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Wednesday, 5 November 2008

The Rising - Chapter 55: Moved Upstairs

Will Harris took the last gulp of his third cup of coffee of the morning. With no help from any of his so-called colleagues, he was getting nowhere and starting to despair.

The Mantek file system had been completely wiped and it was his job to restore all the files from the offsite backup. This was proving impossible because he would need someone from the offsite storage facility to bring the tapes over to him but no one was answering the phone over there.

Will had tried to escalate the problem to his manager but as usual, he had something better to do. Will knew that as soon as someone important decided this was a big problem, his manager would be interested but until then he was on his own. He had half a mind to get in his car and drive out there himself. After all, it’s just outside the city and he could have been there and back in the time he’d been hanging on the phone.

To hell with it, he thought, No one would thank me for it. Time for another cup of coffee.

Will got out of his seat and as he turned round to leave his cubicle, he was faced with a dark-haired woman in a sharp suit and glasses. She had blanked him for the past two years on the rare occasions they saw each other but now she wanted to talk. It was Jodi Carr, his old boss from upstairs.

‘Will, I need you to come with me,’ she said in the unfriendliest way she could.

‘Hi Jodi, how are you?’ he asked in a mischievously upbeat tone.

‘I need you to come with me, Will. Right now.’

‘I can’t. I’ve got to sort out this file system problem. I reported it to your guys upstairs but I haven’t heard anything back so I guess it’s up to me.’

‘This is related to the file system problem, Will.’

‘Well, there’s no answer at the storage facility. I don’t know how I’m going to restore the files.’

‘You won’t be able to,’ she said, ‘We have a bigger problem that we need your help with.’

A bigger problem that they need my help with? This should be fun…

‘What could you possibly need my help with?’

‘This,’ Jodi said and handed Will a photograph. It was a picture of a female with short dark hair, dressed in black running up a flight of stairs with a gun in her hand.

‘Who’s this?’ Will asked.

‘That is Agent Becky Clarkson. She has reappeared this morning. That picture was taken at the offsite storage facility less than an hour ago. She murdered everyone there. When our people got there, the dead bodies of the men were all neatly piled up and all the tapes were gone.’

Will was stunned. She was back. After two years, he thought he’d never hear anything from her again.

‘You were closer to her than anyone here.’

‘Close to her? I worked with her a few times but I wouldn’t say we were close.’

‘You’re the best shot we’ve got at bringing her in before anyone else gets killed. Pack up your things. You’re being moved upstairs.’

‘What, permanently?’ he asked, with hope in his voice.

Jodi didn’t answer his question. ‘Follow me.’

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