Wednesday, January 25, 2023

The Advancement of Mateo Matic: November 22, 2398

Marie called it in, and confirmed her suspicions. A spy satellite feed showed that a small speedboat-like watercraft was moving at top speed from the shores of Panama, while a fleet of larger ships were in pursuit. They could have overcome it at pretty much any time. There must be a reason that they want to maintain distance. The most likely explanation is that there is something dangerous on board, like a bomb, or a deadly chemical. Leona and Marie don’t want to teleport there if they don’t have to. According to Ramses’ research, their ability to metabolize the Bermuda Triangle water is diminishing. If they keep using it to reactivate their powers, it eventually won’t work anymore. Theoretically, they can’t overdose on the stuff, but also theoretically, they can. It’s here in case of an emergency, though, if the pursuing ships change tactics, or if either party reacts to their arrival. To be safe, by the time they make their interception, the SD6 team will put on their hazmat suits, just in case that’s what the problem is.
It took the team a long time, but they’re here now. They have the boats in their sights, and nothing has changed from the last satellite view that they saw. The pursuing ships are still 900 meters from the speedboat. It’s been on the water for so long, it has to be running out of power. It was going all night, so it had to rely on its battery reserves, and those things are not designed for overnight trips. The driver is running out of power, and it will probably happen soon. When it does, that could be enough to cause the ships to make bolder moves. The team has to get to it now, and figure this out. They don’t know if they’re target is good or bad, dangerous or harmless, so they’re not going to take any chances. Leona and Marie have their immortality water boosters inside their hazmat suits, ready to take the other three members of the team with them, plus the target, if necessary. Then again, they’re still not close enough to know if there even is only one person on the vessel. It’s the only one they can track using Ramses’ scanner, but that doesn’t mean that person is alone.
Once the team breaks the 900-meter radius, that’s when the ships start to change direction. They all move at the same time. “Oh, no,” Leona laments. “They’re coming in to attack us. Get your auto-injector ready.”
“No,” Marie says with a shake of her head. “That’s not what they’re doing. They’re leaving.” She’s right. They’re not getting into attack formation. They’re turning. It’s going to take them a long time at their sizes, going at their speeds, but they’re definitely turning away. From what, them? That is even weirder. What are they so afraid of? Why did they spend all this time and effort going after this little boat, only to bail when a three crew-sized tactical amphibious vessel shows up? Surely they have their own satellites, and would have seen them coming from literally miles away.
They’re not going to spend too much time dwelling on it. They get closer to the speedboat, which is being maneuvered into parallel position. Once they’re tied together, the hatch from the cabin opens. Bhulan Cargill climbs out of it, except it’s not Bhulan. It’s Mateo’s once-sister, Aquila in Bhulan’s body. “Why are you wearing those things?”
“We didn’t know what to expect,” Leona says. “This whole mission has been bizarre. Why were they coming after you, and why are they giving up now?”
Aquila looks back at the fleet. “Oh, they weren’t coming after me. Those are my escort ships. They were making sure no one attacked. We need to talk...about Mateo.”

No comments :

Post a Comment