Shadowplay

Still tip-toeing through the material; next week there shall be more weapon action.

A time travel two years prior to the events in this piece in The assassination of Steven Merritt

Shadowplay

28th of September, 2024

Outbreak day

“Senator Merritt! Senator Merritt! How would you comment on the development of the events from earlier today?”

“Senator Merritt, what would you say to the people of America? How would you assure them the streets are safe?”

“Senator Merritt, wouldn’t you agree that the statement you made two weeks prior to the breaking and entering in the new Prime Industries facility, which was that your impenetrable defense system will be taking over the national security of the country, has been completely destroyed and proven weak after what happened today? The safety has been compromised; what are your actions from now on?”

Steven Merritt stopped on the last marble step of the U.S. Capitol building. Chief of Security Paul Mulligan stood on his right.

“Currently the police force and its officers are managing to contain the wave of people protesting in the city center, and no military involvement is considered necessary. I can assure our citizens it will all be over before the day ends. My only plea towards the people watching is to remain calm.”

The senator smiled.

“What about the weapons stolen from your company? Has a list been made; do you senator know what is missing and what may outburst over the public?”

Steve Merritt opened his mouth but Chief Mulligan waved his large hand to attract the attention of the journalists.

“It has been made. The weapons have been located and are being collected and stored into safety as we speak. Now please, no more questions”

The senator and Paul Mulligan made their way to the black Mercedes limo, followed by a dozen journalists and cameras.

A reporter turned over to JS TV’s camera “While senator Merritt was unable to answer how his flawless system was breached earlier today our spokesmen downtown tells us the situation at the heart of the city continues to be hot and may derail once more. The President is about to give a spe..”

The voice of the anchorman was interrupted as the sensor monitor turned black.

“That’s enough.”

The two men sat in the backseat of a car parked in an alley downtown. The parade of posters and shouting through megaphones people marched before them. The riot was growing.

“Where do you think the “culprit” is now?”

The older man chuckled. It was a sour chuckle.

“He’s sipping his whiskey in Merritt’s office”

The younger man nodded.

“As you suspected”

The older mam’s eyes sparkled behind the glasses.

“This is theater. Each act welcomes more actors to the stage and the plot becomes more complicated. At one point the audience is unsure whether to trust the main characters. But still, they stay until the curtain falls. We’re merely at the beginning of this performance Jaquel. And we want a peak backstage. Merritt, he is only a string being pulled at the right moment. And that moment is now.”

“We know the outcome of his actions.  They need to be prevented.”

An envelope with pictures of a building in a desert region secured by huge machineguns with Prime Industries logo on them was handed to Jaquel. A yellow package containing two devices was also given to him.

“We believe the so-called stolen guns are strapped from their specialties and filled with blanks, whilst those of the armed troops are not. If you fail there will be anarchy tomorrow. There will be death. You are aware you’ ll be in danger at all times. There are powerful men watching today. The faceless ones. They will want to see more of Prime Ind. weapons in action. Let us disappoint them for now. First Merritt. Then the rest. “

The younger man, a tall brunette with a scar on his left cheek nodded again and stepped out of the vehicle.

Across the street a boy nearly eighteen was smoking a joint and observing the scandal. The view bored the teen and he backed to find another path around the scene when he spotted something metallic sticking from behind a trash can. He looked around. Then he picked up a handgun. On its handle there was a fingerprint recognition center. The boy thought “cool” and placed a thumb. The biometric system, intentionally set to enable firepower to anyone’s DNA, analyzed the current owner in 1.2 seconds and the LED light on the back of the pistol flashed green. The internal timer set the pistol to be active for 120 seconds. The system registered the lack of original ammunition. The power dropped by 78%.

The weapon felt heavy in his hands. He pointed it at the trash can and fired.

In the meantime an armored van pulled over at the barricade set in the middle of the street and more police officers jumped out of it. They wore helmets and held shields pushing back the crowd.  One officer stopped and stepped away. His helmet was registering the activity of one weapon from the list with stolen items from Prime Industries. The helmet scanned the street. The heat sensor picked movement in the back alley, left on the street. The search through Prime Ind.’s base gave a positive ID on the weapon – Ultim Digital; Prototype weapon ID code: X3422; Characteristics: 22. caliber, semi-automatic, 15 double penetrable bullet shells at 20x distance, optional attachable laser corpus IRIS with zoom-in.

The cop made his way to where the boy was still admiring the gun.

“Drop the weapon and we won’t have a problem okay kid?”

The boy looked at the heavily armed officer; his helmet was shining black, the visor not revealing the face, but reflecting the city lights. He gripped the handle of the gun tighter and pointed it at the officer.

“I found it. It’s mine.”

The officer lifted his shotgun; the laser aligned vertical on the handle was red; and pointed at the boy.

“Drop it kid.”

Terrified and shaking the boy squeezed the trigger.

The red light immediately switched to green as the shotgun spat a single bullet.

The blank bullet ricocheted from the armor of the cop; the pointy bullet whirled, for a split second the noises around going numb. The boy was thrown back by the impact of the bullet hitting his chest; he dropped before his fake bullet had bumped into the Nano suit of the cop.

The visor lifted, two blue eyes staring in amazement.

The atmosphere heated.

Riot.

 Not the end…soon to be more! 

The Hunting Prey

Early with this flash, aren’t I?

Am just letting you know with this post, I’ll be going away for the weekend, and sadly I won’t be having any Internet connection over where we’re staying, so I won’t be able to read the entries for this Friday and comment on them untill Monday. I’m a bit over the limit with this piece, I know and I beg for your forgiveness. Again.  Promise I will fix it asap. It’s 5 am now, I must be up in couple of hours. I’m leaving you with this piece which does not include hi-tech weapons (that’s next week!) :D Enjoy!

 

The Hunting Prey 

South Africa, somewhere near the border with Namibia….

 

There were men chasing him. Rich men with heavy guns.

The dry ground beneath his feet sizzled with the heat of August; the land ahead was an ancient mother with no tears to shed. Deion felt more alone than ever.

Tiny streams of sweat crawled down his spine, and descended from his armpits, and down to his belly making the shirt stick to his skin and itch. The crimson number 2 painted on the back of his cloth had smeared, but he was sure they would know it was him and not some Bushmen.

Rivers of sweat ran down his black forehead. The salty taste touched the corner of his chapped lips and he raised a shaky hand to push away the rolling droplets. Then he began to run again.

The mountainous desert landscape stretched under the vast horizon. Deion slid down a rocky vertical plain and crossed a small flat sandy plain.

That was when he heard the roar of the jeep and the shouts of his hunters.

Deion rushed and crouched behind a chopped piece of volcanic rock that started a trail formation of smaller and bigger rocks of the same material.

He waited.

Six boys, some his age some older were kidnapped and brought to an abandoned village 6 hours ago, given numbers of bright red paint and told to run, run as fast and as far as they can. Then the bearded man with the aviator sunglasses fired his rifle and the boys scattered like frightened rabbits.

Deion believed all the others to be dead.

The powerful machine climbed the rocky hill then slowly descended and stopped. Three men, minus the driver stood up in the back of the vehicle, rifles, snipers in meaty hands pointing at the rocks, the sand, the odd Halfmensboom tree.

“I saw him ran towards here, the little bastard” roared one of the men.

“He’s worth the money I, Mr. Yants and you Mr. Holbrooke spent on this safari. I say the boy has proven to be quite the entertaining catch, wouldn’t you agree Jones?” The driver nodded. The man with the aviator glasses smiled “I propose a bet- whoever shoots the boy first gets to keep a souvenir. Something that will linger, maybe even decorate the fireplace.”

“Isn’t that against the rules? The body should remain whole”

“Mr. Holbrooke I believe “against the rules” does not bode well here. After wall, the rules are made up by men like us. Men who despise rules and obeying to them”

“Then, agreed”

“Agreed”

Deion listened to their conversation, his heart pounding in his chest so loud he feared they might hear him. He searched for an escape path. Back on the higher point he had seen the glimmer of the sun on the surface of the Orange River, but it was impossible to reach it, not with them lurking around, so close, so deadly close.

He prayed they continue the search further.

The squeaky sound of something heavy releasing its weight from the back of the jeep froze his blood.

The metallic tongue bit, as the rifle ate a bullet.

Deion peaked from his hideout. They were with their back to him, at least forty feet away.

An idea hit. Deion grabbed a large rock. He threw the rock in the direction from which he had come, landing it somewhere between the gaps of sharp stones. In the quiet surrounding the clack! of stone- to- stone echoed and the human hunters stretched their necks, their nostrils widening in anticipation and they climbed the slippery ridge.

Seizing the opportunity Deion sprinted, down the path of rocks, maneuvering around them.

“Fuck! He’s getting away!”

The façade fell off and with it a rain of skin penetrating, meat chopping bullets.

None of them hit..

Deion skipped down another rock formation, the ammo flying past him when the sniper entered the game, and fired.

Deion choked. The African landscape tumbled before his eyes, the drums of the tribes filling his ears with their thick, loud rhythm as the sun set thousand times and as the sun raised a thousand more; the scent of something wild entered his being and roared inside his brain, making room for itself in his skin. The African shaman sang before smoldering with herbs fire, and fire was what blazed everywhere around Deion. As he fell in the hands of the All Mother, Kgosi, Masego, Boipelo, Tau, and Unathi fell along with him, the generations of his family with Nosizwe first to give birth of a God, fell with a shattering thunder, a storm that formed above the plains, a happening that marked the people and the land many years ago.

 

“Did you get him?” asked Holbrooke. He was dead excited.

“I’d be damned if I didn’t. This lovely weaponry here should be able to take down an elephant!” The Aviators man laughed.

They got back in the jeep and drove down.

 

“I swear I saw him fall down right here!” cried the shooter

“There’s blood. He couldn’t be far; must ‘of dragged his body somewhere in the rocks.”  said Yants.

 

“Just so you know, I shot him and the first shot counts. I get the souvenir as we agreed”

“We agreed the first to shot him on spot to take home a souvenir. That’s yet to be decided”  growled Holbrooke .

Something shifted before their eyes; a fast shadow, jumping the rocks with ease. Impossible. It was a ghost, too quick to recognize, to shoot at.

“What the…” managed to spit out Aviators Glasses when a low grow came from behind.

Eyes orange as the sunset watched them hungrily. Saliva dripped from the maw, sharp teeth uncovered to greet. The claws dug into the stone, the nostrils huffed out fiery steam. The black marked head narrowed, the tail swooshed up high and pointed like a scorpions tail, trembling as the beast hissed. It was preparing to attack.

A red dot on its wide chest oozed blood as it inhaled.

The men stood in disbelief.

The shape shifting cheetah god had awoken. Deion observed from his eyes, as the god observed from boys eyes; they were one.

Holbrooke’s finger played on the trigger of his rifle, but his mind was blank, unable the command.

All of a sudden it was too late.

The rock crumbled under the massive push the cheetah gave it as it jumped to tear the men.

The ancient mother no longer shed tears; she no longer had ears. Their cries remained a secret, their bodies became dust, but Deion kept a few souvenirs and offered them to his long passed elders and to his forgotten gods.

The shadow of a cheetah merged with that of a young naked boy, with a scar on his chest with no ache, as he went on a journey in the African plains.

 

The assassination of Steven Merritt

Here’s a very, very late Friday flash. Am not entirely happy with how the piece turned out, but my mind has been occupied with larger projects and university issues. But, I do hope you find it somewhat interesting. Enjoy!

The assassination of Steven Merritt

Washington D.C., Friday 23rd of March 2022

Residential House of Senate 19:45 PM

“Would you like a glass sir?”

“A glass madam?”

The finest champagne filled the finest crystal glasses with sparkly bubbles and light taste.

The waiters hovered between the well-known and sophisticated guests offering them the elixir of the higher classes.

A wide variety of sea hors d’oeuvre were served on shiny plates, while the smooth, silky sound of the saxophone accompanied by the gentle caress of the piano entertained the present and the newly arriving at the House of Senate located on 2300 Pennsylvania Avenue SE to celebrate the new elected senator Steven Merritt, former CEO of Prime Industries, the largest technological manufacturer in the United States and Asia.

The press was stationed near the entrance awaiting the new senator to arrive. Dozen photographers lurked around. Some of the newspapers were to pay them a great deal of cash to catch the senator in an embarrassing moment during the speech he was to deliver.

When Steven Merritt walked in guarded by two of his black suited men and his secretary Claus Germain all applauded. He shook hands with other senators, diplomats, ambassadors, politicians, philanthropists, cultural guru’s, experts in public relations and many more. He smiled politely to all of them, accepting their congratulations, acknowledging their praise. His suit, maybe Armani, maybe Tom Ford, embed with sweat sensors, an inside jacket pocket removable display hooked up with a hologram option and connected to Prime Ind. satellite, delivering news, sports and other goods, was the latest innovation in men’s clothing and was surely to be a word in both fashion and tech magazines.

With an energetic hop Steve Merritt stepped onto the podium and stood behind the microphone stand.

“Thank you all for coming here tonight. I am beyond grateful; although I’m sure your presence has nothing to do with me, but with that delicious sea cuisine. And the free champagne.” Senator Merritt laughed.

The guests laughed as well.

“As you all know after my departure from Prime Industries as a CEO, my place there was taken by the lovely Debra Higgins, who is here tonight”

A woman in sparkling silver dress raised her glass. The guests applauded her.

“But by heart I am first and foremost a scientist, a developer” The reporters shifted. Something big was about to be announced. “In fact, continued Merritt, as the new senator I am pleased to announce my first big step towards making America an even greater country. Prime Industries, with the blessing and approval of the President, the senate, and the board of directors is taking a step up in its craft, and will be opening a new factory, only for producing high-tech weaponry for the U.S. army and the forces of the police departments in each state!”

The journalists went for a verbal attack, shouting over one another. The quests applauded, with a tear in their eyes, for their new guiding star Steve Merritt was surely to lead them into a far safer and modern world, absolutely dominating over the rest of the planet. Prime Industries was a giant, suffering from gluttony, gulping every local and foreign small developer on its way to immortality.

A large screen dropped from the ceiling, pictures of prototypes of weapons, suits, automobiles playing on a slideshow. A U.S. sergeant came on stage wearing a prototype Nano tech armor, and handling a large sound “Viber JX” gun. He demonstrated the abilities of the suit.

Steve Merritt was proudly watching the show and the soon to be real creations, and Debra Higgins joined him on the podium, the two firmly shaking hands for their upcoming project. That’s when a bullet flew through Merritt’s forehead and splattered blood and brains over the screen and Debra’s pretty face and dress. He tumbled backwards, and fell from the podium. Everyone screamed and confused stumbled in an attempt to reach the doors.

Security was already pulling the body away, securing the perimeter, blocking exits.

Chief of security Paul Mulligan escorted the convoy of four men carrying the lifeless, blood dripping senator.

They entered the senator’s cabinet and laid the body on the couch.

The men were silent

‘I probably should make a call, inform the senator was just…shot” Claus Germain whimpered, pale and shaking, staring at the body of his boss.

“The press has already done that” growled Paul Mulligan. He turned to the bodyguards, his gun in hand. “I want to know how the hell that happened, where that bullet came from. Find me the shooter. I don’t care how you do it, just find me that son of a bitch! He has to be among the crowd. Search through and through, and ignore all questions asked. From now on the building is sealed. We don’t have much time before the President shows up. Get more men. Go”

The four guards, two of which the personal security of the late senator exited the room. The last one, a tall brunette with a scar upon his left cheek turned to have another glimpse at the body. As he closed the door behind him, he slid the Time Stop gun into his inner pocket and pulled out his 9mm instead.

The future was prevented. Steven Merritt was no longer a threat.

Mission accomplished.