Takedown

“Arrest them all!” The lead officer shouted as the police stormed into a run-down building where a notorious gang is squatting in. They have been after the gang for months but with no promising leads. This is the only chance they have to take them down and bring them to justice. 

The armed officers along with SWAT entered the building, checking every single room to see if there are any gang members inside. “Every room is clear, there’s no one here.” One of the officers reported. The lead officer sighed in frustration, angry that the gang has eluded the long arm of the Law once again. “Damn it!” He exclaimed, punching the nearest wall with his fist, creating a sizable dent. The other officers and SWAT members looked on, all disappointed that good has not triumphed today.

“I know that you want to put in a win today, but you couldn’t have known that the gang wouldn’t be at the building.” The police captain said when the lead officer came into his office to give him his report on the raid. “With all due respect, Sir, I have it on good authority that the gang would be at the building, someone must have tipped them off that we were coming so they left before we could get to them.” The police captain sighed as he leaned back in his chair, unsure of what to say to put his officer’s mind at ease.

After a brief moment, he said, “Just focus on getting justice for the people that need it. I’m sure that the gang will resurface again and when they do, you and your team will be there to take them down.” The lead officer let a small smile appear on his countenance at the police captain’s words. “Will do, Sir, and thank you.” The police captain nodded in response and the lead officer got up and left the office.

As soon as the officer is out of earshot, the police captain pulled out his cellphone and dialled a number. He then waited for the call to be answered and when it was, he said, “Get the rest of the gang out of the city as soon as you can. I’ll join you when I am able to.” He then ended the call and put the phone back in his jacket pocket.

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Museum Massacre

“I didn’t mean to kill them!” The suspect in handcuffs exclaimed, hoping that the detective sitting in front of him will believe him. The detective looked at the suspect, her face an emotionless mask. She wanted to believe that he didn’t mean to kill all those people at the museum with a biological weapon, but she’s having a hard time doing so given that the evidence all points to this man.

She flipped through the file that she had on him and aside from the fact that he is a middle-class businessman working at a well-respected company, there isn’t anything that would paint him as the one that released the gas on all those innocent people. Yet there’s something about him that makes her suspicious. He told her that he was at home watching a hockey game on TV at the time of the attack, but after interviewing his neighbours, his alibi didn’t hold up.

A few of them said that they remember seeing him at his house, but he didn’t stay there for long. “He went out around 9pm,” one neighbour said. “I was taking out the recycling when I saw him, I asked him where he was going and he said that he’s going out somewhere. I wanted to ask where but didn’t, figured that he’s one of those non-social types.” The detective noted it in her notepad and thanked the neighbour before heading back to her car.

Snapping out of her thoughts, she left the interrogation room much to the suspect’s chagrin. He yelled after her, asking if he is allowed to leave. The detective paid him no mind as she exited, closing the door behind her. She then made a beeline for her desk in the bullpen and sat down in her chair. Opened a new tab on her internet browser, she began looking for anything that she could use to tie the man in custody to the crime. Finding none, she let out a frustrated huff and ran a hand through her hair.

“There’s got to be something that can connect him to the museum attack,” she muttered under her breath. She then flipped through the file on the suspect again, thinking that she had missed something the first time she read it. After scanning it over a few times, she all but threw the file down onto her desk, the frustration of the case catching up to her. Rubbing a hand over her face, she glanced at the clock on the wall: 6pm. Maybe I can find something tomorrow.  She thought, deciding to head home and sleep rather than stay at the precinct and pull an all-nighter. Closing the tabs on her computer, she turned the machine off and walked out of the building. Meanwhile, back in the interrogation room, the handcuffed suspect called out to the rest of the law enforcement officers: “Any chance one of you could let me out of here?”

MI-Secret

I screwed up. I literally fucked up this time. I know that I shouldn’t have let this happen, but I did. I put my family in danger, and that in itself is unforgivable. Then again, when one works for British Intelligence, there’s bound to be certain dangers and risks. Yes, I am a spy and my family is kept in the dark about it until now. I was talking on the phone with headquarters and didn’t know that someone was listening in to the conversation. By the time I realized that fact, it was too late. My secret is out.

I managed to make it back to MI6 without any more problems and as soon as I stepped foot in the building, a fellow agent came up to me and said that M needed to see me. Knowing what’s about to happen, I thanked the agent and made my way to my boss’s office. When I arrived, I saw that she was talking to someone. She then noticed me standing outside and gestured for me to come in. Opening the glass door, I entered the glass-windowed office and stood ramrod straight despite the fear that’s creeping up on me.

She then dismissed the person that she was speaking to. The female agent turned on her heel and briskly made her exit. As soon as the agent left, the head of MI6 focused her attention on me, a disappointed look on her face. It was the kind of look mothers would make when her children have done something really bad. “What you have done has put the entire organization in jeopardy,” she said, putting her hands on her waist.

“I should fire you for this,” she continued, her blue-green eyes boring into mine. “Then again, you are the best agent we have so I can’t do that even if I wanted to.” Heaving a sigh, she sat down in her chair, picked up a pen and started to write on a piece of her personal stationery. I couldn’t make out what she’s scribbling down, but I had a feeling that it’s nothing good. “I’ll try to smooth things over as best I can,” she said after a brief moment of silence. “You can go now.” I then hastily made my way out of the office without a single word.

Later that night, when I went home, I found my wife sitting in her favourite chair. Her nose buried between the pages of a book. I greeted her by her name and she put the book down and threw herself into my arms. “I forgive you, I forgive you, I forgive you.” She repeated breathlessly as she kissed me with fervour. Kissing her back I wondered what it was she forgave me for. Our passion inevitably carried us to the bedroom and it wasn’t until much later when we laid in bed in a tangle of limbs that I realized she spoke those words not to me but to herself. My own wife is the one who revealed to the world that I am an MI6 agent. Bloody hell.

Revenge

They took everything from me. Now it’s time for me to take back what is rightfully mine, whatever it takes. After all, they do say that revenge is a dish best served cold.

I had been arrested by the FBI on charges that I think are ludicrous. They accused me of killing the people that worked for me at my company. I mean, sure I ended their lives, but they deserved what they got. It’s not like I’m going to let it slide and watch them destroy the very thing that I had worked so hard to build. No, it is never going to happen, not on my watch.

My lawyer has defended me at every turn, much to the chagrin of the FBI. It’s nice to have someone who will bend over backwards for you when you need them to. Then again, they’re all in it for the money. I sat in the interrogation room chair, hands cuffed in front of me, and didn’t confess a single thing as one agent after the other grilled me for hours on end, an emotionless mask on my face.

“Tell us what happened,” the first agent that interrogated me said. “Maybe we can cut you a deal with the D.A.” I stared intently at him, my mouth tightly shut. The agent emitted a frustrated sigh as he got up from his chair and left the room. I watched him leave with grim satisfaction as I am once again left alone with my thoughts. If I want to exact my revenge, I can’t do it from inside the FBI while in handcuffs. I would need someone on the outside, and I know just the person to help me do it.

The next time an agent comes in to question me, I requested that I be allowed to make a phone call. “I’m aware that this is only permitted in prisons, but I need to get in touch with someone.” The agent gave me a skeptical look before complying with my request. She took out her own phone and placed it on the table. Sliding the device toward me, she said, “One phone call. If you pull any funny business, we will add a few more years to your eventual sentence.” Resisting the urge to roll my eyes, I took the phone and dialled a familiar number. After a couple of rings, the call was picked up.

“What can I do for you, Ms. Birke?” A deep, male voice asked. “I need your help with something and I need it done in a few hours, can you do it?” A pause came from the other end before the man replied, “Yes, Ms. Birke, I can do it.” I smiled widely for the first time today and thanked him before ending the call. “What was the call about?” The female agent inquired. Smile still in place, I told her in a casual tone, “Oh, just settling an old score is all, nothing you need to worry your pretty little head over.”

The Infinite Podcast

She didn’t expect a response. She figured that it was worth a shot even if it didn’t work out the way that she wanted it to. A few days after she submitted the form, she got an email detailing the rundown of the podcast that she is going to take part in. Mouth agape, she felt both excited and nervous at the same time. This would be her first ever podcast, and she’s not sure if she will be able to sound intelligent enough during the recording session. Thinking that she should do some research into the matter, she quickly typed in a few search terms, hoping they will give her the answers that she’s looking for.

On the day of the podcast, she still felt a little bit on edge. While it’s not a video call, she is worried that she might not be able to answer the questions that would be asked. “Okay, you’re freaking out too much,” she told herself. “Just do the best you can and hope that all the unintelligible stuff will be edited out.” Satisfied with that decision, she stared at the clock on her laptop, waiting for the moment that the podcast will begin.

When the time came, she clicked on the link that was sent to her by the host. She then installed the software needed to record the podcast. Plugging in her microphone, she tested the sound quality before the host came online. After a few trial and error attempts, she managed to get the audio working and the host started to record.

They talked about all things television and movies. From what’s coming soon to theatres to the shows that she is most excited about. She gave each of the questions a suitable response and tried to speak in a professional manner while keeping it casual. Towards the end, the host wrapped up the podcast with a couple of closing remarks and thanked her again for taking the time out of her day to do this. “It’s my absolute pleasure,” she said. “I look forward to the day when we can do this again.” The host said that he’ll keep her posted and ended the call. Feeling a sense of accomplishment, she went back to doing what she does best, the memory of the Infinite Podcast still fresh in her mind.

I Forgive You

“I forgive you.” Three words that you would rarely hear me say. I have been betrayed far too many times. More times than I could count. It’s not that I didn’t want to forgive the ones who had stabbed me in the back, it’s that they didn’t deserve to be forgiven. It may sound harsh, but that’s the way I deal with things like this.

It all started a few months ago. Joseph had dropped me off at the lab before heading to the FBI. I went downstairs to bone storage to identify some ancient remains as we didn’t have a case to solve. I stood beside the light table, holding the left femur bone in my hand. I examined the bone closely, mentally noting each and every fracture that this person had sustained when he/she was alive. Just then, my phone started to ring, causing me to break my concentration. Fishing out the device from my pocket, I answered the call.

“Hey, honey,” a male voice greeted from the other end. A smile appeared on my face as I recognized the voice. “Hi, Dad, how are you?” There was a slight pause before my father replied, “I’m fine, Erin. How are you? Has that FBI partner of yours come to his senses and asked you to marry him?” Rolling my eyes, I bit back a retort with as much restraint as I can muster and said, “No, Dad, Joseph hasn’t asked me to marry him. We’ve only just started dating, so the notion of marriage is not at the forefront of our minds. Did you call me in the middle of the day just to ask me that?” I asked.

A sigh was heard over the phone as my father gathered his courage. “Well, it’s sort of why I called, but the real reason is that I’m in trouble and I need your help.” Curious and concerned, I asked my father what kind of trouble he has found himself in. “It’s complicated, honey, just please help me get out of this mess,” he pleaded. Something then clicked in my brain as the words left my Dad’s lips. He promised not to do it again and he still did it. I thought, my anger rising.

Taking a calming breath, I said, “Dad, either tell me what’s going on or I swear I will hang up the phone.” My father heaved another sigh as he finally told me the truth: “I hurt someone, badly, and now the police are after me. I need to find a place to lay low for a while so I thought I would stay with you until all this blows over.” That did it, the straw that broke the camel’s back. Gritting my teeth, I said to the man I call my father, “You promised me that you wouldn’t hurt anyone ever again, even if it’s to protect me and my sister. You have broken that promise so I’m afraid that you will have to find somewhere else to stay.” My Dad’s voice then became quiet as he asked, “Will you ever forgive me?” Letting out a sigh of my own, I replied, “I have forgiven you too many times, I’m uncertain that I will be able to do it again, goodbye Dad.” I then ended the call, hoping that I had made the right decision.

Lost and Found

It all happened within a split second. She was going from store to store, doing her usual shopping. It was her birthday so she figured that she could get herself something nice. Her favourite orange pink hat safely tucked inside her jacket pocket. Music from her personal playlist blared from her headphones, allowing her to be immersed in a melodic trance. She browsed through the store for a few more minutes before heading out. When she reached inside her jacket to retrieve her hat to put it on, her eyes went as wide as dinner plates. Her orange-pink hat is gone.

Panic surged through her as she rushed back into the store, thinking that it must be on the floor somewhere. She looked from top to bottom without drawing attention to herself but she couldn’t find her hat anywhere. Disappointment washed over her in waves as her shoulders slumped. The hat was supposed to be her mother’s. She had purchased it online but ended up giving it to her after trying it on. “It looks better on you than me,” she had said. Logically speaking, she could get another one from the same seller online, though if she were to tell her mother that she had lost the hat, she is absolutely certain that she will never hear the end of it. “I have to find it,” she said to herself. “I have to find it.”

She went out of the store and retraced her steps, all the while keeping her eyes glued to the floor. She headed up the escalators and continued her search. When she walked toward another store, she saw something reddish orange on the ground. Feeling hopeful, she all but ran up and saw that it was her hat. Bending down, she picked it up and dusted it off and placed it on her head. Immense relief flooded through her entire being as she began making her way out of the mall.

As she exited the building, she couldn’t help but think that Lady Luck had smiled on her today. Things could have ended in a disaster but it ended up being a happy ending instead. She then made a promise to herself to always keep her hat on her head, or put it in her bag if she carried one. One only gets lucky once, they don’t get lucky twice.