Agent X sat with one leg crossed over the other as she sipped a cappuccino made with Sebastian’s sky-high espresso machine. It must have cost him an arm and a leg to have it installed. She gazed out at the wispy white clouds and the sprawling wilderness below them, and then at Chase, whose calm expression betrayed nothing. He had been quiet the entire flight. It gave her time to think and prepare for when they touched down in Triumphia– hopefully before the helicopter.
Feeling restless, Agent X took a lap through the private jet’s interior, opening and closing panels wherever Sebastian might have a hiding place. Near the bar cart, she found a shelf full of neuroscience books. He kept drones under the seat cushions. In the panels above the seats, where you would normally store suitcases, she found a huge collection of weapons. Rifles, pistols, ammunition, nunchucks, bulletproof vests, and a vast array of knives. It was like a miniature Malum training center. Sebastian used these? Agent X thought about Sebastian, a smart billionaire who succeeded because of his connections and wealth. Did she know anything about him at all?
“Check this out,” she said, tossing some ammunition on Chase’s lap. She picked up a pistol with a navy-blue chrome finish, and started loading it with bullets.
"So you’ve used a gun before?” Chase asked.
“Yes.” She didn’t elaborate.
“I’ve been wondering. What is Goliath’s upper management doing with Sebastian’s private jet? Does he have a deal with you guys?”
Agent X had a fake backstory for herself, but she didn’t know enough about Sebastian to spill any of his dirty secrets. When Agent X had received Sebastian’s file, she was confused why they had given her no information. She knew he was powerful and famous, and had connections all over Corver City and beyond, with control over DarkWinds and Goliath. She knew Triumphia wanted him. But she didn’t know WHY. Agent X was told not to ask questions, so she hadn’t.
But now she had so many. Why didn’t Triumphia trust her to complete the mission herself? What did that mean for her future? Her life was this mission. Without the mission and without Triumphia, what was her purpose?
She shoved the thoughts away. All she had to do was come up with a cover story. She told Chase that Bash Industries and Goliath had a deal. Sebastian bought out mom-and-pop stores to create a Goliath retail monopoly. Because the sales were in Bash Industries’ name, nothing could be traced back to Goliath. In return, Sebastian had control over Goliath’s assets. But when Sebastian broke their contract, Goliath had assigned her to collect his assets, including the jet.
“But now Sebastian has been kidnapped by Triumphia.”
“I bet they’re collecting from him as well. He has a lot of enemies.”
Chase nodded his head slowly, and Agent X blew out a breath, feeling relieved that he had bought the story. He didn’t need to know the truth: that she had booked Sebastian’s private jet by contacting her higher-up and asking for a way back. Scheduling the flight had been almost too easy. But if Chase found out Triumphia had that kind of power, that she had that kind of power– he might poke holes in her plan.
She strapped the loaded gun to her belt and rifled through the rest of Sebastian’s drawers. She got a pen and paper, and started laying out their game plan. First, Agent X drew a crude map of Triumphia. “Triumphia’s Hub has a private hangar,” she said, drawing a long rectangle and a pentagon to represent the Hub. This was where the government officials and scientists lived and worked. Next, she drew the Citadel, a circle across the street. This was her home, the military base with training rooms, long hallways of soldier’s rooms, and the prison where Sebastian might be. “If the helicopter gets there after us, we’ll sabotage them. If they have already arrived, Sebastian will be in prison. It’s heavily guarded. We’ll have to find a way in.”
“This is insane,” Chase said. “What if they throw us in jail as soon as we get there?”
“They won’t,” Agent X assured him. “Just follow my lead.”
The jet’s intercom crackled with the sound of the pilot’s voice. “Folks, no sign of a helicopter yet. We’re 20 minutes from touchdown. Buckle up.”