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Chapter 1:
Casey could feel the rest of the class¡¦s excitement building as each second ticked closer. The fan on the roof circulated slowly, lazily, as if it too could not stand the overwhelming heat and humidity. Casey peered outside onto the patchy yellow grass, and wiped her damp brown hair off her sweaty neck. The young teacher at the front was struggling to keep the class¡¦s wandering attention.
"C'mon guys,¡¨ he pleaded, showing perfect, white teeth, ¡§I know you¡¦ve finished your exams, but this is really important. Just because it is the last day of school for you year 10¡¦s, doesn¡¦t mean you can slacken off!¡¨ He looked back to the class, heads on desks, writing letters, giggling and explaining summer plans. ¡§I know,¡¨ he said and grabbed a large red marker. ¡§BAM!¡¨ he yelled slamming his hands on a wooden desk. The class shuddered, girls squealed and people sat bolt upright. He smiled. ¡§That¡¦s all you know in a car crash. It could be the last thing you hear!¡¨ Small beads of sweat trickled down his face, even though the fans were on. ¡§FACTORS OF CAR ACCIDENTS,¡¨ he wrote in bold red letters. The class groaned, sinking back into their seats. ¡§Right guys, this is very important. Some of you will be getting your driving licence over the holidays, and after that, so it is vital you know what causes accidents. We¡¦re going to go around the room and you have to name one factor of car accidents. We¡¦ll start with BJ.¡¨ A squat boy with red hair and an abundance of freckles, opened his mouth.
¡§Beer,¡¨ he pronounced, smiling. Casey rolled her eyes. At least we¡¦re not outside in the blistering sun, she thought to herself, even if this topic is irrelevant to me until next year!
¡§Yes, alcohol,¡¨ said the teacher, scribbling on the white board. ¡§Next.¡¨
¡§Keep going, keep going,¡¨ said the teacher, turning and writing more.
¡§Weather.¡¨ Casey¡¦s head began to decide on her contribution into the lesson.
¡§Car malfunctions.¡¨
¡§Pedestrians.¡¨ The teacher nodded as he wrote each on the whiteboard.
¡§Road Conditions, sir,¡¨
¡§Music.¡¨ She looked around the class. She¡¦d be the last one asked, being in the back corner.
¡§Flashers,¡¨ said Jayden, a dark haired boy in the back row, smiling. His friends around him sniggered. The teacher raised an eyebrow. ¡§You know,¡¨ said the boy, playing cool, ¡§People with torches might flash the light into your eyes.¡¨ His friends laughed louder and Casey sighed.
There¡¦s always one, isn¡¦t there, she thought to herself. Sometimes I feel like I¡¦m the only mature person in the class even though I¡¦m the youngest.
¡§Sure,¡¨ said the teacher. ¡§That¡¦s distractions. Alex?¡¨ asked the teacher, looking at the quiet boy, two seats from Casey¡¦s right. Casey used her peripheral vision and glanced out of the corner of her brown eyes at Alex¡¦s hard, emotionless face.
That¡¦s not a face that belongs to a 16 year old boy. It¡¦s a middle aged business man¡¦s look, she thought as Alex turned his head slightly to look at her. Casey whipped her eyes around to the teacher.
¡§Sabotage,¡¨ she heard his cool, calm voice say. Casey¡¦s jaw loosened, the teacher muffled a chuckle, trying to be diplomatic, and the class burst out in fits of laughter.
¡§Okay, Alex. Yeah, I suppose. But that comes under ¡¥Car Malfunction¡¦,¡¨ said the teacher with a slightly amused look on his face.
¡§No it doesn¡¦t,¡¨ said Alex coolly, ¡§Sabotage is the intentional, malicious degradation of something to impede someone¡¦s wellbeing. Malfunction is the fortuitous unplanned failure of something.¡¨ The teacher looked slightly taken aback and the laughter ceased, leaving only the sound of the cicadas chirping outside. The teacher pulled at his collar. He wrote a neat ¡¥sabotage¡¦ on the board.
¡§Casey?¡¨ he asked, turning to her.
¡§Mobile phones,¡¨ she put simply. The class was still deathly silent.
¡§Perfect! Beautiful!¡¨ he said, scribbling the word on the board. ¡§And relevant!¡¨
Casey sunk into her seat hearing, ¡§Know-it-all,¡¨ ¡§Teachers pet,¡¨ whispered loud enough so she could hear.
¡§That¡¦s enough, copy these down into your books.¡¨ The class groaned and dragged out their classroom apparatus. Casey looked up on the board. The word sabotage seemed to stand out from all the rest.
Well, if there¡¦s someone more mature then me, it would probably be Alex Dawn. Casey could hear a faint whisper, growing louder each time. It was like an echo, building in power. ¡§6¡K¡K.5¡K¡¨ The students looked around at each other. ¡¨...4¡K¡K..3¡K¡¨ By now, the whole class was chanting. ¡§¡K..2¡K¡K1¡K..Ze¡K..¡¨¡¨ BRING!¡¨ rang the school bell, drowning out the cheers of the class. Casey swept her things off her desk and rushed outside.
¡§That¡¦s the last of that for 7 weeks,¡¨ she thought, looking back at the large school ground. ¡§I only have to go on a camp which is like school!¡¨ Streams of students ran out from every door, ones from her year, year 10, screaming, running, dancing. She sighed as she watched boys from her grade run past the crowded students, super soakers drenching screaming girls in tight shirts and short skirts. Casey kept her head down and looked at her aged sneakers. She climbed aboard her bus, flashing her bus pass and finding one of the only seats available, next to a little year 7 boy, throwing spit balls at the driver. Casey rolled her eyes and sat down, as far away from the boy on the seat as physically possible. Where was Willa? Casey turned around to see Willa, sitting next to Dominic, who was surrounded by some of his friends. Casey frowned. She stared at the seat in front of her, wishing time would go faster now. Maybe if I¡¦d told Willa I could be going to a selective school she¡¦d care more. She felt the bus shudder and roll forwards and Casey relaxed a little. Laughter and chatter filled the bus. For the other grades, there was only one week to go, but for hers, it was over for 7 weeks and she would be attending a selective schools camp for the first two, starting tomorrow. Casey heard snippets of other people conversations about holiday activities around her. She closed her eyes and thought about her plans. ¡§I¡¦m going to go home, finish any school work, grab a snack and jump on the net to talk to my friends. Mmmm then have a nice warm bath and fall into a dreamful sleep.¡¨ Casey smiled as the warm summer sun beam onto her face. The bus jolted and Casey was snapped out of daydream, accidentally knocking her bag into the aisle. Casey¡¦s bag spilt open, the contents of her pencil case littering the floor. ¡§Oh no!¡¨ she moaned, getting down on her knees to pick up her belongings. The bus occupants erupted in painful laughter as the bus stopped suddenly and Casey was thrown into somebody¡¦s legs. ¡§Sorry,¡¨ she said, dusting herself off. She looked up to see Alex¡¦s piercing green eyes staring carefully at her and an amused smile on his face. Casey held her breath, bound by his creepiness.
¡§It¡¦s okay,¡¨ he said rather loudly, leaving Casey wishing he was a shyer boy. She smiled jadedly and instantly turned to farewell her Willa, usually sitting next to her on the bus. The year 7 boy was sitting there, his finger up his nose, staring out at the street. Willa was sitting rows back, laughing loudly at something Dom, the boy she was sitting next to, had said. Casey shivered and left the bus, this being her stop. She could still hear the echo of laughter from the bus.
¡§Gosh, he¡¦s strange,¡¨ contemplated Casey, her thoughts back to Alex. ¡§Very distant.¡¨ She remembered the time he had seemed to be following her, her friends, who were taking the last day of school off, had said he must like her. But she refused to believe them. ¡§New student right at the end of year 10, not interested in making friends, intelligent, seems to be hiding something too, weird mind¡K¡K..¡¨ She kicked a rock at her feet. ¡§Oh well!¡¨ Casey walked slowly; there was no rush. Year Ten students got an extra week of holidays a week in which Casey planned to relax and mooch around the house. She walked past neat gardens and tidy houses, watching small birds bath in bird baths, insects fly around flowers and people inside their air conditioned houses. The sun beat down on Casey¡¦s dark brown hair as she dragged herself closer to her home. Minutes later, a familiar patch of green grass amongst the yellow dried gardens of neighbours, came into sight. Honey suckle edged the white picket fence and roses, swarmed by busy bees filled the gardens with paths of white pebbles. ¡§Home,¡¨ thought Casey, walking up the hard concrete path next door to the country delight cottage. Casey pulled the keys from out under a cracked pot with a withered plant inside it. She pushed the key into the keyhole and after a quick glance at the perfect house next door, enviously, she turned the handle and entered her home. She was hit by a wave of heat, even more extreme than outside, a sign her mother and father weren¡¦t home. She smiled as she dumped her bag in the kitchen and took out her lunch box. A note of crisp white card sat on the bench, and in black Spidery lettering it said:

Gone out for the night. Feel free to use the internet.
Don¡¦t forget summer camp tomorrow!

Love always
Mum and Dad

Casey¡¦s smile broadened. No parents. No short, black haired, neat freak, nagging mother, no bumbling, clueless father She dragged her bag upstairs to her little room and set the small amount of homework she¡¦d been given up. ¡§I¡¦ll do this first, and then have a nap so I can stay up late. Or maybe I¡¦ll just have a nap,¡¨ she thought, discarding her books and falling onto her soft bed. Delighted, Casey let the stresses of school and life, leave her head and relaxed into a dreamless sleep.

Casey woke up, half-an-hour later, drenched in her own sweat, the front of her hair plastered over her face.
¡§Yuk, she said, throwing herself under the shower. After she dried herself off, she placed hr towel neatly on the rack and tidied up the sink. She changed into bland clothes, a pair of black jeans and a grey button up shirt. Walking into the study, she flicked the computer switch on, at the same time, dragging the chair over and arranging the keyboard and mouse neatly.
¡§Connect,¡¨ she said, listening to the clicks and pops the modem made, while drying her hair with her towel. She opened her Internet Brower and flicked through her favourite pages. A few computer forums; correcting someone with their terminology and one or two programming tips, a new website offering a free version of their image editor, and her favourite. Casey checked the website of the summer camp she was going to. Its was quite professional. The page outlined what she was going to do, what her mum had already told her.
¡§It¡¦s wonderful! Its a camp for three selective schools. They even have a technology centre Casey.¡¨ Casey had nodded numbly. Casey signed into MSN and took a large spoonful, of her favourite meal, the only meal she could actually cook, pasta sauce and cheese. The webpage had bright pictures of happy-looking girls and boys at a campus. She relaxed into her seat and checked her MSN. The little men were circling each other, logging her in. Casey tapped her foot impatiently.
24 New Emails : popped up a small box in the corner of her screen. Casey clicked it and cycled through her new emails: subscriptions, programming tips, people asking her questions. By now her web pages had loaded. Casey¡¦s keen eyes scanned each page quickly, her finger scrolling down on the mouse wheel. She started reading intently an article on computer graphics. Casey jumped when she heard the familiar chime of MSN.
Neal Micheal is now online
¡§Strange,¡¨ she thought, ¡§Who¡¦s this? I haven¡¦t added anyone new...¡¨ She scoffed another mouthful of pasta. Her cursor hovered over his online name to vet his email address; ¡§How original...¡¨
muttered Casey. A new message window opened.

Neal Michael: Hello Casey Fischer. I have to speak to you.

Casey looked puzzled. ¡§Who is this guy?¡¨ she thought, her fingers typing rapidly.

ƒºCasey Fƒº: Hi¡K¡K¡K¡K..Neal Michael. ƒº How¡¦d you get this address?

Casey sat back in her seat. Neal Michael is typing a message; Read the line under the conversation box. A new message appeared on the screen making Casey frown.

Neal Michael: Miss Fischer, I need to talk to you about you. Not about myself. It is crucial that you trust me. Is that clear?
ƒºCasey Fƒº:?????? Why should I trust you? Some random guy¡¦s got my email address from cyberspace.

The chat session lay stagnant for a few minutes
ļ Casey Fļ: ok ok I trust you. For now...
Neal Michael: I suggest you get pen and paper¡K¡K..

Casey scrambled for her notepad and pen. There was something weird going on. She hovered her cursor over the ¡¥block¡¦ button, which would disallow him access to talk to her. A tingle shot down her spine. ¡§Someone walked over my grave,¡¨ she whispered, ripping off the top pages on the notepad.

Neal Michael: This is a brief. Please leave all questions to the end of the brief. Situation: The local high school has been reported to have suspicious activity over the last 3 months. These meetings have been disregarded until now, when satellites traced a phone call from the school, containing fragments of conversation involving illegal manoeuvres

Casey sat, pen poised, mouth ajar. For a second her brain went completely blank and her eyes were fixed upon the screen. Then she sat up straight, smiling

ƒºCasey Fƒº Ha ha. Like I¡¦d fall for that!!!!!!!!!!!!! What, will this message self destruct in 20 secs? ƒº
Neal Michael: I thought you trusted me? If you are not serious about this your mission will be disbanded.

Casey paused. Mission? Was he still going on about this? ¡§Hmmm, it could be someone from school,¡¨ she thought, ¡§Yeah, probably.¡¨

ƒºCasey Fƒº: Okay, okay. But how can I really believe you? If you are a spy or whatever¡K.
NM: Okay. I am not a spy, I am an Agent. You have a deal. I need one minute.

Casey frowned. This was getting creepy. But she wanted to push it. She finished off the bowl of pasta and took it into the kitchen. She rinsed the bowl and heard a strange sound similar to bell chiming. An error on the computer! She raced back into the study, her socks sliding on the tiled floor. She darted around the hallway and dashed up the stairs. The computer had a window on the screen from her anti-virus program.

19:49 Alert: Remote computer Pers. No.ID tag 000001 has accessed drives A, C, D, E, F and G for 3 sec. Files on the computer may have been corrupted. Click for more details.

¡§Eep!¡¨ squeaked Casey, turning a ghastly shade of white. ¡§A hacker! The first one!¡¨ Her arms started to shake, her fingers gliding over the keys. ¡§Urg! All the firewalls and anti virus programs I have! Something really strong musta got in. Luckily I¡¦m not into anything like hacking or illegal stuff so no crim record. All my work!¡¨ she groaned, holding her head. ¡§A virus could get in! All my stuff, gone.¡¨ Casey ran to the telephone cable on the wall. Small beads of sweat formed on her hairline. The telephone line that connected her and the rest of the world. The computer chimed. Another message from Michael. Casey bit her lip then decided to read what it said. She stubbed her toe in her hurry to sit down.

Neal Michael: Phillip says nice computer. He likes your program for the Bluetooth headset. Got a few bugs tho. I like this picture the best.

Michael¡¦s avatar, the little picture under his name changed to a picture of a little frog Casey had drawn herself. And never shown anyone. She stared at the screen in disbelief. A hacker somehow got her email address and name and now broke in her secure system. And who is Phillip? ¡§That was a fast computer too. How did they see my hidden files? They couldn¡¦t have downloaded my hard drives!¡¨ Thousands of questions raced through Casey¡¦s mind, each with one clear answer. He must be telling the truth.

¡§Or he¡¦s a hacker. But why is he trying to get me to go to school.¡¨

Neal Michael: Enough proof? Or do I need to tell you your computer password, MSN aliases, give you a list of your hidden documents?

Casey felt a twinge of admiration and her heart pounded in her chest as she requested a virus scan.

Neal Michael: Bit late for that now, isn¡¦t it?

Spy ware. He had spy ware! Casey shook her head then added,

ƒºCasey Fƒº: That proves almost nothing. So you¡¦re a spy who can hack. So can HACKERS. But, I believe you. Now what?
Neal Michael: I am not a hacker. Your Mission is to gain access to the school, your school, and be surveillance and record details of conversation and if you can, disarm the enemy.
ƒºCasey Fƒº: Righto¡K..
Neal Michael: You will do this by obtaining an agency radio, you will find in your letterbox. All surveillance must be done manually as we believe the enemy has an electronic device detector, which grows stronger in accuracy with additional electronic devices. Your radio will give them about a 20m radius. Your call sign is Chaser, I am Wolf. If you disarm the adversaries you must call on the radio with the pro-word, Thunder. In which backup will be sent. Any questions?
ƒºCasey Fƒº: Yeah, what if I¡¦m in danger caught or otherwise?
Neal Michael: You are to avoid danger at all cost, even if it means aborting the mission. If, however, you are caught the pro-word is Bruiser. If you want to abort, or I tell you to, the pro-word is Gail. Good Luck.
Neal Michael has left the session
Neal Michael is now offline.

Casey¡¦s hands were shaking and her head was spinning as she wrote down the details. ¡§I¡¦m not going to do this. I have to go a camp tomorrow; I can¡¦t go running round the school at 9 in the night. ¡¨ Another tingle shot down Casey¡¦s spine. She could barely believe what she was doing. She disconnected and grabbed her emergency pack, a little black bag she always had prepared in the case of any urgent situation, like fires or robberies. ¡§This is nuts!¡¨ she thought dragging out her bike from the garden shed. It needed pumping and she smashed the guard in her haste, but there was no time for that now. She stopped at the letterbox to strap on her helmet and grabbed the radio. It was very small and light, only the size of a cassette box. ¡§You¡¦d better not be tricking me, Neal Michael,¡¨ she thought, peddling off into the darkness.

Casey¡¦s legs were aching but she peddled faster. She didn¡¦t want to think. Each time she did, her mind would wander and she¡¦d slip off the cycle way and onto the dirt and gravel. The school was in sight and she was ready to do as she had been instructed. ¡§I didn¡¦t think I¡¦d be seeing this so soon,¡¨ she thought, dumping her bike under a nearby shrubbery. Her face was pulled into a tight grimace as she jumped over the fence. Casey sped down the white moonlit pathway, her unfitness taking its toll. ¡§I really¡Kpuff¡K.need¡K spend less time on the¡K¡Kcomputer.¡¨ She took each step carefully and looked around for any activity. ¡§This is insane! I¡¦m not a spy! What if I¡¦m caught for trespassing?¡¨ she thought, stepping quietly over the metal grates. ¡§Chaser this is Wolf, Radio check, over,¡¨ rang out a perfectly clear voice, echoing over the school yard. Casey yanked the radio off her belt and dropped to the ground, rolling over behind a rubbish bin. ¡§Jeez,¡¨ she said turning down the volume and hoping its deafening echoes didn¡¦t jeopardise her position. ¡§Wolf, this is Chaser, loud and clear, very loud. Over.¡¨ She whispered holding the radio close to her face.
¡§Chaser, this is Wolf, loud and clear, out.¡¨ Casey looked around nervously. Now she had to find a way into the school. An idea popped into her head and she crept along the outside walls, checking each window before running past. The yellow security light gave the school a supernatural glow. Casey¡¦s keen eyes were trained on the west side of the school, the Science faculty. She ran toward the west entrance, knowing that at lunch someone had smashed the glass out of the two doors. She crouched behind a nearby pillar and crawled up to the doors. The frames had been temporarily covered with paper and taped down. Casey pushed slightly on the plastic. The stick tape screeched. Casey bit her lip and continued to push at a steady rate until there was a hole, small enough for her to fit her hand into it. She felt around the cold metal, eyes looking upwards in concentration, and her hand caught the lock.
¡§Clud!¡¨ Casey pushed the door open slightly and surveyed the deserted hallway. Her shoes echoed on the newly polish floor and she could hear distant voices. Casey¡¦s mind raced, trying to think of a way to stay silent until at least she reached the carpet of the Maths Faculty. She pulled off her shoes and walked carefully down the hall. The vices grew louder and she heard bits of conversations. ¡§Element¡K¡K¡Krevolutionise¡K¡K..enemy¡K.wait¡K¡KWHO¡¨S THERE?¡¨ Casey dived for the carpet and ran under the stair. Somebody was upstairs. ¡§The EDD is picking up something. Something small.¡¨ It was a females¡¦ voice. Young and pleasant sounding. ¡§I¡¦ll go down and check. You take the left stairs and I¡¦ll the right¡¨. Casey started to get up to escape, time permitting. It would take them precious seconds to go down the stairs.
¡§Thud!¡¨ ¡§Thud!¡¨ Two black covered bodies jumped down from the second storey. Casey reeled back in shock. ¡§It¡¦s here somewhere. In this area.¡¨ Casey gulped. There was no where to go! Under the stairs was a group of lockers and old bag shelving. She quickly hid on the old shelf, now covered by the lockers. A tight fit but Casey was a little small for her age. A young but otherwise indistinguishable face searched around for a few seconds, then disappeared. ¡§I can¡¦t find it.¡¨ He said. ¡§Check behind the lockers,¡¨ said the woman. Casey plummeted forward and hid in the hollow under the stairs, lying very still. ¡§Nup,¡¨ he said.
¡¨Hmm maybe it¡¦s a glitch,¡¨ said the girl and they retreated upstairs. Casey breathed a heavy sigh. The female¡¦s voice seemed very familiar. She heard them start the conversation again. ¡§The element possesses strange powers. Fuel is its newest and most practical use. But if biological organisms are exposed there are some funky side effects.¡¨ Casey wrote down everything with a notepad from her emergency kit. The conversation finished with a ¡§Maybe we should check again,¡¨ from the boy. Casey rolled out from under the stairs and ran in the direction of English. ¡§It¡¦s on the move!¡¨ she heard the girl. Casey¡¦s mind sped. Another idea! The radio was the only was of seeing her? She turned the radio off. ¡§The signals¡¦ dropped! I¡¦m bumping up its sensitivity. We¡¦ll get them.¡¨ Neal didn¡¦t see this coming. ¡§Yes, there is still some activity with the person. But it¡¦s very weak. Who ever they are they¡¦re heading to the end of the school.¡¨ ¡§You are very loud people,¡¨ thought Casey, running past History and Geography. After English the only section of the school with two levels was Music and Metalwork Textiles and Art. They couldn¡¦t tell which level she was on! But they would be easier to catch separate. Casey ran to the end of the school. Her adrenaline was pumping through every vein in her body, keeping her going. She ran silently upstairs. She quickly set up her plan and ran back downstairs, hiding behind a large sculpture of something resembling a pile of ruber balls. ¡§We¡¦ll split up,¡¨ said the male. The female ran upstairs and the male in the metalwork classrooms. Casey ran back up stairs, puffing silently. The person was in the Music rooms she¡¦d set up. She crept into the room, gathering the equipment she needed. The person had a torch and was flashing it around the shelves and behind the piano. She crept up behind the lady and pulled a xylophone bag over her head, and grabbing the lady¡¦s arms. The woman struggled but Casey had the advantage of surprise and kicked her behind the knees, bringing her to the floor. ¡§You make a move or noise I¡¦ll shove this paint stripper up your nose.¡¨ She held a rag soaked it in with enough fumes to make the person shake. ¡§You¡¦ll breathe it and get brain damage, so shut it.¡¨ The unfamiliar person stopped struggling and Casey quickly tied her onto a chair with the rope from Art. A clock on the wall ticked loudly.
¡§Aww man! What if I don¡¦t get home in time for mum and dad. What if I don¡¦t get back in time for camp?¡¨ She gagged the person without taking off the bag. ¡§Now, let¡¦s get your little friend.¡¨ She dragged the chair to the other end of the room and checked the girl. A radio, similar to Casey¡¦s was clipped to her utility belt. ¡§Gypsy this is Tyrant, its all clear, how about you, over?¡¨ Casey smiled. ¡¨Tyrant, Gypsy¡¦s a little pre occupied now,¡¨ she said in a cruel voice. ¡§What have you done!¡¨ accused the voice on the other end of the radio, his voice breaking. A wave of guilt hit Casey and a lump seemed to form in her throat. Why was she doing this? She could just leave and give Michael the info. But maybe if she caught them, Michael might be impressed and stop treating her like an inferior or a silly little girl. She put these thoughts out of her mind and prepared for the other person, climbing on top of the half open door, the other xylophone bag in her hand. She threw an old chocolate ball from her pocket at one of the xylophones. It missed by a long shot but hit the wooden desk and the person flashed his torch into the room. Without touching the door he entered. ¡§Ohmigod!¡¨ he said, spotting his comrade tied up in the corner. Casey jumped down, pulling the bag over his head and landing on him. He fell into a crumpled heap and Casey tied his hands. The man didn¡¦t give up, dragging Casey and himself to his feet. He was unanticipatingly strong and shoved Casey into the wall, forcing her to let go. She grabbed the bottle of stripper and held it up to the girl. ¡§You move and I¡¦ll kill your associate. No bluff. I have acid and I¡¦ll drop it in her face.¡¨ The guy stood still. He was only a little bit taller than Casey. Her heart was pounding. She was scared but couldn¡¦t let them know that. She walked silently around him, watching his masked head turning, trying to find her. She kicked him behind the knees and tied him to a chair, gagging his mouth also. Casey pulled out her radio. ¡§Gypsy, Tyrant, this is HQ, what is going on? Over.¡¨ Casey jumped as both of the intruder¡¦s radios called. She didn¡¦t answer. ¡§Gypsy, Tyrant, this is HQ, I say again, what is going on? Over.¡¨ Casey grabbed the radio off the struggling boy¡¦s belt. ¡§Gypsy, Tyrant, back up teams this is HQ, code bruiser. All back up teams get in there!¡¨ Casey looked around confused. Bruiser was her pro-word. She ran over to the captives and lifted the girl¡¦s xylophone bag.
Casey gasped dropping the bag, her hands numb with shock. A blond girl with smiling eyes sat in the chair, mouth gagged. The girl had a round plain face, small almost turned up nose, smiling eyes, and was as young as her. ¡¥I¡¦m sorry; I must have made a mistake...¡¨ she mumbled, hastily untying the ropes. The girls¡¦ eyes seemed to smile more. ¡§Wait,¡¨ said Casey aloud, pulling the ropes tight again. ¡§Maybe I shouldn¡¦t untie you.¡¨ The girl groaned and jumped in her chair. Casey slowly lifted the bag of the other person to find herself in more disbelief. A boy Casey¡¦s age sat in front of her. Casey blushed and tried not to look in his blue-grey eyes, her heart already fluttering. He looked at her with big blue eyes, pleading her to untie him. Casey could hear thuds of heavy boots coming closer. ¡§Sorry guys,¡¨ she said putting the bags on, pausing for a second after placing the boy¡¦s on. They tried to talk but Casey was already busy planning an escape.
¡§This room here! Our two people are in there.¡¨ The people outside sounded serious. Casey looked around for an escape. The window! She pulled the blinds down on each window and, moving one aside as she opened the window and stood on the thin edge. She was on the second storey, looking down at hard concrete. The harsh cold winds of the night buffeted her face as she clung onto the glass pane. There had to be somewhere to go. She looked around desperately for a way down. There was a down pipe about 5m away. Way too far. The roof of the building was too high for her to reach. Inside, she heard the door open and, peeping in between the blinds, saw soldiers run in, brandishing weapons.
¡§Where is the Girl?¡¨ they asked untying the youth. They shook their heads.
¡§She¡¦s gone,¡¨ said the boy, looking grim faced. Someone pulled up the blind next to Casey and peered into the ground below. Casey held her breath and he withdraw, turning the other way. She heard the window lock closed.
¡§You were overpowered by one girl? A little girl with no training? You¡¦ve been training for over a month Miss Bracknell, and 4, Tyrell.¡¨ The soldiers set up to leave in tactical formation, the blond girl and the blue-eyed boy hidden in their ranks. The room was left deserted but the windows had been closed and, therefore, locked. Casey smiled, imagining the conversation she would have with her mother.
¡§What did you do last night, honey?¡¨ her mother would ask.
¡§Oh, I ran around the school, caught people who I thought were enemies but turned out to be kids then got stranded outside on a windowsill whist commandos searched the school for me.¡¨ She looked at the cloudy sky. It was getting colder and there were soldiers¡¦ torches illuminating parts of the oval. ¡§Maybe I should just jump.¡¨ She looked down at the hard ground and almost let go of the frame when she saw a man in black, pointing a rifle at her. Casey turned to run but there was nowhere to go. ¡§Ah!¡¨ she said quietly, as something punctured the skin in her left arm. Strangely there was little to no pain. Casey had enough time try to grab at the small dark sticking out of her jacket and feel herself let go and start to fall, both physically, and into a deep sleep. She never felt the strong arms catch her.

Casey Fischer


The following comments are for "The Training Agency"
by TAFischer

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