Scorpion's Reach 'The Plan'
Just saying hello
From the Author
Last time we had an unexpected event happen. Just after meeting with Joey and Sandy, someone ambushed Sam and Hene on their way back to the station.
All we know so far, is that whoever it was is travelling by Helicopter, and is probably headed for an Island off the coast, but we've no idea where, and the earliest the team can get transport is three hours time!
Joey and Sandy have something to do first, lets see what they get up to.
From the previous "Good hunting gentlemen"
“I’m not going to ask how you might know that” Mildred came back, “Look, the earliest I can get any transport like that to you folks is three hours, when my team takes the people you already have off your hands, sorry about that!” she stopped there, then added, “I’m presuming you folks want to be the ones to finish the job?” She knew the answer, but had to ask,even if was only for the ‘paperwork’.
“Wouldn’t dream of it any other way” Jacko replied, he carried on “we’ve got a few things here to do, Joey and Sandy have a friend they need to ‘invite to the party’ if you know what we mean! Now you can try and stop us, or you can turn us loose on these pricks, but either way, we’re going after them!”
“Figured you’d say that!” Mildred smiled, “Sir Mike warned me about this team!”
“Just make sure you send our Kit!” Mac spoke for the first time.
“All in hand Mac, all in hand, you’ll have what you need in three hours,” she reached for the off button, but before she pressed it she stopped for one last time, “Good hunting gentlemen!”
Meet 'Bonnie and Clyde'
'Bonnie and Clyde'
"It's going to be at least three hours before we're anywhere near ready to help 'em!" It was a statement more than anything else, one borne of sheer frustration, "but there's other stuff we can be doing" Jacko continued on, he turned and faced Joey, "I'd say you and Sandy need to go deal with that prick of a bent cop', I'll leave it to you how you interpret that!" He looked at the other two, they were eager just to start some preparation, any kind would do, and knowing that was being 'dealt with' was a start at least.
"The rest of us" Jacko went on, "Mildred's sending our 'kit' down, but we'll prep everything else, including likely places they're taking them."
"Killing house boss?" It was Mac asked the question.
"Expect so" Jacko replied. "We'll prepare for it, layout and everything!"
The 'Killing house' is a little corner at the SAS barracks in Hereford, they probably have one in every SAS barracks, but the Hereford one is the famous one, it's purpose is 'Hostage rescue' but not taking prisoners! All hostages rescued 'alive' but dead hostage takers, live hostage takers are extra paperwork, and the SAS hate paperwork.
Joey and Sandy both donned leathers, Kevin had a couple of sets for the work bikes they had on the farm, a couple of trials bikes, they'd already decided to take two of the road bikes, kind of "temporary loan on a permanent basis" as Joey called it.
"Which one you want?" He asked Sandy, "the Bonneville or the Commando?"
"What about the Harleys?" Sandy asked, she'd dreamt of riding a Harley Davidson, now they had the chance, she really wanted to take it!
"They're good cruisers" Joey replied, "but the Triumph and Norton are built for racing!"
"Okay" Sandy headed for the bikes, she straddled the Bonneville, reached down and turned the key, "I'll take Bonnie, you get Clyde" she looked over as she fastened the helmet, rocking the bike off the stand she pointed the bike towards the gate. "Ready?"
Joey couldn't help smiling, he was a bit disappointed, as he'd wanted the Bonneville, but a Norton Commando TT racer was a pretty good consolation, he straddled the bike smiling that only Sandy could come up with the names of two outlaws for the bikes, 'Bonnie' for the Bonneville, 'Clyde' for the Commando, it kind of fit them.
Last thing they did was plug in the phone chargers to the cigarette lighters and clip the phones into the brackets the bikes had fitted; next they put their earpieces on and turned on the Bluetooth.
"Scorpion four and five ready to roll" Joey spoke into the phone, it was like a complete transformation, out went the young kids, in came the professional team.
Both bikes roared to life, a final check of the lights and they were ready to roll, Joey flicked up the bike stand and turned the commando towards the road, taking a final look back at the team he flicked the visor down, “Let’s roll” the bike roared to life as they set off, dirt and gravel spraying back as they tore down the road.
The real training, Live ammunition all the time.
Meanwhile 'Back at the ranch'
The elevator door made a slight swishing sound as it opened, she stepped out into the cavernous place, artificial light kept everything 'as bright as daylight' but the reality was there was no natural light coming in.
She was on the fourth floor of a building that according to the plans only had three floors, mind you the people who 'owned' it didn't really own the building, they just rented it, and were too proud to say anything!
"Good to see you again Ma'am" a casually dressed man in his mid thirties approached holding out his hand for a handshake.
'Mildred' wasn't her real name, but it was the name everyone in the room, in fact almost everyone in the organization knew her by. It was the name on the door of her office, but it wasn't the name she was born with, or the name she was known by those few people she called friends. 'Mildred' was her "Call-sign", the name she'd chosen when she came into the world of 'shadows'.
"Good to see you too Mark, keeping you busy I see." She shook his hand, "Where are we up to?"
There were five people in the room; apart from 'Mark' they were all studying their computer screens. "Scorpions four and five just called in as rolling" Mark replied, "the rest are gearing up ready for the chopper!"
"Speaking of which" 'Mildred' asked, "Where are we with the helicopter?"
"First one's airborne now" Mark looked at his watch, "they'll be at the farm in just over an hour, second one will be on standby at Papakura, just in case it all turns to"
"Yes, I know" she sounded tense, "Hope for the best, prepare for the worst" is almost a 'mantra' the spy agencies live by. "Where are we with the rest of things?"
"Chambers in London's sent a list of accounts both here in New Zealand and Australia for us, we've notified the Aussies, they'll drain the accounts there when we give the go" Mark walked towards his desk at the far end of the room, "I'm just setting everything up so it's fully automated, and none get missed." he took his seat and started typing on the keyboard, "all set for when you're ready ma'am"
"Not yet," 'Mildred' replied, "We move too soon and they'll get wind of what we know! Where are we with tracking the two cops?"
"They're in a helicopter ma'am" another voice replied, it belonged to a youngish girl with long black hair and a nose ring. She was the youngest looking of the group, and seemingly the 'free spirit' with a semi gothic looks about her. "Travelling around one fifty kilometres an hour, they just left the coast, looks like they're headed for an island off the coast, either Whale Island or White Island, we're not sure yet"
"How long until you're sure?"
"They'll be over Whale Island in about ten minutes; if they put down we'll know from the GPS!"
"What about White Island?"
"That'll be another half hour flying time" the girl responded.
"Okay" Mildred looked round the room, “That means they’ll have a half hour ‘free time’ with their prisoners! SHIT”. She wasn’t happy at all, turning back to the team, she spoke a little louder than intended, "where are we with Murray?"
"Scorpions four and five are on their way" another of the operators replied, he was slightly older, but not much, blonde hair and a ponytail were his distinguishing features, and a small goatee. It made him look like ‘Buffalo Bill’ the legendary figure from the Westerns; the team had given him the name ‘Cody’,
"I know that you imbecile!" She felt like shouting, but all that came out was, "I know, how long before they get there?"
"Judging by the speed they're travelling," 'Cody' came back, "I'd say about two hours, that is if Murray stays this side of the peninsula!"
"Mobile?" Cody finished the question off, "has been so far, he's in the squad car!"
"Okay," she was in thought, "What else have I missed?
"Jenny's been working on the list of phone numbers we got from the team" Mark pointed to the operator furthest away, a petite young one, she looked to be in her late twenties, or possibly early thirties, short brown hair and eyes.
“What’s the story with those numbers?” she pointed to a screen that had just come alive, there were four lists on the screen, One in black, one in blue, one in green and a final one in red.
“I’m going through each number,” Jenny began, “The ones in black are the ones I’ve still to categorize, or find out how they link in with the big picture!”
“Okay” Mildred came back, “Walk me through what you’ve got”
“The Green ones are the harmless” Jenny replied, “or at least as far as I can tell they’re harmless, stuff like relatives wives, girlfriends etc. The blue are clearly in the organization, just not sure where they might sit as there’s not really been the time to work out any type of structure”
“You’ve still got three ‘red’ numbers, what are they?”
“They’re interesting” Jenny replied.
Mildred was about to rip into her verbally, but something told her to hear the girl out, “what do you mean by that?”
“It’s the origin of the calls” Jenny replied totally missing the frustration in Mildred’s voice, “Take this one here” she pointed to the first one on the list, “It’s a Satellite phone, and it’s at sea”
“What?” Mildred didn’t like what she’d just heard. If they were heading out to sea then it’s a whole different ball game, “What do you mean ‘at sea’?”
“Well it was when it made the calls” Jenny replied, “it was off the Chatham Islands for one, and in the Hauraki gulf for the other! I’m working on what ships were in the area at the time!”
Mildred wheeled round and faced ‘Mark’ directly, “You knew about this?”
“Not until about two minutes before you got here” Mark replied, “that’s what I meant about if it all turns to crap! I’m also working on finding out what ‘assets’ we can call up if we need them”
“What about the other numbers?” Mildred was still processing what she’d just heard, it wasn’t liked, but at least this team was working on a backup plan to the backup plan.
“You’re not going to like either of these.” Jenny replied, “the first one’s a frequency hopper, but it’s the second one I’m worried about.”
“Why the worry?”
“Boss” Mark cut in, “I think I recognise where it originated from, by the look of it, the call came from London, England”
“It get’s worse” Jenny cut in, “The call came from inside M.I.6, at least that’s what the GPS is telling me!”
“Any chance it was from the pavement outside the building?” Mildred really didn’t like where this went, “GPS can only be accurate to within a hundred yards right?”
“The old GPS yeah” Jenny came back, “But not this one, it’s down to within millimeters, they didn’t use a company phone as far as I can tell, but a couple of ‘burner’ phones, and before you ask” she held her hand up, “It was encrypted and I’m working on cracking it!”
“A burner with encryption?” Mildred almost spat out, “that’s a new one on me! What about the last one” she brought the conversation back.
“That’s the curveball!” Jenny replied, “We only got about a tenth of a second transmission, so we weren’t able to pinpoint any position, or even work out what was said! My guess is”
“It’s a frequency hopper” Mildred cut her off, “They’re supposed to be illegal, but if you’ve got one either end they’re great as the FBI and ourselves can’t work out what you’re saying”
'A backup to THE backup'
“So, what you’re telling me,” Mildred took the latest information in, “is we’ve got a Sat phone somewhere out at sea, and another unjammable phone ‘out there’ along with someone at M.I.6 involved, is that right?”
The whole team looked sheepish, no one likes to admit that despite their best efforts they just might have been outsmarted, Mark was the one who broke the silence, “That’s not all, it seems the frequency hopper was the one that originated the call, that’s why we picked it up, we don’t know where they are, but we know they’re the boss!”
“Who were they calling?”
“The Sat phone, who then called Murray and two other numbers, they’re the ones with the notes beside them, we think one was to lay into Murray for the fiasco with the McLaren and the other was to order some goons into Cavell’s apartment!”
“So we’ve got the other guy then?” Mildred asked.
“Yes, we confirmed that with the numbers the police were looking for, naturally they don’t know that yet” Mark carried on, “Following on from that I’ve been looking at what assets we can call on if we need to launch an ‘offshore’ op”
“Please tell me you’ve got good news!” Mildred replied.
Mark took a moment to press a few keys on his computer, the large screen at the end of the room came to life with a map, there were a couple of dots on it. Mildred recognized the two islands they’d been talking about, but further northeast, a long way northeast was another dot.
“Her Majesty's New Zealand Ship Wellington’s on her way back from fisheries patrol in the Kermadec Islands,” Mark said, “She’s about three hundred miles northeast of the Eastern Cape at the moment and doing twelve knots, going to full speed she can be within range of the RHIBs she carries within about three hours, that is if we need her!”
“What else does she carry?”
“Normally a sea sprite helicopter” Mark replied, “but hers was used in a sea rescue four hours ago, she’s enroute to Gisborne and won’t be back with the Wellington until at least tomorrow morning!” he pressed a few more keys, pulling up the full details of the Wellington’s compliment and armaments, “she’s got two RHIBs (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) both fitted with high performance outboards, they can hit sixty knots without breaking a sweat, and a range at that speed of about seventy miles, through the captain’s likely to have a fit!” he half warned.
“Let him” she replied, “How many can they carry?”
“Each one takes six!” Mark replied relieved that they at least had the workings of a plan of nothing else, “that’s one seaman to steer the boat and five operatives each, the RHIB can carry a medium machine gun, but that cuts the operators down to four each!”
“Sounds like a plan.” She replied, “Get the captain on the line, and don’t take any crap from him!”
Things are heating up now, what was supposed to be a holiday has turned into a full fledged rescue mission, and a 'take down' of some seriously bad 'dudes'.
The team isn't just up against some criminal gangs, but some serious funding, and it looks like the criminals might even know who's coming for them!
We'll have to explore that next time though.
Thanks for reading, and don't forget to leave a comment.