The Sequels to Syrrah's Game SGSequels




CHAPTER 21

 

OCTOBER 7TH, 1259 HOURS (1159 HOURS MOUNTAIN TIME)

 

“Explain to me what happened to you the last time,” General Tauring said, increasing his pace down the Eastern hallway towards the commons area. The five other hull people, guided by Eiken and C’est, were already making their way down those few steps from the entrance platform.

“Besides not sensing the kid’s presence, or any of his thoughts, I felt a negative energy,” Hakan said. “It is complicated to explain exactly, but felt like a weight upon my abilities, crushing them. An immovable force, of the likes I have never experienced before. Source unknown. But very powerful.”

“You found a way to overcome this?” Jennings and Nylander followed Lang and Evan as they maneuvered around the sofa couches and walked up to the other hull people. The pleasantries were beginning. Hopefully this would calm the Turrones, making them more cooperative.

“Possibly.”

Stevens and Ko stood near the outskirts of all the greeting activity. Indalo had just arrived and they were speaking with him. “Then start establishing a connection with them now.”

“I’m already on it, General.”

General Tauring slowed his pace. They needed to observe for a moment and allow Hakan to get this done. He stopped just before the steps leading down into the commons area. Hakan did the same. Silently, nonchalantly they observed. All the creepy little zipping-fast hull people were now congregating, like a group of hyperactive first graders in transparent protection suits, in front of the TV’s backside. How glorious.

Remembering the list, General Tauring began picking them out. Akina Senmatsu, age fifty-one. He settled his gaze on a Japanese woman with long, straight, dark hair, ageless face, and a thin build. It was obvious she had been heading for work, still wearing a black dress and dark red sweater. Kyleigh Behrend, twenty-nine. Of course, there she was – the attractive, slim Melbourne bus driver with shoulder-length sandy blond hair and yet in her blue bus uniform. And then there was Robert Munz, thirty-four. Of the three new male arrivals, Robert had to be the shorter one, around five feet nine inches tall originally, with plenty of thick brown hair, and a fit shape. Height obviously didn’t deter this Melbourne resident from acquiring his wealth, the rich financial bastard. Standing next to Munz had to be the pediatrician. “Dr. Nahas Tjirange, forty-two, originally from Namibia, but now practicing pediatric medicine in Accra, Ghana.”

Hakan gave an irritated glance.

“Sorry. Don’t know why I said that out loud.” Tjirange, a tall African man, stood about Lang’s height. Tjirange was a bit overweight and appeared out of place and a tad disoriented. And he’s a doctor? He should be accustomed to anything unusual tossed his way. At least he had the sense to dress properly for Accra’s tropical weather; he was clad in a whitish-tan, short sleeve shirt and khaki, loose pants.

And last but not least on that list was the tallest. Alan Scharf-Dauber, twenty-three. He hovered over Lang and Tjirange by a few inches, with his original height of six feet three inches. A college student, with a pudgy beer belly. Needs to quit the drinking. “But won’t be drinking anything now, pudgy boy.” And no need to worry about pudgy boy hearing it – the hull people’s zippy-fast gathering was about seventy feet away.

 “Ahhhh!” Hakan yelled, grabbing his head with both hands. “Something’s wrong!” He nearly growled his words like a wounded bear.

“What happened? Are you all right?”

Hakan bowed over, crouching toward the floor, yet holding his head. And he didn’t answer.

General Tauring twisted around and searched for the usual break time chair nearby. He saw it. “Come over here.” He grabbed Hakan’s bulky upper arm. “Before you fall down.”

His large frame heaving big breaths in and out, Hakan hobbled himself over to the chair and slumped into it. “I can’t do it. There’s just…there’s just nothing to connect to. Can’t establish a connection.” He looked up. General Tauring eyed him closely; the Indian’s face was warped in pain. “But I did pick something up.”

“Good. What?”

Hakan squinted. He clenched his teeth. “No. This can’t be. Something’s very wrong.”

“But what did you pick up?” General Tauring glanced around. The hull people and officers were still caught up in their greetings. Not one was looking at Hakan in their group. However two DFRs were slowly approaching. He motioned for them to stand down, that all was fine. Hakan was obviously making a scene here. “Try to remain calm, and quiet. You’ll be all right.”

“I think my ability has been destroyed.”

Frustration and annoyance began festering within General Tauring. “Don’t worry. We’ll get help for you. But what did you find out?”

“A professor friend of Colonel Stevens, named Dr. Tom Maplen. He will know what is happening with the hull. You must bring him here, immediately.”

“Okay.” A burst of energy surged through General Tauring. He yanked his cell phone out of his pocket. “You wait here.” Why couldn’t Hakan have mentioned this right away? Stupid Indian.

After rushing down the stairs, he walked with a fast pace toward Colonel Stevens. He attempted a calm exterior, though urgency burned within him. He reminded himself to choose his words carefully and to speak rapidly, once near the mob of hull people and their adoring fans. “Hello, everyone. I’m General Tauring, in charge of this facility and your treatment. Glad to meet all of you.”

Speedy words of gratitude and greetings chimed forth from the zippy-fast hull people.

General Tauring motioned for Colonel Stevens to step aside. He did so, after excusing himself.

They both walked back across the commons area, up the few steps, until stopping by Hakan in the chair. “We discovered who he is. His name is Dr. Tom Maplen.”

“Is he all right?” Colonel Stevens asked, staring down at Hakan. His doctor’s mindset obviously prevented his brain from concentrating on the task at hand.

“Yes. Yes. He’ll be fine. Did you hear me, Colonel?”

Stevens focused on General Tauring. He blinked a few times, his face awash in confusion. “I apologize, sir. But do you mean for Indalo’s third image?”

“Yes, precisely, Colonel. We don’t have time to waste here.”

“Sir. Tom’s an astronomy and physics professor, but since becoming a born-again Christian, his religious views have tainted his scientific views. I would not recommend this.”

“Doesn’t matter, Stevens. He is the one. I need his exact location, right now. Eiken and C’est have their hands full here, helping Jennings’s team procure the new hull vehicles.” Lifting his cell phone, General Tauring pressed the icon for the upside base and brought the phone to his ear. He stared at Stevens. “I’ll request our second acquisition team to leave immediately.”

Curious, General Tauring looked down at Hakan again; the Indian appeared even worse off than earlier.