Sunday, 18 September 2011


          The next time Max opened his eyes, he was looking straight up into the eyes of a hypno-technician. He recognised it at once, because the eyes locked onto his in an instant and, never blinking, they began to implore him silently with their gorgeously soothing depths of limitless love.  But he wan't lulled and he wan't fooled. He was prepared for this and almost anything else they wanted to throw at him.
          Tom Elliot watched through the one way window and shook his head grimly. A few minutes later, when the technician reported its lack of success, Tom sent it away and made the call to headquarters.
          "Jack," he said, connecting at once through his direct line, "I hate to say this, but we blew it. We should have taken the wife, too. It's only been 8 hours, but I can see that there isn't a chance in hell that we can get Max to willingly give us what we want.  He'll never willingly join the Company. There is no way we are going to get those plans out of him without more leverage."
          "No, don't you think we tried that already?  We should have known he'd already be vaccinated against our truth drugs. And, no, he's way ahead of us there, too.  He's got some software block installed in him so our hypno-technicians can't get anything out of him either. You have to believe me, Jack. We're lost unless the Director relents and lets us use something more effective, like out and out torture." Tom paced the cubicle.
         "That is, unless it's not too late to pick up the wife.  Listen, jack, it may not be too late.  If she's still at home, I can get Dr Lerner to pick her up. I'll have him tell her that Max is staying with him and wants her to join him. I'll think of something - and I'll put together a back up plan, too. We're going to need her for leverage, I realise that now.  Yes. it was a mistake. Right. I'm on it now." And he hung up and stopped pacing to watch Max, who was still lying prone on the bed in the next room. But Max was struggling with his straps now and looking pretty pissed off.
          Might as well send one of the aides in there to let him loose, Tom thought. Get him to relax a bit. Wait for him to put his guard down. Then he checked the contact list on his cell for Dr Lerner's name. Yes, there it was.  Good. Max trusted him, so there was no reason why his wife should be suspicious. He rang the number. "Lerner? Yes, it's me. Look, we have a bit of a problem with Max. No, he's fine. None the worse for wear, believe me.  Just misses his wife. Yes, I'll admit we made a mistake. We should have brought the two of them in together.  No, that's just the problem.  He won't give it up and he is insisting that we bring him his wife. We think we can get him to be more forthcoming if he is certain his wife is all right."
          "I need you to drive over to their house and pick her up," he continued. "No, I have no idea if she's still at home or if she's noticed that Max is missing. I'm hoping that she thinks he's with you at the University." Tom watched Max through the glass again. He'd better get an aide in there quickly before he hurt himself. Then he turned away and sat down in the plastic chair near the small table by the door.
          "Listen carefully, Lerner.  This is what I need you to do. First, I want you to telephone her. Tell her that Max came to your house early this morning. Tell her that he thought his data was being compromised, so he brought his PC with him and came directly to your home. Tell her he is with you and that he's safe, but that he is worried about her and wants you to bring her to him."   
          "No, just make something up if she questions you further, or wavers.  But tell her you are on your way and for god's sake, get over there as fast as you can.  Yes, and bring her here."
          He rang off and stood up, pressed the  buzzer by the door to call an aide. A young man, dark skinned and fine boned, neatly dressed in white lab coat and carrying a small chrome tray with various glass tubes in it, answered the bell.             "Dil," Tom addressed him, reading the name tag over his pocket, "I need you to sedate out guest again.  You had better do it while he's still restrained."
          "Yes, sir," Dil answered, waiting expectantly for further instructions.
          "Then, when he's out, I want you to take off the straps and remove them from the room, so that when our guest wakes up he can move around freely in our guest room and use the facilities. Understood?"
          "Perfectly," Dill answered, turning on his heel, and he walked back out into the hall.
          Tom let the door shut behind the aide before sitting back down in the plastic chair and with his elbows on the table, cradled his head in his hands and began to work out his back up plan.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

POWER SOURCE - Chapter 4 - Wake Up!

         Max was gently awakened by vague muffled sounds, coming to him like the soft cries of the seagulls calling from faraway over the ocean. He hadn't opened his eyes yet and he just lay where he was in a dreamy state. He felt sleepy still and thought perhaps he should allow himself to fall back to sleep.
He decided to turn over and that was when he realised that something wasn't quite right. The sheets must be twisted around him, he thought, because he seemed to be caught in them and actually, he could not move at all. "Maddy!" he called out for his wife, and his voice echoed back to him, all muffled and weird, and he opened his eyes for the first time.
He was laying flat on his back in a bedroom, but not his bedroom. The light was dim, but he could see the low ceiling and inset LED lights and recognised the design of one of those new Plastiment Homes. The rounded corners of the room gave it away. And it wasn't a sheet that was wrapped tightly around him, although he was covered by a sheet and quilt, he was strapped with his arms at his side to an otherwise relatively comfortable bed.
He still felt groggy and his eyes were crusty and he wanted to reach up and rub them, but he couldn't and that was when he started yelling.
"Hey! Is anybody there? Hey!" he yelled louder, with his voice reverberating in his head, causing an uncomfortable pain to begin to throb in his forehead.
"Hey, what's going on? Will somebody come in here please?"
He wasn't so groggy that he hadn't already conjectured what was happening to him. He had always known, ever since his father had revealed what he knew that awful night on the Island, just before he died, that he would also be watched and if he wasn't careful, he too would be in danger of being too useful an asset to be allowed to live his own life and make his own choices.  There were lots of greedy servants of unscrupulous and obscenely wealthy organizations who would not hesitate to take what they wanted if they couldn't buy it - and he had made it clear that he wasn't selling.
No one came into the room when he called and he wondered if anyone was in the house at all. But he had heard voices, he was almost certain he had heard voices. He could turn his head and he did so, surveying the room, looking for a window or one of those one-way glass devices that looked like a mirror.
It was a nicely decorated room, if you liked the modern minimalist style.  It looked like it could be someone's real bedroom, but somehow he doubted it. It was just a clever duplicate, made to resemble a comfortable home and to put who ever they usually kept in here at ease. They were probably watching him through one of their one-way mirrors right now.  
He suddenly remembered Maddy again, and felt a pang of fear. He wondered if she had been taken, too. He wondered if she was safe. And he began to fret and worry and he had to bite his lip to keep himself from crying.