness that it came to this, fighting with the thought of ‘good riddance’, he was glad that he didn’t have to make a choice as the light went out before he could do anything.
“Don’t bother with him” a female voice came from behind, it was Sam’s, “go check on our own people.” It was almost an order, he began to look around.
Joey was rubbing his chest, it felt like he’d been kicked by a mule, “Shit, that hurt” he mumbled as he slowly rose to a sitting position, “I forgot how much it hurts”
“You mean this isn’t the first time?” both Sam and Hene asked the question, they were cops, but they only trained for this, reality was quite different.
“Wish I could say it was” Joey replied with a rueful smile, “Hazard of my job”
“Remind me never to apply” Hene shot back, they stopped for a moment in stunned silence, then slowly Sandy began to laugh, followed by Joey, but he didn’t laugh much as it hurt to try too much. “Hell, I must've cracked a rib or something!”
“Bloody typical” Mac came through the corridor, the same way they'd come in, “give him a bit of an audience, and he'll make a bloody show, get all the sympathy, especially from the women, eh Joey?”
Joey couldn't help laughing, even though it hurt, “you taught me well Mac!” He reached out for the big Scot to give him a hand, “come on, let's go see what we've found.”
What they found, and "OH Shit"
“Boss” the radio came to life, it was one of the Navy ratings calling the Lieutenant, “We’re down in the stern compartment, you better come take a look”
“On our way” the officer replied, he turned to Jacko, “Maybe you’d better come too”
Jacko was half in the bridge and half in the lounge area, Mac was still checking Joey’s injury,’Nothing but a bruise” was the only comment he’d made, the Kevlar had saved his life, but that wasn’t new territory for them, “Joey, let’s go take a look, you too Mac” he turned to Sandy, there's the laptops there, see what you can retrieve,”
“Will do” she turned to Sam, “any good with computers?” she asked as she set the first one back on the table, it didn’t look too banged up.
“Not bad” Sam replied, but are you sure they’re going to work?”
Sandy was reaching into the backpack, she pulled out a small device, that sort of looked like a smartphone with a few leads attached, “Won’t matter really, all I need is the hard drive to be intact, and a power supply, this little device will do the rest!” she plugged it into one of the ports on the laptop, next she turned the machine on, “looks like the battery still has juice in it, she was basically bypassing the motherboard and using the machine’s own battery supply to read the files on the hard drive. Next, she took the tablet they’d been using and connected it to the device, that allowed her to open and look at any file they wanted to.
Jacko was still in the doorway, “Hene, you come with us, I’ve got a feeling the police are going to want to know all about what’s there!” They left the bridge.
The stern compartment is where the billionaire toys are normally kept, you know, the Ferrari they use to drive, the Jetskis and anything else they take along for the ride. It was a huge compartment, big enough to be a small warehouse, and that’s exactly what it had been turned into.
Five pallets of what looked like hessian sacks lined the walls, two of the pallets were eight layers high, and covered with shrink wrap, only on close inspection did you see the ‘sacks’ themselves were packed with ‘bricks’ of various kinds, some looked like bricks of white powder, some were a slightly different colour, but there was no mistaking the substances, Heroin and Cocaine and literally tons on if!
“Holy…..” Jacko blurted out as they walked into the room, “Jeez, How much?”
“At a guess sir” the rating who’d made the call replied, “about a ton and a half of the Heroin, and nearly a ton of Cocaine, but that’s not all, step this way” he showed them to another compartment, “This is the crystal meth!” there were two more pallets, “and next door is the lab, they’re making and supplying from the ship.” he let that sink in before continuing, “We’ve got the precursor material in another compartment”
“How many compartments altogether?” the Lieutenant finally recovered enough to ask a question, this was easily going to be the biggest drug bust certainly in New Zealand.
“Four sir” the rating replied, “last one’s where they kept the weapons and the safe with the money in!”
They were just coming to terms with the magnitude of the bust when Jacko and Joey’s earpieces came to life, it was Sandy, “Jacko, something you’ll need to see, bring Joey, and Hene”
They were there in double time, “What you got for us?” Jacko demanded as they came through the door.
Sandy took a small thumb drive and gave it to him, “Guard this with your life boss, our lives might just depend on it!” the last time she’d looked this serious they were about to storm the fortress at Alamut.
Jacko took the drive, unclipped his breast pocket and slid the drive in, clipping the pocket shut again he asked, “what exactly is it?”
Sandy looked him directly in the eye, she motioned for Joey to close the door, Joey did, Hene had crossed the room and closed the other door as best he could, Mac was treating wounded and Smithy was dealing with the prisoners they’d taken as the Navy boys and girls were still doing their search. As soon as the doors were closed she spoke in a voice so low it was almost a whisper, “It’s got the reason we had to get out of London boss! Not the name exactly, but the first clue that’ll lead us to”
“Cut the cloak and dagger Sandy, just come straight out and tell us” Jacko demanded.
“Okay” Sandy replied, “it’s got a phone number there, someone from that number was making a call, it’s also got the location and time, they were making it to the Satphone here by the way”
“And it was coming” she replied, “from inside M.I.6 headquarters. Third floor!”
From the Author
Did you get that, someone from MI6 was talking to the dealers!
That can only mean one thing, there's a 'bad apple' in the bunch! The 'mole' has struck again, and yes, it was intentional, it leads into the final part of the story, the third book in the series "Scorpion's Vengeance"
I'm part of the way through the first draft of the story and might start serializing it in the next few weeks, but we'll be taking a bit of a break for a few weeks.
leave a comment, and let me know what you think.