Thursday, September 21, 2023

Microstory 1979: From the Shadows

Generated by Google Workspace Labs text-to-image AI software
Leonard: No, she’s still not here. Ophelia? Ophelia? Can you hear me?
Micro: *walking up from the shadows* I’m blocking all signals.
Leonard: Report.
Micro: *smiling* Report. You’re learning, young padawan. First off, are you okay? You, Ophelia, and the prisoner? How did you get back here?
Leonard: We used one of Anaïs’ contacts to get across the borders, and then a bus.
Micro: *nodding* I’m glad you’re okay. I wanted to help, but we couldn’t tip Sachs off. Not that it mattered. Parsons escalated things at the safehouse, and we were forced to reveal the truth in front of Sasho. We still don’t know if we can trust him. That’s why I asked you to come here. This was our only way to keep Vogel safe and alive until we can figure out how many moles there are left in the government. He is alive, isn’t he?
Leonard: He’s fine. He’s in a safehouse that I set up for myself while I was free, but before DExA began. *looking around* I assume this is yours?
Micro: All I could do was hope that your parolee told you where the Salmon Civic Center would be if we were in Salmonverse.
Leonard: We had lunch in this area once in my home universe. He pointed it out. Seemed innocuous and meaningless at the time.
Micro: I’m glad that he did.
Leonard: I’m taking Vogel to Parsons. Enough of this cloak and dagger crap. We are not equipped to hold onto the suspect on our own, and every day we spend in the cold gets us closer to being burned.
Reese: I’m pleased to hear you say that. *walks up from the shadows*
Leonard: This was all just a test?
Micro: Have you heard of Lima Syndrome where you’re from?
Leonard: No.
Reese: We don’t have it either. Apparently it’s when you start to sympathize with someone you have in captivity. I had to be sure you weren’t compromised. Or Ophelia.
Leonard: Oh, the Grapley Effect. Yeah, we have that.
Reese: *hands Leonard a folder* This is what we have on Sachs. I had a friend from my military days look into it independently to verify it. He’s been playing us the whole time.
Leonard: I assume he took a shot at Vogel to shut him up?
Micro: That’s our assumption as well. We need to find out what—and who—he knows.
Leonard: *looking over the documents* This begs the question...
Reese: Director Washington? She’s the one who assigned Sachs to our department. Yeah, I’m worried about her loyalties too. That’s not our job, though. The Internal Compliance Commission will investigate on their own.
Leonard: In the meantime, what happens to us?
Reese: We’ve been shut down. But there’s hope for us yet.
Leonard: In what way?
Myka: *coming out of the shadows with a bunch of others* We’re working out of here now. Congratulations, Miazga, you’ve just joined a rogue operation.
Leonard: Not my first.

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