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writing Short Story (for now)


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Had to write this for a class a while ago. I've been wanting to continue it or make improvements to it for a while but I figured I'd just post it just to see what people think of it. It kinda jumps around at the end because there was a page limit and I had a lot to wrap up.




“You think it's him?”

“I sure as hell hope not. I don't wanna have to tell G that one of his ex-partners was probably murdered.”

“Let's just wait for the fingerprint to—” the feminine voice was cut off by a PDA in her pocket beeping. “Speak of the devil,” she muttered, pulling the device from the pocket. The back light of the device illuminated the dark room. “It's him,” she said, holding up the device to her two male partners as the name Gareth Williams blinked across the screen with a picture matching the dead man stuffed in an orange sports bag. “Looks like he's been here about a week.”

“Right,” the first voice said “I'll call and let him know. You two make sure we didn't leave anything behind.” As the woman and the other man pulled out small flashlights and started scanning the floor for anything they might have accidentally left—scuff marks, pieces of hair, or even pocket lint—the third man pulled out his cellphone and dialed a number, waiting for his bosses' voice to appear on the other end of the line.


“Boss, it's Church,” the man on the phone said, “the body is Williams. I'm sorry.” The man on the other end of the line sighed. He stayed quiet for a few seconds, Church could clearly visualize his boss taking off his glasses and rubbing his eyes before speaking again.

“He was a lot like you, Church,” he said “I think you would have liked him.”

“I'm sure I would have.” Church had met Williams only briefly but could tell from that meeting that he was a good agent, highly intelligent and good at improvising.

“He had a similar upbringing to you as well,” G said, “rough childhood, came from a broken family but he picked himself up off the ground and found his way to MI6.” That was almost exactly Church's story but the similarities between him and the dead man didn't really surprise him. After all, this kind of work didn't often attract those who had led “normal” lives. Still, he felt a connection to the dead man. Even if he didn't know Williams that well, it could have just as easily been him or Rachel or John laying in that sports bag and three others would be standing in the apartment. That was the danger that came with the job. It was never a surprise, but always a tragedy. “I'll make the call to tip off the police,” G said, “make sure you get out cleanly.”

“Already taken care of boss.” Church responded. “We'll start work on finding who did this as soon as we get back.”

“Go home.” G ordered. “It's late, get some rest.”

“Are you sure boss? I know you want to find out who did this even more than we do.”

“There's no point in starting something if you're too tired to concentrate. Everything'll still be here tomorrow.”

“Alright. I'll have my phone on if you need anything,” Church said. “Good night, boss.” There was a click as G hung up and the line went dead.


Two Weeks Later


Rachel jolted awake and nearly fell out of her chair as the bing of an email notification on her computer woke her up. Glancing around the partition of her cubicle, she straightened out the thin pair of glasses that were sitting crooked on her face and blew a strand of her shoulder-length, chocolate brown hair out of her field of vision.

“Good morning sunshine.” That time she did fall out of her chair. She glared up at Church who was standing in his cubicle next to hers.

“Do that again and I will kill you,” she threatened as Church grinned in his cubicle. “Where's John?” she asked, noticing the desk across from them was empty.

“I sent him out for coffee,” Church answered. “Did you finally get in touch with the police last night before your nap?” he asked, focusing more on work now instead of teasing her.

“Yeah,” she answered. “They don't want us involved but agreed to send us copies of everything anyways.” She sat down at her chair again and pulled up the files that the police had sent her.

“And?” Church pressed.

“They found some DNA at the scene, still waiting for them to send me an ID.” She pulled up her email and noticed that the one that had woken her up was the fingerprint result. “Never mind, they just sent it,” she said, opening up the email as Church came around into her cubicle and leaned over the desk next to her.

“Damitri Kragovich,” Church read the name out loud. “Immigrated to Britain thirty years ago, and then died of a heart attack six months ago”

“That can't be right,” Rachel said, starring at the screen in confusion. “The police report said it had to have been no more than two weeks old.” They both stared at the computer in silence, trying to come up with a rational explanation of how a dead man's DNA was left at the crime scene. “Maybe we should ask G?” Rachel suggested. “He might know if there was any connection between this guy and Williams.”

“Can't.” Church replied. “He's at the funeral today.”

“Isn't he supposed to have one of us as an escort if he leaves on duty?” Rachel asked.

“I asked him. He just said, “today I am not the manager of a government agency, just an old man saying goodbye to a friend”” Church said, impersonating their boss by exaggerating his raspy voice. He turned around and leaned against the desk, his blue eyes following various people moving around the office; one man who looked like an accountant bring some folders to his desk, another getting up and stepping outside to take a cellphone call, and a mail-room employee laying a thick, white envelope on John's desk. “Dig up everything you can find on this guy,” Church told Rachel. “I'll look into his death.” Church headed back to his own cubicle as Rachel pulled up the search protocol for the MI6 database and typed in the name. Almost immediately, several documents popped up on the screen, each with a label that spelled bad news.

“Church,” she called over her shoulder, her eyes never leaving the screen. Hearing the tone of her voice, Church left what he was doing and looked over the cubicle wall.

“What's wrong?” he asked.

“There was an investigation into this guy.” Rachel responded. “A joint investigation by us and the CIA,” She swallowed before continuing “for bio-terrorism.”

“Who were the agents working the investigation?” Church asked slowly, coming back around to her cubicle. Hitting a few keys, four pictures popped up on the screen, two with the label “CIA” above them and two with “MI6.” The first MI6 picture was of Gareth Williams when he was about twenty years younger. The second was of G.



Reacting instantly, Church shot back into his cubicle and in a fluid, practiced motion, unlocked one of the drawers in his desk and pulled out his weapon, a Beretta 92FS semi-automatic handgun. It wasn't a standard issue weapon, but one he preferred over the Sig P228 that Rachel and John used. Tucking the gun away, he grabbed his keys and sprinted through the office towards the stairs, Rachel only a few paces behind him. Bursting through the door without slowing down, he nearly fell down the first flight of stairs but managed to jump over them and regain his balance at the bottom. Taking the stairs an entire flight at a time, they were at the bottom and outside in a matter of seconds. Rounding a corner into the parking lot, Church nearly ran straight into John and his coffee. They both jumped out of each others way, making John spill most of the hot beverages on his brown overcoat.

“Forget the coffee and follow us!” Church said, pulling John along with him towards the car; a black Jaguar XF. “I'll explain on the way”



As Church concentrated on driving as fast as he could, Rachel explained everything to John.

“I don't suppose either of you thought to grab vests on the way out?” John asked from the backseat. Both Church and Rachel stayed silent. “Did you at least grab my weapon?”

“Sorry” Rachel said, turning around to hand him an earwig that had fortunately been left in the car from a previous case. She reached over and stuck one in Church's ear as he drove before putting the last one in her own ear. Luckily the funeral was being held in the countryside, which meant there was no traffic to hold them up or police to try to pull them over for driving about fifty miles an hour over the limit.

Church slowed down to a moderate speed as they approached to funeral site so they wouldn't draw attention to themselves. Pulling up across the street, the three scanned over the funeral guests, looking for their boss.

“There he is.” Rachel said, pointing towards a tall man whose face was mostly covered by an old, black fedora hat. “I gave him that hat for his birthday last year, I'd recognize it anywhere.” Sharing a momentary sigh of relief, John and Rachel opened their doors to go get G, just as the funeral started to come to a close.

“Hold up.” Church said, making John and Rachel pause in the middle of getting out of the car and look over at him. “He look familiar to you, Rachel?” Church asked, pointing towards a man standing in front of a grave facing the funeral party.

“That's Demitri!” Rachel said “the dead man!”

“John, take G to his car and get him back to MI6.” Church ordered “once you're clear, Rachel and I'll take Demitri.” John slid out of the car and jogged across the street towards where G was. He whispered something in G's ear and they both changed direction and moved into the small crowd of departing funeral guests.

“I hate to admit it, but John is actually pretty good at blending in” Church said. When John and G emerged from the crowd and casually headed towards G's old Ford Thunderbird, they looked almost like two completely different people. Using the cover of the crowd, G had lost his hat and gained a brown overcoat, courtesy of John. John, on the other hand, was now wearing a t-shirt under an unbuttoned dress shirt and had messed up his usually neat brown hair. Going in, they looked like they could have been business partners. Coming out, they looked like a man and his undisciplined, teenage son.

“You know you still have an earwig in, right?” John's voice appeared over the small radios.

“He's on his cellphone.” Rachel, who had been keeping an eye on Demitri, said.

“Just give John a few more seconds.” Church said, watching John and G as they climbed into the old car. There was a sudden screeching of tires as a white van pulled up in front of Church and Rachel and quickly came to a stop. The back doors flew open just as Church grabbed Rachel and pulled her down. Bullets riddled the front of the car, destroying the engine block and shattering the windshield. As the glass rained down on them, Church threw open his door and jumped out of the car, Rachel doing the same on the other side. Using their doors as cover, they both squeezed off two shots as the man in the back of the van slammed the doors shut.

“What the hell is going on over there!” John's voice on the radio broke the short moment of silence.

“Our car's not going anywhere, we need you to come pick us up.” Church said “Rachel, move back to the rear of the car.” Moving slowly together, Church and Rachel moved back to behind the car, keeping their weapons trained on the van. Just as they took cover behind the car, the driver and passenger doors of the van were thrown open and two men jumped out, firing wildly in Rachel and Church's direction with their weapons.

“Uh, Pickup might be a problem,” John said as Church and Rachel fired back at the two men and forced them to take cover behind their own vehicle. “G's car can't exactly fit more than two people.”

“Well then open the damn trunk!” Church responded.

“Right, I'm coming in now, keep us covered,” John said. Church and Rachel both quickly popped up and fired well placed shots that kept the enemies full attention on them as John sped past the van and skidded to a stop on the side of the road behind Church and Rachel. Still firing evenly timed shots and keeping the men pinned, Church and Rachel moved quickly back towards the car, Rachel turning around and jumping into the trunk first and Church jumping in right after her and slamming the door shut to give them more cover. The tires screeched as John floored the pedal and took off.

After making sure they hadn’t been followed, John pulled into the fenced in parking area of the MI6 building. After the trunk was finally opened again, Church climbed out and, without missing a beat, headed towards the entrance. Looking a little flustered, Rachel climbed out of the trunk as John walked up next to her and G walked past her to follow Church inside.

“You two have fun back there?” John asked.

“I've already threatened to kill Church today, don't make me threaten you too,” she said.


“That was the most intense five minutes of my life,” John said, sinking down into the chair behind his desk.

“I'm just glad we're all ok,” Rachel said, sinking down into her own chair.

“It's not over yet,” Church said, opening his desk and putting his weapon away. “We still need to figure out exactly what we're up against.” Still, everyone was safe so he allowed himself and his team and small moment of relaxation. Rachel stretched in her chair and yawned, the adrenaline starting to wear off. John picked the envelope up off his desk and reached into his desk drawer for a letter opener. “I suppose we can relax for a momen-” he stopped as out of the corner of his eye he caught a puff of white powder fly out of the letter and right into John's face. With his eyes squeezed shut, John instinctively held his breath and slowly put the envelope down so no more of the powder came out. Climbing up onto his desk, Church cupped his hands around his mouth and shouted over the noise of the office “I need everyone's attention, please” he shouted. The noise quickly silenced and he removed his hands and lowered his voice in an attempt to keep everyone calm. “An envelope containing a fine white powder was just opened,” he explained as Rachel started making a call from her phone. “I need everyone to evacuate this building immediately.” There was some talking going on as people quickly left their places and moved towards the stairs but luckily no one started to panic. Climbing down from his desk, Church turned towards John. “You know what to do?”

“Yeah.” John quietly responded. “Wash everything off as best I can until the hazmat gets here, then I get sent straight to a quarantine room in the hospital.”

“Everything will be ok.” Church promised him. “You'll be in good hands.”

“Hazmat's on its way. We need to leave,” Rachel said, hanging up the phone in her cubicle.

“We'll come to the hospital as soon as we can.” Church said. “No matter what it is, you do not have permission to get sick. Understand?”

John nodded, “Understood.”


The Next Day

“You know there's no way you can do this as the manager of part of a federal agency,” Church said, walking into G's office and closing the door behind him.

“I know.” G said, “Which is why I'm resigning. Effective immediately.”

“And there's nothing I can do to stop you?” Church asked. G shook his head.

“He's already made one attack. The next one could be on someone who's not vaccinated like John was.” G said. “I will not let the children of England die if I can do something about it.”

“There's no guarantee that there won't be another attack even if you go with him,” Church said.

“But there is a guarantee that there will be an attack if I don't.” G replied “You've seen the proof yourself.” Church nearly shuddered at the thought of what might happen if something went wrong tomorrow. “Everything will go smoothly. He will get me, and MI6 will get the location the anthrax bomb somewhere in London.” He handed Church a piece of paper.

“What's this?” Church asked.

“My last orders as manager.” G said “You and Rachel will not be attending the exchange tomorrow. I'm sorry, but I can't afford to take any chances.” There was a long moment of silence as Church read over the orders he had been handed.

“You don't trust us?” he finally asked.

“I know you.” G said “I know that it's hard for you to let someone go. Both you and Rachel.”

“You're not just 'someone' to us.” Church responded, reaching behind him for the thing that he and Rachel had gone back to the graveyard for earlier; the hat that G had been forced to leave behind at the funeral. He tossed the hat on G's desk and stood up. “You're family.” he said, turning around and walking out the door.

Church quietly closed the door and let out a breath, leaning back against the door’s wooden frame.

“Did he take it?” Rachel, who had been waiting outside the door for him asked.

“We'll find out tomorrow.” Church said, putting his hand on her shoulder. “Go get some sleep.” He said, “tomorrow's going to be a long day.”


The Next Day

Church and Rachel stood in front of Church's computer, watching the small blip on the screen that represented G, or more specifically, that GPS transmitter that they put into his hat after they retrieved it from the graveyard.

“The exchange must be done.” Church said, noticing the blip slowly moving away from where the exchange had taken place. “Everything's in the car?” he asked.

Rachel nodded. “vests, ammo clips. Everything we need for a rescue mission.”

“Let's go then.” Church said, pulling his gun out of his desk and heading for the stairs. Using Rachel's PDA to track G, they stopped and parked just around the corner from where the GPS placed G, waiting for the all clear from the bomb squad before they moved in. After what seemed like hours or adjusting their bulletproof vests, checking and re-checking their weapons, and making sure their earwigs worked, Church's cellphone finally rang. He flipped it open then shut it again after only a few second. “We're clear.”

Following the GPS, they found themselves at St. Anthony’s Cathedral, closed down and abandoned since a fire had rendered it unsafe three years ago. Moving quietly, they pulled out their guns and moved towards the front door, quietly opening it and moving inside. Pulling a small flashlight out of his vest, Church turned it on and held it next to his gun, quietly moving forward and shining the light in as many of the dark corners that he could find. There was a sudden gunshot and Rachel cried out in pain and was thrown back onto the floor. Shutting off the flashlight, Church quickly ducked down and dragged Rachel into cover behind some pews.

“How bad is it?” he asked.

“Vest took the hit.” Rachel said, “I think it dislocated my shoulder, I can't move my right arm. Gimmie a sec to-”

“Stay here.” Church said, “I'll take care of him.” Before Rachel could respond, Church had taken off towards where the gunshot had come from. Moving out into a dark hallway, Church turned his flashlight on again and quietly moved forward, swiveling his weapon and light towards every possible hiding place.

“Hands up.” A deep voice said from behind him. Church froze as the cold metal of a gun barrel was pressed briefly against the back of his head before it was removed and the person took a few steps back. Knowing he had no choice, Church slowly raised his hands. “Put the weapon down and kick it towards me.” The order was barked with a Russian accent. Church complied and turned around to face the man holding him at gunpoint.

“How did you manage to fake your own death?” Church asked Demitri.

“I didn't.” the man responded.

“Then who are you?” Church asked.

“Nicoli Kragovich.” Church suddenly realized how a dead man's DNA had turned up at a crime scene.

“Demitri's twin brother?” Church asked.

“Yes. I am here to take revenge for my brother's murder” Nicoli said.

“You're brother died of a heart-” Church started

“Lies!” Nicoli shouted. There was a gunshot and pain erupted in Church's right leg. Unable to support himself, he collapsed on the floor, clutching his leg where warm blood was already pooling around his fingers. “I know how you 'intelligence agencies' work!” Nicoli continued “you kill and then cover it up, blaming a heart attack or a car accident!” He took a few steps towards Church. “You may not be on my list, but you will die all the same.” There was another gunshot and warm blood spattered all over Church's body, then a thump as Nicoli's body fell to the floor. A light was shinned in Church's face. Warm hands grabbed his injured leg and cloth was wrapped tightly around the wound.

“You really should have waited for me.” Rachel's voice broke through the silence as she grabbed his arms and helped pull him to his feet. Putting his arm around her shoulders, she helped him keep his balance as they slowly hobbled deeper into the church, still determined to find G. Reaching the boiler room, they slowly opened the door, fearful of what they might find. Shinning her light around the room, Rachel suddenly froze on the spot. Feeling his partner’s hesitation, Church followed the light beam to the corner of the room where an old, black hat lay in a pool of blood.


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