Regular Spelling
Thoughts and observations about language

Radiation

Chapter 3

It was some time still before all preparations were in order and our flight was able to depart. If the plain woman’s flight time held true, it would give us less than an hour from landing time to find the man we were looking for before the explosion. We were originally going to have a representative from the Ministry of Information join us to help us with our investigation, but now time couldn’t afford that they join us before we went to the location.

Winds along our flight only made it worse. It was 8:30 Japan time when we finally landed, and we were met with police escort to bring us to the location where the explosion took place, a large open pavilion in Tokyo filled with people traveling in all directions. That trip itself took nearly a half hour, because we didn’t turn on sirens so as to not alert the bomber, but which gave us only minutes to find the bomb.

“We’ll never find it in time,” Mr. Raynor complained as we all started searching. Everyone I met on both days was there, as well as some more CIA agents and a number of Japanese officers all dressed casually to be undercover, and we all spread out to search the area to find where it was planted. We were all able to cover the entire possible area in ten minutes, but found nothing.

The tension was escalating as we met up again, with 3 minutes remaining. “Someone must be wearing it,” Mr. Raynor said angrily, eyes darting around everywhere. “Do we have anything that could find it in the time?”

“Negative,” one of the new CIA agents said. “Geiger counters aren’t picking up anything, it must be contained.”

“What about your Scroll, Mr. Collector?” It was the mustached gun man from the first meeting that said it, nearly ready to draw a gun of his own from the looks of it.

I pulled out the Scroll, ready to try anything. “I don’t see how the Scroll could-“ I stopped mid-sentence, amazed at what I saw. The heatmap was maximized, as I thought it would be with such heavy foot traffic, but a line of a new color - one I had never seen on the map before – cut through the map, and was fast approaching the marked center, where we were standing.

“Well I’ll be,” I said in surprised. “It can detect radiation. Good guess.” We looked up in front of us, and saw a person walking through the crowd, looking around him nervously and carrying a brown box in his hands. I ran my hand against the Scroll in a movement to narrow the search field, and the line became larger, and definitely pinpointing it to that man.

“We found him,” Mr. Raynor called into his cuff to alert the Japanese officers that were holding perimeter. “Directly in front of us, carrying a large box and looking around nervously.”

I looked at the Pocketwatch as the officers moved in. 9:11 and 40 seconds. Just a little over a minute before the detonation.  I then looked back up, and saw the man drop the package, turn to look at us, and turn to run the opposite direction.

It was a flurry of movement. The mustached man drew his gun and fired several shots into the air, shouting out, and everyone else ducked down to the ground. I pulled out the Revolver and took at the man, who was the only one still up and running, and fired.

“Get everyone back!” I shouted, and then moved forward to the bomb, putting on the gloves as I moved. One of the Japanese officers near it shouted out something, and everyone around it stood up and ran away screaming, leaving me room. I quickly tore open the box, finding inside it a metal toolbox clasped closed. Not having time to think about defusing the weapon, I tore open the toolbox, and found a sealed container inside it with the symbol the modern world was using universally for radioactive, and yanked it out of the box.

Just seconds after, something else in the toolbox detonated, creating a small explosion. It didn’t do much, apparently just designed to open the container to cause it to leak. One of the officers moved in and sprayed it with a foam to put out the fire, so we could identify the materials later, and I set down the container so someone could take some photographs of it.

“We need a team to dispose of that,” Mr. Raynor said, starting to call someone, but I stopped him. I pulled out the Pocketwatch, the Sundial, and the Silver Ring, and set the Sundial on the ground next to the container.

“Hold on,” I said, “I think I might be able to send it away. What’s a good safe location for storing radioactive materials?”

“Uhh,” one of the other CIA people said. “Yucca Mountain?”

“No,” Mr. Raynor said, shaking his head. “Yucca Mountain hasn’t been approved yet. Only sure storage locations are at nuclear plants.”

“Well if it needs to go somewhere,” the mustached gunman said, “what about Prypiat, inside Chernobyl?”

I turned to look at him. “Chernobyl? Prypiat? Sounds Russian.”

“There was a nuclear plant there,” Mr. Raynor stated, “during the Cold War. Chernobyl was the name of the plant. One of the reactors melted down and exploded, irradiating the whole area.  The plant itself is now encased in concrete so seal everything in.”

“That might work,” I said. “Someone have a map they can show me where it is?”

One of the other CIA agents came forward with a handheld computer, and showed me on a map the location, starting from a full world map view and then constricting the view all the way down to the exact overhead view. I nodded, having the location secure in my mind, and put on the ring. I held the Pocketwatch in the hand with the ring, and the Sundial in the other hand.

I concentrated on the Pocketwatch, driving energy into it from the Ring to boost the residual power from my master, and directed it in front of me with the Sundial. A hole in space began to open, the same maroon color as the pool of energy, but then it soon grew to black, except along the edges.

“My word,” the glasses woman from the first meeting said in amazement, and stepped up to it. She held up a strange device that clicked to it, but the clicking didn’t change any. She held it up to the container on the ground to test it and the clicking rate grew to an amazing speed, so she stepped away from it quickly. She then took out a light and shined it into the hole, and we could see some rubble and other things in the room shown.

“Amazing,” she said with some more excitement. “An actual wormhole into Chernobyl! And the radiation can’t leak through it.”

Mr. Raynor picked up the Gloves, which I took off to use the Ring, and went over and picked up the container, then dropped it into the hole. I then let off the power, and the portal closed. “Curiosity can be explored later, people,” he said sternly as he removed the Gloves. I put the things I had taken away, and took the Gloves from him and put them away as well.  “So, you shot the guy with your gun. Is he the one responsible, or is he working for someone else.

I shook my head and frowned. “He is working for someone else, but he doesn’t know who.  He was hired anonymously, driven to the place to pick up the equipment under blindfold, received it in a dark, empty warehouse, and then driven back home under blindfold as well.”

“Dang,” the gunman said, “they knew we would have had the Revolver so kept it all secret from him.”

I laughed in response. “That’s the sort of thing you would do to keep information from coming up in normal interrogation. Revolver just streamlines the process. Remember, it has been missing for 400 years.”

“Well in any case,” Mr. Raynor said, clapping his hands. “Let’s get to operations base, and try to figure it out from the clues we have.” We all nodded, and gathered up the toolbox to pack to the American Embassy.

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