A “Captain Scarlet” story for Halloween
By Devon Ricks and Valuth
The van turned onto the private drive of the once predominant English royal residence, now the Botswanan Embassy, and approached the walls to stop at the sentry’s gate. One of the guards there demanded and received documents showing cause that the vehicle should be there in the first place. The guard scanned the documents quickly, examining picture identification of each man. He looked through the driver’s window and saw cartons and boxes in the rear, the papers informing him that they were there in part for the embassy function that night. The men, caterers, sat calmly, waiting for the word that they could pass through. They submitted to the search for weapons passively, having gone through this many times before with other Embassies. The guard nodded and returned the papers, a hand motion to his companion an indication that they were clear to pass through.
The van entered and drove to the entrance the guard had told the driver it was to go. As the driver stopped, the man in the passenger seat got out, and opened the side door of the van. In the rear there were six more men, crouched waiting. They clambered out, and each man retrieved a box to carry inside the embassy. A second guard was waiting inside the door, and after a brief discourse, they were again passed by. The men this time headed into the kitchen and stacked their boxes while several removed light jackets. They then began to prepare for the evening.
“Mr. Ambassador, I’ve just heard, the caterers have arrived,” stated the swarthy assistant. The Ambassador looked up at him from behind his desk and smiled slightly.
“Excellent. I want this party to come off without a hitch tonight, Mathew. We both know how important it is,” said Kyle Mobutu, the present Ambassador to Botswana.
Mathew Ungabi nodded and smiled. He knew very well the importance of this function.
At that moment, a small, dark haired firebrand came into his office and stood looking at Kyle, her eyes wide in panic.
“Well?” she demanded.
Mobutu stood and came around from behind his desk to look at his daughter. He knelt in front of her and smiled. “They just arrived, sweetling. Everything is right on time,” he chuckled.
“Oh GOOD!” she sighed then looked at her watch.” I’ve got to get ready!” she yelped and tore out of the room.
Mobutu and Ungabi both laughed as she ran out of the room.
“You’d think the world was coming to an end with the way she’s behaving,” Ungabi remarked.
“Oh, for her it must be. Remember this is her first Halloween party here and she wants to make a profound impact on her school mates,” Mobutu replied, the smile on his face broad.
“You don’t think it has anything to do with that young man she’s met at school, Ambassador Daniels’ son, do you?” Ungabi asked.
Mobutu looked thoughtful for a moment and then smiled again. ”Maybe. She is a teenager after all.”
“You don’t know how glad I’ve been that you had the children and I stayed single. I’ve loved her as my own, Kyle, but she is just so…”said Mathew. He made a frustrated gesture with his hands, then both men laughed.
Ungabi laughed at his friend. Mathew was the quintessential bachelor. It was true as well. He and Bekka got along wonderfully together, Bekka listening to Mathew, if he himself were unavailable. She even looked a bit like Mathew, but then when Kyle had married Marrisa, Mathew had warned his new brother-in-law that he and his sister were exceedingly close. Bekka, at her birth, had been a little gift to both men.
They both laughed and got back to business. Both men were certain that all would go off that evening without a hitch.
At Shepard Military Instillation, the three men were settling down for a bit of a breather before preparing to leave the next day. The rigorous SAS training that was now an almost daily part of their regimen for the past two weeks had been wearing, true, but also had built up reserves of strength.
“I don’t think there’s a bone in my body that doesn’t ache,” remarked the youngest of the trio. He raised his head from off of the chair and looked at his companions, before his head fell back to rest on the chair. The other two grinned as the Aussie complained.
“Come on now, it wasn’t that hard, just a bit of climbing,” stated the most senior of them, his American accent rippling with laughter. “You though,” he commented, pointing to the Brit, “ cheated.”
“That’s right. Come on now, ‘old man’. I can’t believe you’re the one complaining. He should be the one in the most pain and he looks fine,” the British member of their party laughed, as he’d pointed to their ‘oldest’ member, causing the man to roll his eyes in humor. “ As to that accusation, I didn’t cheat. I’ve done this all before in case, you have forgotten?”
“How about you help me get him into a shower? I think the warmth might cause his bones to at least act presentable for a while,” the American teased.
“That is a fine idea. Let’s get him,” said the Brit. The two other men stood and approached their Aussie brother, grabbing him, and picked him up. The look of surprise and fear caused the two to laugh once more.
“Hey!” he called out, struggling against them, as they picked him up from the chair.
They carried him into the shower of their quarters and the American turned on the water, while the Brit held him there. The Aussie looked at them, water pouring over his head and his clothing, nodding. He spat some water out of his mouth and glared at them, frustrated.
“Just wait. I’ll get the two of you alone and I’ll take my revenge,” he groused. He looked down at his boots, now thankful he was wearing military attire for the duration of his stay. They were ruined.
The Brit chuckled as he and the American went back to their common room. They both fell back into the plush chairs and cast a look into the shower room where the wet slap of clothing was heard, striking the floor of the shower, as the Aussie discarded it. A boot came flying out through the door and landed near them, water dripping off of it. This brought a chuckle from both men.
“At least his aim is getting better,” commented the American, causing the Brit to laugh.
In one of the lesser-used portions of the Embassy, the old man stirred and looked himself over. He had to be dressed properly for tonight. He ran a hand over the tunic. It looked presentable. This would hinge on things working as they should – rituals needed to be followed and strictly adhered to. He knew there would be trouble there this night, and he knew the outcome. Clarence would still do his job.
The base commander approached the visitors’ quarters. He had a dispatch that he alone had to deliver to the three men. Rapping on the door, he was admitted by the American and invited in.
“I think you know how odd this is but your own commander has requested I bring this to you and to apprise you of the situation. I don’t know how word reached him, but it did and he thinks it would be best if you three were included tonight at this function,” he told them.
He gave the dispatch to the senior man and watched as he read it. The man looked at him as he handed it to the Brit, who also quickly read the paper before showing it to the junior member of the party, dressed now but drying his hair as he read over the shoulder of the Brit. Their mood changed and the commander could see them unconsciously preparing for whatever could occur.
“How big of a group is going in?” asked the American.
“Not a large one. The Ambassador’s security people will have their own people there, but we know that some military tactics can be a bit frightening for civilians. Hence a small group of strategically positioned commandos, yourselves included. I’m sure your Colonel wouldn’t have suggested you join this if he didn’t think you could be discreet. He has asked that you report to him after this all goes down though, not to me.”
“Our Colonel knows we can be discreet, sir. Can your men be low key though? I don’t think we need to alert them to our presence, or yours. I only have one concern,” said the Aussie.
“Oh? What is that?” inquired the base commander.
“Is the source this information coming from reliable?”
The Brit and the American nodded in agreement, turning to look at the base commander for his response.
“It would appear so. One of your own men, a Captain Blue, forwarded the information to your base and I received the details here. I’ve had my adjutant dispatched to talk to the Ambassador in person. Apparently, there is a small party there tonight, making it a prime opportunity for the attempt, “ he explained.
The American looked at the other two. ”So much for a quiet night on base.” He turned back to the commander. ”We’ll be right there, if you give us a few moments to prepare.”
The base commander nodded. ”The rest of the squad will go on ahead. They are all dressed in normal uniform since the majority of them will be stationed outside. I don’t feel right about this, though. Normally selected guards are posted to each Embassy. A raw group going in could cause distractions.”
The Brit looked at his host.” Normally that would be true, sir, but it also puts them at a disadvantage as well. They are not familiar with all the personnel there and will not know where a man is, if there is one they have to contact. Are there any inside suspects?”
“Not that I’m aware of. I’ll leave you to prepare. A vehicle will be at my office in ten minutes,” the commander said. He then turned on his heel and left.
The Aussie looked at his companions." I guess this leaves out that side jaunt for now. Beck is going to be heartbroken I couldn't get the chance to come see her and the baby."
"Baby isn't due for a few months more, Steve," said the American.
"Yeah but she’s getting big.. and more lovelier than ever," Steve remarked, getting a dreamy look.
"Just relax. We might still be able to do it before we're recalled to Cloudbase. Steve, just relax. If we have to, we'll sneak you off the ruddy base to see her," groaned the American. "We better get ready."
The three men changed into regular military uniform and were soon at the base Commander’s office. The truck was waiting with its group of soldiers. The commander greeted them.
“We’ve gotten a confirmation. They are getting ready to move,” he told them.
“If it weren’t for the gravity of the situation I’d have suggested police but this kind of thing couldn’t be handled by them properly,” sighed the American.
“Don’t ever let Rick here you say that,” said the Aussie, grinning slightly, as he climbed into the jeep.
“What would he do?” asked the American, grinning back.
“Frankly, I don’t want to get the chance to find out,” complained the Brit, climbing into the jeep with the Aussie.
The American climbed in last. The jeep then departed to head off base.
Looking in the mirror, she spun to watch the costume flow out around her, then smiled. She had found a wonderful outfit just in time. Running a hand over it to smooth invisible wrinkles, she turned in the mirror carefully examining herself. The dress was a ancient thing, of that she was certain when she had snuck into the most deserted part of the embassy and found the old chest and examined its contents, but it fit perfectly. The lavender color and the soft golden shade went well with her skin and she almost purred in delight at its beauty. Stephan Daniels would like this costume, of that she was certain.
Clarence had seen the girl and knew she wore the princess’ old dress. He could agree with her thought that it looked well on her and he smiled. He went past her room and down toward the Ambassadors quarters. No-one was in the hall today, but he knew it would change later. That was fine. Those other servants working throughout the halls and corridors paid no attention to him as he walked past.
Ungabi entered the office and found Mobutu bent over some plans. The latter looked up at his friend’s entrance, a worried look on his face.
“We should call it off,” said Kyle. “I do not like the idea of Bekka’s party being used as cover for an operation.”
“If we give any indication that we know, they will retreat and we won’t be able to capture them. Bekka will forgive us, of that I am certain, but to have these dissidents loose, we cannot allow it,” remarked Mathew.
“I don’t want her hurt though!” Kyle complained.
“She will not be. We have those British troops that will be here. They can keep them safe,” Mathew reminded him.
“I hope so,” Kyle said. ”Show me what you have done then.”
Ungabi came behind the desk and the two men discussed the plans that were already falling into place. They didn’t see Clarence pass through the room but Mobutu did look up after he had left. The room felt a chill to it. He returned to setting up plans for the security for that night.
The Military vehicle reached the Ambassadorial compound and the dozen men were quickly out of the transport and headed into the side entrance. The jeep arrived not long after. The Brit looked at the building, mentally weighed its good points and its bad, having already done several tours in the same kind of mission. This time it would be as if they were a secondary backup unit. They were all ushered into a room and the head of the Ambassador security entered.
“Good evening gentlemen, I’m glad you’re here. A problematic situation has developed for the Embassy. We have it good by authority that the embassy is going to be attacked by some dissidents of our home country. We do not want to create an incident, so we have requested help through channels. After required authorization, you have been sent here to give your assistance. We would like to try and not hurt these men; we believe them to be undisruptive at best, merely misguided in this effort. Granted, we are aware that it can be hard to keep from harming them, but we ask you not to. They will be returned home and shown what the harm here has cost us back home,” explained Ungabi.
“What harm could come of this?” questioned the Aussie, two others in the overall group nodding.
“Our President is on a very shaky seat at present, various groups creating trouble for him, and assorted embassies around the world. Public opinion has it so that if any more of these attacks happen world wide, he could very well be overthrown and the gentleman that could take power has been known as more of a rabble rouser. In asking for high security help of the World President, we’ve learned that our President’s opponent himself could very well be at the bottom of this entire mess. President Muttabi would like to show this man that he means to stop him.”
“Where did the information come from or is that too classified?” asked a soldier in the group. The Brit saw his Captain’s bars and turned back to the man briefing them.
“Spectrum was able to get the information for us. We are not sure how, but they got information that was sorely needed. The group of dissidents will be invading the Embassy tonight in the middle of the Ambassador’s daughter’s Halloween party. Another reason we do not want them to be harmed. Several other guests are family members belonging to other Embassies,” said Ungabi. “We feel that they could be included in the threat.”
“Not asking for much are you?” muttered one of the soldiers
“Gentlemen, I know we are asking a great deal from you. We have little choice though. That is also another reason we requested commandos. You have weapons at your disposal that can bring these men under control without excessive visible violence.”
The Brit thought about what the man was telling them. It would be tricky and he’s been examining the plans so conveniently left out for them to look at, but at the same time, someone else could use them to counter their moves. He turned to his two companions and they spoke together, making plans. The soldiers knew that they would be detailed to the exterior of the building while the three ‘officers’ would remain inside.
They also knew that the three ‘officers’ would take the more serious areas of the fight.
“I do not like this. If there were no kids in the way, I think we could pull it off. They are not going to be as nice if they have weapons and they won’t care who they target, as long as it creates a problem for the Embassy and the Ambassador,” said the American.
“I wish those plans showed the layout of the secret passages in this place,” remarked the Brit.
The other two men looked at him.
“This place is old… okay, but most of the Ambassadorial places had secondary access to most places, exits to get the important people out in case of situations like this. Now if I’m right, it’s even more ancient than these guys know. This place used to be a royal residence and it had to have alternate access in case of trouble,” said the Brit.
“Do you think the Embassy staff know of the alternates?” inquired the Aussie.
“They might. More than likely not, though. Some would have been lost years, even centuries ago,” explained the Brit.
“And we do not have the time to find them,” said the American.
“Granted, we don’t. I just hope that none of these guys did have the time to find any of them either,” commented the Brit.
They were here. Clarence knew they had arrived and he knew time was going to be short for some in the group. He had seen the other main group of men, not detecting the ones he was looking for. He could sense them though.
Other residents of the Embassy, with the exception of the Ambassador, didn’t note the increase of guards, the new men being discreetly placed in positions that afforded the greatest protection should and when the need arose. It wasn’t long before the party for the evening would begin, guests having started to arrive. One of the commandos that had been brought in, looked at one of his fellows and shrugged.
The three ‘officers’ were checking out the main party room and were understandably not impressed. The Brit was shaking his head and looked at their senior man.
“I know,” the Brit commented. “But I don’t like the idea. The building is too wide open even with all the security on it. Bringing these commandos is a stopgap measure. Having us here might make it salvageable.”
“Hence the reasoning behind the Colonel’s decision, I suppose,” said the Aussie.
“We’ll do what we can then,” stated the American.
The affair was getting well under way and the party going smoothly. The meal was in progress, the Botswanan Ambassador’s daughter keeping company with the English Ambassador’s son. From what the trio of ‘ officers’ could determine, the costumes were all posh ones: pirates, knights, one or two caped ‘heroes’. Even the serving staff appeared to be wearing attire in concert with the affair. At some point, Bekka managed to sneak out of the room hauling Stephan with her, leading him onto the balcony. Stephan grinned at Bekka and moved a bit closer to her.
They were stopped dead at the sound of shouting from inside the building. A moment later came a short burst of gunfire.
Stephan looked at her. “Whatever is going on, I don’t believe was supposed to occur?” he asked.
She shook her head. ”No, it wasn’t.”
Those invited in the combined banquet and party room were being held at gunpoint. Several bodies lay on the floor, security men that had been fired upon. Most of the teens were in shock over this as several swarthy-looking men began to look around the room, one becoming quite angry. He snarled something in an unknown language.
One of the trio was plastered against a wall outside the room and frowned. Besides him was the Brit. Both men were listening to the tirade from in the room.
“Christ… Paul, they want the Ambassador’s daughter and she isn’t there!” whispered the Aussie. ”Guys getting a bit uptight over it and he wants her.”
“A bit of news for our side, don’t you think?” questioned the Brit. “Wonder where she is?”
“How old is she?” asked the Aussie.
“Report said 16.”
“Gotta be with a boy someplace then.” The Aussie grinned. “I would be.”
“Yes, Steve. I believe you would be, but not with another boy,” the Brit chuckled. His face went sober.” We better find them before they do.”
The duo slipped away from outside the Room and headed back to where their companion waited for them. They relayed what had taken place and he nodded. They then began a rapid search nearby, hiding from the ‘dissidents’. The trio found the two youngsters on a balcony. The Ambassador’s son shoved Bekka behind him.
“Don’t hurt her,” he stated.
“Relax Mr. Daniels. We are not here to take you or Ms. Mobutu prisoner. We’re here to get you out if we can,” said the American.
“How do we know that you’re not with those terrorists?” asked Stephan.
The three looked at each other and grinned. The American pulled out a slim wallet and flipped it open so Stephan could look at it. The young man’s eyes bugged. The American flipped it closed to the amusement of his companions.
“What about my father?” asked Bekka.
“I’m certain there is someone with him. From some reconnaissance you were a target this time,” said the Brit.
“Why me?” she asked, dismayed.
“To make your father do what they want, Bekka,” Stephan remarked, looking at the three for confirmation. They nodded.
“But papa….” Her voice trailed off.
They heard voices coming toward them.
“Time to go,” whispered the American.
They ducked into a room away from the sound of the voices. They looked around their hiding place.
“Hmm,” said the Aussie. “We are seriously stuck now.”
The American looked back toward the balcony and listened for anyone coming. The Aussie was at the other, main door. He could hear voices as well. The Brit looked at the other two, then shook his head.
“We are in deep Kimshi.”
The Aussie rolled his eyes slightly. They were getting ready to try and subdue whoever would come through any of the door when part of the wall between the Aussie and the Brit opened. An old man dressed in old servants clothing, similar to some of the clothing worn at the party, stepped out and looked at them both. He gestured for them to follow. As they did, two gunmen came around the corner and tried to fire at them, just as the panel shut behind them. The Aussie winced slightly. They headed further into the passage, a lit torch in a sconce waiting. The Brit grabbed it and followed the old man. They were led down several small flights of stairs to a landing. They found themselves in a small cave with a pond that led to the river. Tied up to a pier was a small boat. The old man pointed for them to head out through with the small vessel.
The five climbed into the boat and the Brit and American grabbed at oars and began to move them through the small channel. They moved down a larger channel to the Thames. They found a place, out of view, and tied up the boat, before clambered out of it. They found that more commandos than previously surrounded the Embassy. They stayed back and watched until the dissidents were all rounded up and led out of the building to be taken to jail, and later back home.
The young guests came out of the Embassy later, family having been called to inform them of the events and for someone familiar to come and take them home. Bekka frowned at the fact her party was in shambles and she muttered something in her native tongue, causing the Aussie to snicker. She turned to face him and asked a question, to which he nodded and grinned back. He then made some remark to her and nudged his chin at Stephan Daniels. She nodded, then laughed with him.
“I hate it when he knows languages like that,” muttered the American.
“Wait 'til he swears,” said the Brit. “You don’t know what he’s called you.”
They spotted the Ambassador and he saw them and pointed before hurrying to them. Bekka threw her arms around her father’s neck and hugged him. He pushed her back and looked her over.
“Are you alright, little bird?” he asked.
“I’m fine, Papa. These men and Stephan kept me safe,” she replied. Her father took her in his arms and looked at the men and the boy, nodding silent thanks.
“Stephan?” came a male voice.
The young man turned and saw his father’s head of security. He smiled and placed a hand on Bekka’s shoulder, then he went over to the man.
“I’m fine Martin,” Stephan said at the quizzical look on the man’s face. The man then looked at the trio. “Martin, relax. They’re Spectrum.”
“Oh really?” came a sarcastic remark from Martin. “Who? Or am I allowed to inquire?”
“Not really,” replied the American.
“All right Stephan, lets get you back so your father knows your safe.”
Stephan nodded. “Bekka,” she looked at him. “ It’s been a fun evening. See you at school tomorrow? You know, of course, the security about the place will most likely to up so be ready for it.”
She nodded and smiled. Martin left with Stephan Daniels.
“Mr. Ambassador, you had a quick thinking man that we’d like to thank for helping us. He was able to get us out and keep your daughter safe,” said the Brit.
“What does he look like?”
“Old man, Caucasian. He looked like one of the serving staff for the party,” said the Aussie.
The Ambassador looked at his head of security.
“Come with me. I think I know who you mean,” said Mobutu.
The small group went into the building and he went directly to a picture. “Was this him?”
The three nodded.
“Gentlemen, you were helped by Robert, Duke of Clarence. He’s long been thought of as the guardian of this Embassy. You were helped by a ghost,” said Mobutu.
“A ghost?” the American and the Aussie looked on in disbelief, while the Brit nodded.
“I thought he looked familiar,” he chuckled.” He’s been dead for about 600 years,” he explained to the other two.
“Okay. You, sir, have lost it. A ghost,” said the Aussie cynically.
The Brit turned to the Ambassador. ”How familiar are you with all the tunnels here sir?”
“I’m not, but Mathew spent time looking through them. Why?”
“I think I know how to prove the existence of this ghost to my friend here,” said the Brit. “Come on guys this is England. Ghosts abound here.”
He led them back to the room and Matthew Ungabi moved along the wall and found the catch, opening it and he grabbed a torch that he had brought along. Entering the passage, they found a crumbling torch in a worn sconce.
“Do you remember what direction you went?” asked Ungabi.
“Down,” replied the Brit.
Ungabi flashed the torch onto the stairs and they saw footprints in the dust there. He led them down several levels and into a weed infested cave, a dry pond there, and a decrepit boat still tied to the decaying dock. The Aussie and the American looked around in amazement.
Mathew examined the floor. “Gentlemen, how many footprints do you see?”
They looked to see two pairs of small feet, and three pairs of army boots. The Brit had seen the old man was wearing boot as well, but riding boots, that would have left no serious impression, but they would have left a mark. They headed back upstairs and Mathew brought them out into the main hall.
“I don’t believe that,” complained the Aussie. He winced.
“Well, it happened. Now what happened to you?” asked the Brit.
“Oh they winged me,” remarked the Aussie, glaring at his shoulder.
“Lovely,” groaned the Brit. He glared at the Aussie.” Come on. Lets get you looked after.”
“Okay, where?” asked the Aussie.
“Where do you think? The Colonel will want an update anyway,” commented the American.
The Aussie sighed,” Spectrum HQ.” He shook his head.
“Bang on,” replied the Brit.
"Come on guys, its not that bad," the Aussie protested.
"What are you thinking? They see the injury and you get fixed up and you're back on your way to Cloudbase without seeing Becky?" asked the American.
"Yeah," the Aussie replied.
"Sorry mate, them the rules," stated the Brit. " I don't like it anymore than you do. Look, If we can, we'll sneak you to see her. I know you haven't been able to get together since last month and all. Sometimes, I hate the bloody regulations they made."
"Just be glad Dr Fawn is on Cloudbase and not here,” chuckled the American.
The Aussie looked thoughtful for a moment then nodded. They helped him into the jeep and headed to the large gleaming building in the heart of London. They parked in underground parking after having been cleared through the security there and were escorted to the Infirmary. The young Lieutenant that had escorted them went to report in, so that they could do their debrief while the Aussie was being looked over. Both American and Brit were allowed to stay with their comrade until someone arrived to get their reports. The Aussie was quickly up on the examining table and shirt off to wait for treatment.
“All right Captain, Lets see what you’ve been up to,” came the voice of the doctor as she entered the room. The Brit looked up, startled.
“Shar? When did you get here?” he asked.
“Last week. How about you and your buddy go finish your debriefs whilst I take care of this guy? There are two gents from upstairs ready to have a nice little talk with you two and then they can talk to the Captain here, after,” she remarked. “ Oh… don’t go too far. You two have some unfinished business here.”
“What kind of unfinished business?” inquired the American.
“You’ll see,” she grinned.
The two went to find two of Spectrum Security waiting for them. The more senior of the two looked at them both and nodded.
“Captains,” he remarked in greeting.
“Okay, what are you doing here?” asked the Brit.
“Hey, I was in the neighborhood,” the man remarked looking at him.” The Colonel wants your reports ASAP and I get to take them up when I go.”
“Oh now that’s sweet,” commented the American. “Can’t wait 'til we get back tomorrow.”
“Afraid not, Captain,” remarked the head of Cloudbase’s security, Terry Metcalfe. “Sooner we get started, the sooner you’re done.”
The four men left the Infirmary and went to nearby rooms so they could finish the debriefing. In the Infirmary, the doctor was in the midst of stitching the Aussie up. He winched several times as she inserted the needle and drew it out the other side of the wound. Looking over her glasses, she frowned.
“I thought you said that the local had taken effect,” she commented.
“It did. It’s the sight of it going into me that’s doing this,” he explained.
“Then don’t look.”
“I can’t help it,” he chuckled. “ Morbid curiosity.”
Shar looked the wound over and finished stitching it up cutting the thread neatly. The Aussie winced slightly, and caught her looking at him for a moment.
“Tell me… Captain,” she inquired.” When was the last time you got a tetanus shot?”
The Aussie sat for a moment…” umm.”
“That long ago,” she commented. “ I think I’ll just cover all the bases. If you don’t remember, it’s been too long.”
She left the room and came back after several minutes with a kidney dish, a vial of liquid and a several sterile wrapped syringes. He looked at the needle and blanched slightly as she tore off the wrappings and began to draw a dose.
“Where you going to give it to me?” inquired the Aussie.
She glanced at him as she drew out the dosage.” Stand up and drop 'em please,” she said.
He looked at her startled.
The sound of laughter at the doorway had him turn in surprise. Both the Brit and the American were back and chuckling heartily.
“I wouldn’t laugh, either one of you, “ she remarked. “You two are going to be next.”
They looked at her in surprise.
“Why do we need shots?” asked the American.
“Quite simply Captain…Captains,” the doctor remarked, including the other two,” Dr. Fawn wants to make certain that everyone’s inoculations are up to date. All staff on Cloudbase have been done, or were near to being done. I, and several others get the supreme task of giving those inoculations for Britain.
“You’re joking,” Paul commented.
“No, as a matter of fact, I’m not. Be glad you’re getting them here, now. You get them here you don’t have to worry about them at Cloudbase,” Shar told them.
” Okay Shar. It seems we’re at your mercy.” The Brit remarked.
“Better hers than Fawns?” the American questioned.
The Aussie nodded. ”Better looking too.”
“Flattery doesn’t work Captain,” she remarked, she gave him a look as she checked to make certain there were no air bubbles in the syringe.
Once ready she daubed some cotton and looked at the Aussie. He stood up and turned to drop his pants. She cleaned an area on his buttocks, then turned to inject him. He winced at the sharp, and brief pain and sighed as the needle was removed. He felt the wetness of the cotton once more and stood up, pulling up his fatigue pants. Both the Brit and the American were watching him, grinning. Shar placed the used needle in a separate container after breaking off the tip. She looked at the American.
“You next,” she said,” crooking her finger toward her, and she prepared the second injection.
The American stood up, the Aussie taking his place on the couch, and seating himself gingerly. The American followed suit and was leaning over the table for his injection. Shar proceeded to inject him and he was breathing a slight sigh of relief in the knowledge he wouldn’t have to deal with this later. He felt the second swab of the cotton and he did up his fatigues, nodding his thanks.
“Okay Captain, you’re next,” she smirked. The Aussie and the American watched as he stood up and headed toward her. She opened a package and licked her lips. The needle that she produced was triple the size of the other two.
“What do you think you’re doing with that?” he protested. The other two started laughing. He looked back at them glaring.
“I’m going to give you a tetanus shot,” she grinned.
“With THAT?!” He went pale.
“Yuppers,” she chuckled, both his companions laughing hysterically.” Bend over!” she snapped.
He undid his belt and closed his eyes. He heard the bottle with the serum set down on the glass table and he peeked slightly. The vial was there, and the two used needles were in a proper disposal unit. He felt a sharp prick and jerked.
“Okay,” came a snicker. “ You’re done.”
He stood straight and looked at her. In her hand she was waving a needle the same size as the other two. The others were still laughing.
“Shar… that’s not funny!!” he protested as he did his belt up.
“They think it is,” she grinned looking at the Aussie and American. Behind them was a furiously snickering Dr Fawn.
The Captain sighed unhappily. It was always on or near Halloween that they did something to him. Next year he decided to take holidays then.
The next day, after all the diplomatic wrangling was completed, the Ambassador was talking with his Security chief.
“You know, I should have told them about the curse that goes with Clarence,” said Kyle.
“We don’t know if it’s real, though. It has never been proven,” said Mathew.
“If it is still in effect, I wonder who saw him,” said Kyle.
“Well the Brit did for certain,” said Mathew.
“Then we’ll never know, I suppose. What if the others saw him?”
“Then it would be one for victor, two would be a victim, three would be for vengeance,” said Mathew.
“Hmm,” remarked the Ambassador.
At the military base the three Spectrum Captains were preparing to return to Cloudbase. Each one was putting on their uniform. The Brit pulled on the zip of his tunic.
“Steve, what did you think of the old guy? Could you tell if he was a ghost?” asked Paul Metcalfe, a.k.a Captain Scarlet.
“Nope. He looked real enough to me. I was a bit surprised to see that wall open though. Is that common here?” questioned Steve Blackburn – Captain Brown.
“Quite normal, for England, and old stately homes. Most really old homes have all kinds of secret passages and tunnels in them. What did you think of him?” Paul asked the third member of their group as he pulled on his tunic.
“Looked okay to me, but it is a bit odd seeing that kind of thing,” said Conrad Turner, Captain Black.
“Come on, you should be used to it. You were born here,” chuckled Steve.” The idea of spooks, haunted houses and secret passages, is a rather big deal here isn’t it?”
“I didn’t live here though, remember?” Conrad stated.
“So you missed out on the spooky background,” commented Paul, wiggling his fingers and moving toward Conrad and grinning.
“I was a bit surprised to say the least. I heard Steve’s little gurgle and saw him,” grinned Black
“Scared you did he?” asked Paul.
“People coming out of the wall is odd you know,” Steve chuckled.
“Uh huh,” remarked Conrad dubiously.
Clarence was resting. He felt bad that all three had had to see him. Two had seen him almost the same moment. That could cause some troubles, but one of them would die for certain. Which, he didn’t know. The other, he had no idea what would happen to. It would be left to fate to decide that. The last man, though, he felt the worst for. He would be a traitor to all he believed in and had fought for. Back when he was young, it had amounted to William being torn apart against Edward Plantagenet. He hadn’t enjoyed that. Things were so different now. How could this man become a traitor?
It didn’t matter – the curse was pronounced.
They would go back to what they were doing and sometime within the next year, their lives would fall apart.
Dev and I want to express our gratitude for Chris and Mary having the great idea of creating more of a background for Captain Brown. Of all the Spectrum Captains he's the one that we really need to get to know.
We'd also like to thank Chris for allowing Mr. Conners to join in on the festivities.
2003 Cijay and Dev.