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Second Mission, Part VII

Posted on Feb 04, 2018 @ 6:05pm by Chloe Nielsen
Edited on on Feb 04, 2018 @ 6:05pm

Mission: Section 31

“Second Mission, Part VII”

Location: West city, BETA-525
SD: [2.18] 0130.2246
Scene: Hotel entrance -> Hover car-> Hangar

Two women, beautiful, all dressed up for an evening at a fancy hotel were standing at the entrance – though beneath all that glamour, they were dangerous intelligence operatives. Minerva Evans had earlier contacted Humanity Hope’s HQ for an impromptu meeting with Natasha Volkova because of an issue with her transaction – as a way for them to get inside the complex. Evan’s request was granted and a car was sent to pick up Dr. Ophelia Fischer, Minerva’s cover with no idea that Chloe was tagging along. She spotted the car in the horizon, approaching downwards towards them.

As the car pulled up beside them with a soft, whirring sound, the hatch to the rear passenger area lifted and Minerva promptly stepped inside with the blonde following suit. After the hatch closed, the driver, a young man in his early 20s, with mousy brown hair and a clean shaven face, glanced behind, when his eyes widened in shock. “Ms. Henstridge! I was told only Dr. Fischer needed to be picked up.”

“Well,” Minerva said, giving him a sweet smile. “I ran into Ms. Henstridge here at the hotel and she is staying as a guest at your residence. So I told her she could ride with me.” But then the man’s expression became serious, eyeing Chloe with suspicion.

“Wait a minute...” He narrowed his eyes as they fixed on the agent. “Wasn’t a security team supposed to escort you? Why aren’t you…?” He paused, when Evans flashed a dagger at him. Suddenly his eyes shone with fear, mouth wide open. His body tensed as the red haired woman held the knife over his throat, her blue eyes glistening with mischief.

Minerva continued to smile sweetly at him as he cowered in fear. “Now now, that’s not the way to talk to a lady.”

Chloe leaned forward, giving him an icy stare. “Take us to the complex or my friend will kill you.” The other woman pressed the dagger against his neck.

The driver gulped and nodded. “Okay,” he squeaked and as he was about to turn around, Evan’s cold voice stopped him mid-way.

“No funny business…otherwise.” She waved the dagger.

The man turned his attention forward, pressing a finger on the console. Soon, the car lifted off and joined the traffic. Chloe leaned over to the front and reached for the driver’s ears, placing silver earpieces over them. The driver just remained still, focusing on the path ahead. “Good,” the Canadian said, glancing at her companion. “He won’t be able to listen in our conversation.” The earpieces, a Section 31 design, blocked audio signals, meaning the driver wouldn’t be able to hear their voices.

“You must be having a lot of questions,” Minerva remarked, smiling at the blonde.

“You bet I do.” Chloe’s expression hardened, a hint of irritation in her voice. “For starters, what was that about back in Toronto?”

The former SFI officer shrugged, that sweet smile still gracing her features. “Oh I just wanted to say hello.”

“Hello?” Chloe looked at her incredulously. At Evans’ nod, the blonde continued in a calm voice. “You tricked me and my sister by pretending to be her boss. Then you temporarily paralyzed her with a dart and picked a fight with me – all to say hello.” She frowned, shaking her head. “You know if you wanted to say hi, you might have just called me up for a drink.”

“And what fun would that have been.” Minerva grinned. “Oh come on, can you honestly tell me you didn’t have fun? I know I did.”

“There was no need to drag my sister into your ‘introductions’. She’s not part of our world.”

Evans shook her head, speaking in a soft voice. “Our families became a part of our ‘world’ the moment we signed up. Sure, we use aliases to hide our true identities but there is always the risk of our enemies finding out and hurting our loved ones.” The car jolted.

Chloe asked, touching her ring to turn off the driver’s earpiece, “What was that?”

The man shrugged, hesitancy in his voice. “A firebomb went past us, Ms. Henstridge.”

“Firebomb?” Nielsen raised an eyebrow. “Activate the window on my side. I need to see what’s going on.” A moment later, the window switched from a black screen to rows of tall buildings. However, what the agent witnessed, concerned her as she gazed at a gaping black hole in the middle sections of those buildings with shards falling off and then people on the ground running in different directions, causing a stampede. Her view was blocked when another car sped by them, nearly knocking the vehicle off course. Then two more cars flew past them, looking to be chasing the first one. Chloe spotted energy beams passed back and forth between the cars and sighed. A gang war. Within seconds, the battling vehicles sped off beyond their viewing distance. The agent touched her ring again to reactivate the signal blocker.

“You were wise to not get married and have a family,” Minerva said, continuing their earlier conversation.

The agent nodded, recalling from Evans’ file that the former SFI officer was married for a short time, the union resulting in one son. “Why did you stay away for all these years and haven’t tried clearing your name?”

“I knew it.” Minerva narrowed her eyes, her lips curling into a mischievous smile. “You are still with SFI, maybe even part of that ‘non-existent’ section.”

Chloe raised an eyebrow, though she clearly knew the ‘Red Mistress’ was referring to Section 31. But how did she know or she didn’t and was trying to fish for information. She could have possibly heard rumours and wanted a confirmation. But the agent wasn’t going to acknowledge Section 31’s existence.

Minerva winked, producing a dry chuckle. “The rest of the universe may believe you were forced out of SFI and now serving in a position at Starfleet Operations that involves lots of travelling but I’m not fooled. SFI wasn’t going to just let you go and so they kept your real position a secret.”

Chloe sighed, not even going to respond. Minerva was right though – as far as everyone knew, she was adjusting to life in a new department but in reality she was still a spy.

“The ‘non-existent’ section exists or used to, who knows.” The redhead shrugged, pulling a strand of hair behind her ear. “My former CO was one of them in addition to being a spy for the Romulans. That traitor confessed it all to me before I slit his throat.” So Evans found about Section 31 back when it was still run as an autonomous organization under Edgerton. The big question was did she know it was still running but by different management and operating under the full authority of the Federation Council.

“Rumour has it, if that section still existed, it has been de-clawed by the authorities and now comparable to a bunch of kittens.” She gave Chloe a cheeky smile.

Kittens? Seriously? The blonde was tempted to laugh at the other woman’s audacity or naivety. True, Section 31 was now put on a leash but it was still a formidable organization. They were a few minutes away from their destination and navigating through the traffic seemed to be challenging, judging by the numerous twists and turns, the driver had to make.

Now it was her turn to play the game, Evans started when they left the hotel. Chloe, sporting a cold smile, inquired, “Where have you been all these years or what have you been up to? It’s been like eleven or twelve years since you disappeared.”

“Uhm, you know, I’ve been everywhere,” she said in a casual tone. “Done lots of travelling, visited beautiful sites, basically leading the carefree life of a nomad.”

Chloe raised her eyebrow – yeah right. Life of a peaceful nomad, as if she was going to believe that story. Minerva was gone for over a decade and only resurfaced a few months ago, which the blonde found disconcerting. Why resurface now? Why not during the Neo-Essentialist crisis or even the Dominion war? Surely, an operative with her experience would have had some interest in those two conflicts. Or maybe she did but chose to remain hidden. So many questions about this strange woman, however the agent would deal with it another time as she had a more pressing situation to handle first.

The driver announced, “We’re approaching the entrance. I can’t go in, unless I send out my security code to gate control.”

Chloe, tapping her ring again to turn off the signal blocker, nodded. ““You can contact them to give the code but say anything about us and you’re dead.”

“Yes ma’am,” he said, gulping. “Car-1031 to Gate Control.”

[[Gate control here,]] came a dour sounding male voice. [[Your code, please.]] At the command, the driver danced his fingers on a panel to his right and looked up. [[Confirmed. Car-1031, you may proceed.]] The hover car entered the building and in a few minutes, reached the main hangar, where it came to a stop.

“Alright, we’re here,” the man informed, tapping his finger on the side panel, lifting the hatch on Chloe’s side.

“Thank you,” Chloe said, smiling as she jammed a hypospray on his neck. She watched as the man’s head moved downwards, chin resting on his chest. Well, he should be asleep for a couple of hours, thus preventing him from warning anyone of their arrival. Chloe stepped out of the car with Minerva close behind.

Two security guards and Stella – the young, perky, maitre d’, prone to giggling, greeted them. Not to her surprise, Stella curled her lips into a wide smile, while the security duo, a tall, clean shaven black man and another male with a reddish brown mustache, eyed them with suspicion.

“Greetings,” the brown haired woman spoke, the smile stuck to her lovely features. “Dr. Fischer, welcome back. I’m here to escort you to the conference room, where Ms. Volkova will join you after her meeting.” Noticing Nielsen, Stella’s smile widened, releasing that annoying giggle. “Ms. Henstridge, I wasn’t expecting you!”

The guard demanded, twirling his mustache and fixing his gaze on the blonde, “Where are your escorts?”

At lightning speed that stunned everyone, except Chloe, Minerva swung her arm, holding the dagger and slit his throat. The guard clutched his neck as blood spurted out and collapsed backwards on the ground. Stella, at the gruesome sight, erupted into an ear piercing scream. The other guard, with a panic stricken look at his fallen comrade, turned on his heel and began dashing for the exit. Minerva in a quick move, threw a golden object, its surface coated in crimson and shaped as a butterfly, at him, slicing the back of his neck. The butterfly shaped projectile concealed a thin, monofilament blade. The guard froze on spot and fell forward, face first on the floor. Now, both security guards were dead.

Chloe turned to Stella whose body convulsed in fear, the latter giving the blonde a pleading look. The agent took a step towards her.

“Please.” Stella’s voice cracked, her eyes welling with tears. “Don’t kill me. I’ll do anything…just please.”

Chloe said in a calm voice, “I won’t if you just do what I tell you.” At the young woman’s nod, she asked, “Where are they holding Kyle Ross, Poorna Mehta and her husband, Sanjay Nair?”

“In the lab.”

“And where’s that?” Chloe pressed on.

“It’s on a restricted floor. You can’t go there without authorization.” Even in her meek voice, there was a bit of defiance.

“Which I’m guessing you do.” At Stella’s nod, the Canadian ordered, “Alright, take us there.”

“But…” Stella made an attempt to protest but stopped when Evans flashed the dagger at her. “Okay, just follow me.” The two operatives followed the young woman to the lift.


Scene: Testing Lab

The doors parted, Chloe and Minerva followed Stella inside a large hemispherical room with a high ceiling. Stella, after announcing their arrival, excused herself and left the room. The two intelligence operatives walked down gray steps, carpeted in ocean blue, passing rows of consoles, until they reached the bottom, which opened up to a wide open space – a viewing area of sorts. Standing there were what seemed to be the whole board in attendance and Kyle Ross. Judging from the businessman’s darkened expression, the man was angry from likely arguing with HH prior to their arrival. The whole room crawled with security personnel with the chief, Asim Kamal whose eyes were fixed on them.

Further ahead, Chloe spotted the testing area as seen in the holo-footage, Ross showed her, only it was much wider. Like the one in the holo-recording, the area was surrounded by forcefields on three sides and a grey wall at the back. The agent’s gaze stopped at the front, where Poorna and a man with South Asian features, whom she recognized to be Sanjay, stood and then further away from them, standing against the wall were a bunch of individuals, belonging to different species. Chloe estimated there to be at least approximately two dozen in the group. Well, at least her assets were alive – so that was good news but for how long? The bad news was as Chloe feared – her cover was likely blown.

Natasha Volkova stepped forward, a thin smile caressing her features. “Ms. Henstridge, so nice of you to finally join us. I feared you’d never come.”

“Well, I’m glad to be here,” Chloe said, feigning a smile, though her pale blue eyes were as cold as ice.

Kamal approached, narrowing his eyes. “I don’t see your escorts anywhere.” His voice was calm, laced with doubt. “Where are they?”

“Well, a gang of locals ambushed us, while we were leaving the hotel. I managed to escape and get in the car but unfortunately your men were taken away.” The hardened expression on the security chief’s face indicated he didn’t believe her.

“It seems quite convenient that only you managed to escape while your escorts were captured by this gang.” The Russian cast her a suspicious glance.

Alia Jimenez, the so-called CEO of HH, rolled her eyes, exhaling a sigh of exasperation. “What’s so complicated about a bunch of aliens kidnapping our people? It happens all the time in this wretched city. Besides we have an immediate problem at hand. Ross, not selling to us and I’d like to know why.”

Tim Price, the head of HH operations, nodded. “Alia’s right. Mr. Ross, you owe us an explanation. Did you get a better offer, after all we know how greedy you are?” That last phrase contained traces of scorn.

Before Ross opened his mouth to respond, sounds of throat clearing caught everyone’s attention. Natasha, upon noticing Minerva for the first time, raised an eyebrow. “Dr. Fischer, what are you doing here? I asked Stella to have you wait in the conference room.”

Her mouth curling into a mischievous, yet sweet smile, Evans said, feigning an obvious German accent, “I heard rumours from an insider that you don’t plan on honoring our agreement and so Stella kindly, as per my request, brought me here so that I can find out for myself whether my suspicions were warranted.”

“Dr. Fischer, I assure you, I have every intention to honour our agreement.” Natasha’s voice filled with false sincerity, displaying a phony smile.

“Then why are they in the testing chamber?” Minerva’s voice was harsh.

Volkova glanced behind and her expression revealed a false outrage. “Ah, it looks like a mistake has been made. I will deal with the trial coordinator at once.” Turning to Evans, the Russian put on a weak smile. “Please accept my apologies, Dr. Fischer. Your package will be released to you immediately.”

“Thank you and you will receive your payment upon delivery of the package.”

Tim sighed, glancing around. “Well, now that Dr. Fischer’s satisfied, let’s get to the matter at hand. Mr. Ross, why?”

“It doesn’t matter why,” Kyle argued, anger seeping through his voice. “I made my decision and will not sell the weapon to you.”

“But why?” Alia demanded, her dark eyes burning with ire. “What made you change your mind? If you want more funds, then we can renegotiate.” She glanced at Chloe for a brief moment. “And Wilhelmina can help here.”

“I believe Ms. Henstridge may have something to do with it.” Natasha’s remark was acidic, a malevolent gaze in Chloe’s direction. This was likely the moment, Chloe believed was whether her cover as Wilhelmina Henstridge was blown or not.

Alia glared at the dark haired woman, her voice raised. “Oh you’re so ridiculous Natasha and frankly, I’m growing tired of your issues with Wilhelmina.”

“Is that so, Alia?” Volkova gave the other a fixed stare. “Did you know that Ms. Henstridge and Mr. Ross were together in his hotel room, when our security teams showed up?”

The black woman let out a snort, followed by a chuckle. “So what. The two share a past and got the hots for each other. Big deal.”

“You didn’t think it strange that Mr. Ross decided to not sell item to us after he came from that date?” Volkova lowered her voice, calm yet spilled out so much venom and met Chloe’s gaze. “I believe Ms. Henstridge has been manipulating all of us from the start, playing us like fools. I warned you all she shouldn’t be trusted.”

Jimenez snapped, “That’s it, Natasha. You’ve lost your mind. I propose we have an emergency board meeting and vote to remove Ms. Volkova from her position immediately.”

Ross said, ignoring Alia’s outburst, sporting a smug smile, “Actually, Wilhelmina helped me see the mistake I’d have made if I sold the weapon to you and to grow my business, I need to sell it to the bigger players.”

“Ha.” Natasha clapped, a look of vindication in her green eyes. “I knew it. There, Alia, do you see? She manipulated him. How do we even know she’s legitimate businesswoman?”

Kyle shouted, “Of course she is. I witnessed her up close, when she was dealing with my former employer.” His face became redder with anger, when Natasha snorted.

“Now everyone knows you don’t think with brain.” Volkova sneered at him. “Mr. Ross, she has you wrapped around her little finger. It’s pathetic when the only reason you rose from a mere driver to businessman was to gain her affection and apparently she took advantage of your desire for her.” Natasha turned her attention to the blonde, giving the agent a cold stare. “I do not believe she feels anything but contempt for you.”

Well, it wasn’t like Kyle’s feelings for her was a closely guarded secret. Chloe recalled, when she met Ross at the HH compound, it was in the dining hall, where others were present. So, pretty much, a lot of people in the room overheard the conversation, where Kyle reminded her of his strong desire for her. Then, at the corner of her eye, Chloe noticed inappropriate staring in hers and Evans’ directions and shook her head, spotting Tom, the guy in charge of the computer systems, standing behind a console.

Yes, peeping Tom was sending her leery gazes and that wasn’t surprising for a guy who had a blatant disrespect for others, particularly women’s privacy and dignity by spying on them through the use of the security cams. His mouth hung wide open – he didn’t seem to realize he’d flood the room with all that drool. His gaze briefly moved to Minerva’s chest, the latter wearing a low-cut dress.

Then he spoke in that loud, annoying, high pitched voice, his eyes fixed on the blonde. “Hey, I bet Wilhelmina must be having regrets choosing dumb, rock-hard abs over there.” He pointed at Kyle with that stupid smile again and then at himself, using a thumb to jab at his chest. “Over a handsome guy with brains.” But Chloe rolled her eyes, keeping her attention forward as Price spoke.

“Look Mr. Ross.” Tim’s voice was calm, yet traces of anger were visible. “If you want a higher price, then let’s sit down and renegotiate, inviting Ms. Henstridge to the table as well, where we can request her to raise her offer.”

“Oh absolutely.” Alia nodded, smiling. “Wilhelmina, if that’s the case, will you consider raising your offer?”

Chloe sighed. Well, perhaps just roll with it now. “See Alia, I was planning on meeting you tomorrow morning and inform you that I’d be withdrawing my offer.” She watched the black woman’s eyes widen, her mouth opening and shock enveloping her features.

“What?!? Why? I thought we were developing a rapport of sorts.”

The blonde met Jimenez’s gaze, speaking in a cold, detached tone. “Let me make this simple. Your business is floundering with no potential for growth and I don’t waste time with failures.”

Natasha let out another snort, glancing at her HH comrade. “You see, Alia. She has been manipulating us this whole time. She had no intention of getting into business with us because she isn’t who she claims.”

Chloe flashed a grin. “Well, who do you think I am?”

“You know, Ms. Henstridge,” Natasha began, moving towards the testing area, a wicked gleam in her eyes. “I have interesting story to tell you.” This wasn’t good as the Russian turned to Poorna, a cold smile gracing her features. “Earlier today, I discovered we have traitor in our midst. I caught Dr. Mehta doing something forbidden.” She paused, probably for dramatic purposes. “She visited her father and oh what an insightful conversation, a sad goodbye as she and her husband planned to run away like naughty children.” Turning to Chloe, Volkova narrowed her eyes. “She mentioned a woman who arranged their passage off-world. She also confessed to her nearly dead father about giving the same woman, information about our organization and even helped her steal the artifact.”

“Are you accusing Wilhelmina of something?” Alia questioned, her nostrils flaring with anger.

“Yes,” came a curt response from the Russian. “Well, not accusation as it is a fact. Wilhelmina Henstridge is fraud pretending to be this businesswoman and she was the woman whom Poorna conspired with and stole the artifact.”

“Oh please,” Alia scoffed. “The artifact isn’t stolen. I checked on it today.”

Natasha ignored the taller woman as all her attention was on Nielsen. “Who are you, Wilhelmina? Are you a con-artist, a thief, an agent of the Syndicate or…Starfleet Intelligence, out to sabotage us?”

Ross shook his head, scoffing. “Come on. I know for a fact, Wilhelmina isn’t part of the Syndicate, who really could give a rat’s ass about you and to be honest, there’s nothing about her that screams Starfleet.” He grinned, glancing briefly at the agent.

Tim suggested, “I think Wilhelmina belongs to the Syndicate. It’s the only theory that makes perfect sense. The Syndicate doesn’t want to sell the weapon to us and sent her to sabotage the deal.”

“It is possible.” Natasha pondered for a moment and then shook her head. “No. I put my credits on this woman being an agent of Starfleet – an organization corrupted by aliens, who somehow discovered our plans for Earth and decided to stop us. So they sent one of their spies, who is standing right here with us.” She gestured at the Canadian woman.

Tim shook his head. “That’s not possible. We’ve been very careful with our plans and are outside the Federation’s jurisdiction. There’s absolutely no way Starfleet found out about us.”

“Oh I agree, me a part of Starfleet is the craziest idea I’ve ever heard.” Chloe nodded, grinning, though deep down the blonde knew she was screwed if other HH members agreed with Natasha’s assertions. Then again, she likely was already screwed anyway.

“Pardon the interruption,” came the voice of a female security officer, who appeared behind Chloe and Minerva. “We have Dr. Fischer’s package waiting outside.”

“Thank you,” Minerva said with a smile. “It was a pleasure doing business with you.” Meeting Chloe’s gaze, which lingered for a moment, the red haired woman turned on her heel and followed the security officer out of the room.

“You know what the real problem is.” Everyone turned their attention to Katie, who was eyeing Volkova with scorn.

“Enlighten us, Katie,” Natasha said, her tone condescending, clearly displaying her disdain for the young woman. Chloe narrowed her eyes, wondering where this was going but she didn’t believe it was going to end well.

“You.” Katie Hamm-Price made a rude gesture with her finger to the older woman. “You husband-stealing, murderous hoe who claims men don’t think with their brains, whenever they meet beautiful women. So I’m confused as to how you managed to make my husband cheat on me.” She briefly shifted her gaze to Tim who wore a stony expression.

Alia chided, “Katie, now’s not the time, not when we have a serious situation here.” But the younger woman paid no heed to her as she continued her tirade. Jimenez was right in Chloe’s view – Katie’s marital woes weren’t exactly relevant to the discussion.

“I’d understand...I mean I’d hate it but I’d understand if Tim went for someone, like say Wilhelmina.” Katie sent Natasha a nasty look, her voice dripping with venom. “I mean Wilhelmina’s like gorgeous and sophisticated but you, Natasha, are a bitter, old hag, who murders her own old husband and steals another’s man.” Volkova was a woman around fifty but she seemed to be aging gracefully with barely a wrinkle and gray hair on her.

Chloe bit her lip, tempted to roll her eyes and briefly glanced at the testing area, where she made eye contact with Poorna, who seemed dejected. The agent wondered, perhaps she could use this distraction to formulate a plan to free her assets, along with getting the weapon out of this wretched place.

Natasha let out a disdainful chuckle, her eyes narrowing to thin slits. “Oh you clueless, stupid girl. Your husband wants a real woman with a mind and one who shares his passion. He only married you for your fertility and you failed in that department.” She sneered as the other woman fumed.

“Alright.” Ross reached out for the weapon. “Since there’s nothing more to discuss, I’ll grab my merchandise and leave.” A tall dark skinned man grabbed his hand, preventing him from even touching the item. “Hey.” The young man’s expression darkened. “What’s the meaning of this? That’s my property.”

“You’re going nowhere, Mr. Ross. If you won’t sell the weapon, then we just have to take it from you by force.” Natasha nodded at the guard, who grabbed both of Kyle’s hands, holding them behind his back. Kyle growled, struggling against the guard’s grip.

So that was HH’s plan along – steal the weapon. Chloe wasn’t surprised as she feared this would happen, the moment they grabbed Kyle from his hotel for an impromptu meeting, intending on taking the key from him and activating the weapon without paying a single credit or latinum slip. Poorna’s visit to her father, going against the agent’s instructions in the exfiltration plan, likely put Chloe’s mission in jeopardy. Mehta’s actions, governed by her emotions, started a chain of events, leading to this very moment in the testing lab, where the mission barely hung by a thread.

“You won’t get away with this,” Ross warned through gritted teeth. “Stealing from the Syndicate will be your death sentence.”

Natasha retorted, haughtiness visible in her voice, “The Syndicate won’t be able to touch us once we’re in Federation space.”

Oh that was where she was wrong. The Orion Syndicate didn’t tolerate theft and had eyes everywhere, even on Earth. Chloe knew from her experience, dealing with their operatives in past missions that the Syndicate was ruthless. HH was playing with fire and didn’t seem to care – well, what one would expect from fanatics, where logic and reason were thrown out the airlock.

Natasha ordered, addressing another guard, a shorter man with East Asian features, “Take the key from him and throw him into the cage with the traitors and the aliens.”

“You’ll pay for this!” Kyle bellowed as the forward forcefield was deactivated and the young man tossed inside. The field was reactivated immediately even as the businessman continued shouting, banging his fist on the forcefield. “You’re making a big mistake, stealing from the Syndicate. You’ll pay!”

The Asian guard, who took the key, grabbed the weapon and turned around, moving past Chloe before leaving the room. The agent raised an eyebrow – something wasn’t right. Why would the guard take the weapon out of the lab, unless the control room was somewhere else in the building?

Volkova turned to Chloe. “Take Ms. Henstridge.”

“Oh you’re going to put me in the cage too,” Chloe remarked, her blue eyes meeting Natasha’s green ones with a cool gaze as two guards flanked her on both sides, their handheld energy weapons aimed at her. One of them, was a tall and stocky Caucasian male with light brown hair and the other a lithe young woman, her dark hair tied in a ponytail.

Natasha gave her a cold smile. “No, I have something special in mind for you.”

“Should I be flattered?” The agent returned the smile as cold as ice. She turned her head to the cage, where Ross began shouting.

“If you hurt her, I swear I’ll kill you with my bare hands.”

The blonde rolled her eyes at his threat. Acting as this overprotective, white knight, while stuck behind a forcefield like a damsel in distress, made a humorous sight if the situation wasn’t so dire. Little did the man know, she could take care of herself and was the one in position to rescue him.

Volkova, it seemed, almost had the same view as she turned to sneer at him. “And how do you propose to do that, especially since you’ll never leave this cage alive.”

“Thank you.” It was Tim and as Chloe turned her attention to him, at first she thought he was speaking over the comms but the man had his back to her, his head bent slightly forward. It was like he was speaking to the air. When he turned around, there was a look of satisfaction in his eyes. “The key has been inserted into the device. So now the weapon’s activated and we’re ready to commence the trial.”

“Good.” Natasha’s smile widened. So now the weapon was online. Well, now was the time to act for the Section 31 agent, giving a quick look around her surroundings.

Tim glanced behind him, conversing with the air again. “Alright, we’re ready. Begin….”

“Wait,” Natasha interrupted, taking a step forward as her eyes shifted to Katie. “Throw Ms. Hamm-Price into the cage.” She addressed one of the guards, standing nearby.

The young woman’s eyes widened, her mouth opening and releasing a scream. “What! No you can’t. I’m part of the board.” The guard grabbed her by the arm and began dragging her towards the testing area. Katie gave her husband a pleading look. “Tim, please…” Tears welled in her eyes. “Stop her, please if there is an ounce of love in you for me.”

“He doesn’t care about you,” Natasha declared, slapping the younger woman across her face. As she continued taunting, Chloe noted the hatred and disdain seeping through the older woman’s voice. “You, stupid, insipid girl. I’ve had enough of your whining. Tim is in love with me and we share a passion that you could only dream of.” Wow, talk about throwing salt on the wound.

Katie tried to push herself forward but the guard held her back. “Tim…please….” But her husband nodded and turned his back to her. She then screamed as the forcefield deactivated and the guard pushed her inside, where she nearly bumped into Ross.

“Forcefield activated,” Tom announced, looking up from his station.

Alia marched towards the dark haired woman, a look of outrage in her eyes. “What the hell, Natasha! Katie’s part of us. Remove her from the cage now!” Her path was blocked when the security chief stepped in front of her.

“You don’t give orders here,” came a cool response from Volkova. “Would you like to join her?” Jimenez growled, moving back a step.

“This is gonna be awesome.” Chloe glanced sideways. Tom wore a feral smile, his eyes sending out a lecherous gaze. The agent’s eyes shifted to the console, knowing the young man was in control of the cage. As she studied the many buttons and controls on the console, Tom continued to boast, much to her annoyance. “Total bloodbath and lots of dead aliens. Woohoo!”

Dead aliens. Chloe raised an eyebrow, her eyes moving around the room. More like dead humans as the non-humans outnumbered them, if she didn’t act fast. Then the security personnel as well as all board members except Natasha and Tim, pulled out weapons of all kinds – handheld disrupters, rifles, long and short blades. There were an assortment of energy weapons, generally used by Klingons, Cardassians, Romulans, Breen and other races. It seemed HH dabbled in the black market to purchase their weapons.

Chloe was puzzled at the presence of weapons in the room. One of them even carried a machete. The non-human captives were held behind forcefields so the display of force was an overkill, not to mention unnecessary and then her eyes widened in realization. Her thoughts were interrupted by Tom’s loud, irritating voice, sounding almost like squeals to her ears.

“Hey, Wilhelmina, once we take back Earth, then no more putting up with political correctness and forced diversity crap in my favourite holo-programs. Maybe I can still get the chance to dump that alien female in favour of a human male as the lead for Federation Space Warriors as it should always be.” Chloe rolled her eyes – that guy sure did spend too much time in the holodeck. It wouldn’t hurt if he spent some time outdoors and not obsess over stupid holo-programs, created for immature little boys in adult bodies - he was in his early thirties. Chloe narrowed her eyes as they shifted down to his console, thinking of ways to get rid of those two guards and Tom out of the way for her to take control, in order to free everyone from the cage.

Of course the idiot hadn’t finished his bragging. “You know, Wilhelmina.” Tom pointed at the cage. “See those skanky alien women there.” Nielsen’s eyes darted to the far corner of the testing area, where three Orion females huddled together - all of them dancers, judging from their skimpy outfits and their voluptuous figures. “I get to act out a scene from a program I wrote, where I’m the hero, fighting against this disgusting alien and those three alien bitches are his minions, though these ones seem a little too over-dressed.” Chloe sent him an icy stare. “I’m so gonna enjoy torturing and killing them. Oh and once I’m finished with them.” He sported a twisted smile, gazing at the blonde. “I’ll have some fun with you and by the end of the night, I’ll have you down on your knees, begging for mercy.”

In your dreams, Chloe thought with contempt, finding his declaration ridiculous. Peeping Tom could try but he’d be in for a rude awakening. Her attention turned to the front, when Natasha’s voice echoed off the walls in the room.

“Commence trial.” Then she and Tim just vanished. Chloe pressed her lips together, forming a thin line as her narrowed gaze fixed on the area, where the two stood just a moment ago. Natasha and Tim were holograms and were really at another location. The situation just worsened. However, the other board members still remained. Chloe then shifted her attention to the cage and noticed the slow, change in behaviour in the non-humans. The weapon was online and sending out the signal, containing the subliminal message, ‘Humans are the scourge of the universe. They must be eliminated or you will die’.

Her gaze moved downwards, followed by the blonde almost bending forward, when the male guard grabbed her arm. Nielsen sighed, glancing at him. “I’m just trying to adjust my dress. It’s getting itchy and need to fix it. So, can I?”

The female nodded. “Sure.” The male released his grip and let the agent bend forward, her hands extending down. Slipping her fingers through the slit, Chloe, in a sudden move, pulled out a monofilament blade, disguised as a bird-shaped hairpin from the strap, hidden from view by a holo-emitter. She swung her arm behind, slicing the male guard’s throat with the blade, the latter collapsing to the floor. Swiveling over her heel at lightning speed, she did the same to the female guard, forcing her to spread her arms and crash onto a nearby console behind Tom, who stared at the agent, wide-eyed, mouth hanging open.

Grabbing the weapon, a Ferengi handheld phaser from the fallen female officer with her left hand, Nielsen pointed at the remaining HH members in the room, who raised their own weapons. When they fired shots, she pulled the fallen guard off the console with the other hand and tossed the body behind to shield her from the beams before rushing to Tom’s side. Chloe wrapped her left arm around his neck, while holding the weapon with her right one, beside his temple, her finger hovering over the trigger. She noticed the security officers held back, their weapons still raised.

Tom whined, reaching for her arm. “This didn’t happen in my fantasy…” He gasped, when Chloe pushed her arm against his throat. The agent could hear the man breathing rapidly and his heart beating loudly against his chest.

“This is real life.” Chloe’s voice was harsh. “Now, show me the controls to deactivate the forcefields.”

Tom replied under gritted teeth, “I don’t answer to you….” He was silenced, when she pressed the tip of the phaser against his skin.

“Unless you want me to blow a hole in your head, frying your brains, then you will direct me to the controls.”

Tom, his body shaking, raised his hand, pointing at the far left corner. “There,” came a squeak.

The agent removed her arm from around his neck and withdrew her weapon. She then shoved him away from her with so much force that he collapsed over a neighbouring console, barely hanging onto it. She briefly looked up at the cage and stiffened. The non-humans were only a few feet from the humans, completely animal-like in their behaviour. As her left hand hovered over the console, Jimenez called out, the latter pointing a Cardassian disrupter at the agent.

“Wilhelmina, you realize opening the door will release the aliens.” Nielsen tilted her head sideways, noticing the black woman and the others had aimed their weapons at her. “If you do that, then we’ll all die.”

Chloe’s response was cold and detached, noticing the non-humans were inches from the humans and Kyle raised his fists, preparing to fend them off. “I know. That’s the whole point after all the signal’s broadcasted over this entire room and you have your weapons ready to slaughter the non-humans once they have killed the human prisoners.” When all the HH members had pulled out their weapons earlier, the agent immediately deduced that the group engaged in hunting and killing non-humans for sport. “I’m just having them released earlier than scheduled.” She then promptly tapped the console, deactivating all three forcefields at once.

Alia shrieked, “No!”


NRPG: More to come ;)

Ranjani S.
Writing for

Chloe Nielsen
Section 31 Agent


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