The world changed April 2nd, 23 days ago; the change started with flashes of light high in the Central Pacific Sky.
Thursday, April 22nd, at 08:45 Cali is called into the LA Mayor's office for a meeting. She is asked to help the FBI in a mass murder investigation in Montana; an Awakened may be involved. She agrees and heads off with FBI Special Agent in Charge Sean Moynihan once the Mayor clears it with her boss. A disastrous first attempt to capture a powerful insane Awakened by the FBI leaves one Agent seriously injured and all shaken. The suspect was driven off due to surprise by Cali. They were lucky.
The new team under SAC Ferguson arrives with their own Awakened FBI Agent Lafontaine, an untried rookie pulled from training. SAC Ferguson dismisses most of Cali's and SAC Moynihan's advice. Cali makes a call to Major Rizer an Army Specialist on Awakened to speak with Sac Ferguson who rejects the advice and proceeds with his game plan. This time two FBI Agents are killed and only Cali and Agent Lafontaine intervention drives off the killer. Sac Ferguson presses ahead with another ambush, this time Cali and Lafontaine are to make initial contact and restrain Clearsky until the team can close and complete the capture. Again the plan is a disaster; after nearly killing both Cali and Lafontaine. Only their ability to self-heal rapidly kept them alive long enough for Sheriff Donner to hit Clearsky with a high powered rifle round. Clearsky self-heals and runs for it with Cali and Lafontaine in close pursuit. Clearsky enters an abandoned mine shaft with the team close behind.
Clearsky triggers his own ambush burying Cali in a mine collapse, only Cali's warning allowed the others to make it out.
Cali becomes conscious unable to move or see, she is buried under a rock fall. Suddenly she hears Lafontaine in her mind, Lafontaine's gift is telepathy. She was dug out, supplied with fresh blood and sent back to her hotel room to rest and recover. The Awakened group in LA were trying to reach her so she got online and logged into TGN-LA (TrueGhoulNet LA chatroom). The world exploded. Everyone was going on about something that had happened in China, everyone and their brother were online. Apparently China had been torturing its Awakened. China did scientific experiments on the Awakened in China until some rebelled and broke out. China kept this under wraps for a week. Cali was asked to review twenty-seven video files to bring her up to speed. As she started to review the files Agent Lafontaine came by; she had been asked to research this very thing and prepare something akin to a threat assessment. Together they reviewed what was a true horror story. They were shaken as they watched Awakened after Awakened killed by various tortures by the Chinese technicians until two different Awakened held at different locations were able to release themselves and other Awakened. A male Awakened turned into a cloud of nanites. His body was totally consumed. It took Cali a moment to figure out this wasn't a creative form of dying. The cloud moved off passing the 'gift" on to other Awakened until they took over the whole complex using vicious violence, a revenge for their suffering. A female Awaken had a different power she seemed to take over the will of all she met having them aid her free other Awakened and assisting in their escape in a massive convoy of thousands. All this occurred eight days earlier and the news was just getting out.
Lafontaine received a call from SAC Ferguson announcing the team's recall to Washington, immediately. Lafontaine and Cali made a restrained but emotional parting.
This left SAC Moynihan to take up the hunt for Clearsky again with local support. Cali made her farewells too and left on the flight bring Moynihan's new team. It was Saturday April 25th and she was going home, alive never to volunteer again.
Read alsoLife as a New Hire, Warrior Prince, Volume VII
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