Two Years Earlier:
I had just received a note from my daughter telling me that she never wanted to see me again. How cliche was that? Turns out she meant it because her boyfriend came and grabbed her essentials and they disappeared together. For all I know, they were on their way to Fiji for a nice weekend.
I suppose I chose not to care to keep myself from caring too much and shutting down into a depressed wreck. So, I focused on my cases.
I was a recently promoted detective of the London, Chelsea, Police Force. A man named Eboue (eb-o-way) had worked his way up to the top of an Italian family. His last signature at his most recent murder said, "The Dawn of Don Eboue." Classy, I'll give him that.
Unbenounced to me, the case was about to get explosive. Reporters, camera crews, famous victims; the whole sha-bang. I was on the clock and didn't know what I was looking for.
The next morning, I received a text message on my "mob" phone: " Vans will be around to your places at times previously discussed." That means be ready by 11 p.m. or you're out of the deal. "We will be going to Cambridge for several days, bring necessities only."
Then another came through. "This is big, boys. The boss is ready to send a message."
I passed it along to my superiors. They told me to proceed. This is the exact reason I went undercover in the first place.
At 10:54 p.m. a large white 12 passenger van pulled in front of my home and gave three short bursts of the horn. How did Sergai put it, "The Hurry the Hell Up Anthem," In his deep, Russian voice. Naturally he was behind the wheel.
"Brothers!" I said with a big smile on my face. As the door slid open, the passengers were illuminated by the street lamps. With a chorus of comrades, brother, welcome welcome, and a kiss from one over zealous french woman, I climbed in the van.
"Oh Sergai was I the last again?" I bellowed in mock displeasantry.
"No my friend! We pick up the boss next. He's waiting at Heathrow!" Sergai was ecstatic to finally see the boss back in England. We had all been 'planted' here as silent terrorist cells until we would be called upon.
"He risked flying to the busiest airport in England?" This actually did shock me. Chuckles echoed around me. Was I out of the loop?
The french girl, Rosalin spoke up, "How did you put it Sergai?" The whole car spoke at once this time.
"OUR BOSS HAS HIS METHODS!" Apparently the chuckles were because it had all become a sort of an inside joke by the time I arrived. I joined in with the laughing. The large German man behind me shook my seat as his chest heaved under the massive effort of laughing in such a large frame.
"Bjorn! How are you my fine weinerschnitzel, you?" I said. Bjorn was one of those men you actually liked on first meeting. Underneath his heavy mustache was a constant smile. I'm not sure what made him join up with this terrorist group, but there must have been something. A kind hearted man generally doesn't go looking for blood without provocation.
"I am good my friend and am getting very excited to see our boss tonight!" He clasped my shoulders and gave them a rub. I was happy it was dark in here because I winced and groaned under his heavy hands.
After the laughter faded and silence fell, the ride got quite serious. The air felt heavier, or maybe it was my breathing. As much as I had met the boss, I still got nervous each time. You don't become the Don of an international terrorist organization without being smart. And you don't remain the Don if you're not intimidating. The Boss was both those things.
The city lights gave a ghostly white hue to the night sky. We were getting closer to Heathrow.
In the distance, the blaring sirens of police could be heard over the radio.
An Italian woman in the back spoke up, "Sergai could you turn up the radio? I love this song."
Sergai's thin hands turned the knob. A chorus of "We're not gonna take it!" blasted over the stereo. I couldn't help but chuckle to myself. Isabella's accent did not match the Americans singing. In fact, I was ninety-five percent sure she was tone deaf.
"A brand new update on the story at Heathrow: A terrorist team has hostages in the B wing of International flights. No one knows who they are or how they took hold of the airport. The leader was overheard by an escaped victim to have had help from security forces inside when they landed. We will let you know more as the situation develops."
"What is going on?" Franck shouted, another German we had among us.
"I'm not sure. It has to be us hasn't it? I mean another terrorist organization wouldn't be here at the same time could they?" Sergai said.
My phone began to ring. "Everyone SHUSH! It's him. . .Hello?" I answered, admittedly a little nervous.
"Hello brother, Allez!"
"Challini, is everything alright?" I was frantic. This was what I was to be preventing, not aiding.
"Everything is just fine. Going to plan actually. Put me on speaker please and tell Sergai to shut off the radio. I trust you heard about our little scheme?" He sounded very calm.
"Yes, we all did. Here is everyone else now." I held up the phone for everyone to hear.
"Good news everyone, I have had help from the British Police to make our first act of terror, a massive one." Sergai gave some sort of grunt that resembled a war cry. "I will destroy Heathrow tonight, for good. There is a nuclear bomb at the top of the Radio Control Tower. It is not a massive one but it will do the job. Pull off the road at mile marker 6.5 and cut the fence and come into hanger bay 4. That's where we are waiting for you. . . how copy Sergai?"
"I copy!" Sergai shouted from the drivers seat.
"Take me off speaker now, Allezander. I want to have a word with you." I was surprised, but complied.
"Yes, Challini?" I had no idea why he would want to talk to me. I was on the low end of the totem pole.
"You heard me say, I had help from local police didn't you?"
"Yes, sir but. . ." He cut me off.
"That was a lie."
"I have a friend in Hamburg who called me last night. Do you know what he told me?" Challini's voice stayed level and calm.
"No, sir I don't."
"Put me on speaker." Again, I complied.
"Everyone listen up. Our comrade we met in Hamburg, Allezander is in fact Matthew Harris, a british undercover detective in our midst."
The car went silent.
There was nothing I could say. He was right.
"Mr. Harris, we have victims here. I wouldn't run if you care about them at all."
Bjorn put his hands on my soldiers. Shivers went down my spine. This time there was no smile under his mustache.
"I'll see you soon, Mr. Harris." He hung up. The phone began to beep. And the car drove ever closer to my death.