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86, Irvine Part Two
Posted By: Vinziah Arcus<were.midget@gmail.com>
Date: 1 October 2006, 2:33 am

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      Here's part two, Read and Review. Constructive criticsm would be great but thanks for having a look anyway.

      Irvine had made it about ten metres before the guards opened fire on him. The orders had, after all, been to keep everyone inside the complex. First it was the guards atop the wall, and then a dozen more on foot and most recently a group of five or six dog handlers. He'd since thrown off his guard's uniform, which would at least stall the dogs. The complex was surrounded for miles in every direction by thick pine forest. It was just not there, or may as well have been to all but the highest authorities of the UNSC and the marines that worked on site.

      Irvine was sprinting through the dark, leaping knotted roots and kicking up untouched piles of pine needles. His reflexes were astonishing, he felt as though he'd left himself on automatic: As the next obstacle came into view in front of his feet, he would readjust his entire body to jump over or steer around or kick aside the object without forethought or afterthought.

      From the moment the bullets began to zip past Irvine had dived into the forest and headed straight in the same direction the gate had been facing but as soon as he was out of sight he had begun to slowly bank west in a u-turn to go around past the western side of the complex and head south, in the last direction a search team would look. Dogs of course were most useful for having the ability to not require sight to search which almost scrapped that plan. At least he had a head start.

      As Irvine ran, he thought. The most obvious question he was asking himself was why did Mendez help him to escape? What was it he had said? Well done, 86. You passed the test… Irvine hoped Mendez didn't expect him to learn some lesson from all this and return to the Spartan II program. That wasn't about to happen.

       He was deep in thought when a bullet flew into a tree next to him at about knee level. Irvine was both surprised and disappointed that his strategy had been so quickly found out. With out a thought he began to zigzag this way and that, to crouch and roll and dive and swerve. He moved in a chaotic way without pattern as several more bullets missed their target. Irvine remembered spending a month and a half having bullet-dodging tactics forced into his brain like a program installed on a computer.

      He sprinted on in this manner; it would be a good kilometre before he was completely out of range of snipers. Irvine ran almost horizontally for three steps around the trunk of a huge tree native to his continent. A fallen tree appeared about ten metres ahead. Irvine instantly adjusted his speed and the size of each step so that he comfortably leapt off his right foot and placed his left foot onto the fallen tree. As he forced himself into the air off the limb one more shot rang out through the air. A bullet entered Irvine's left leg behind the knee and continued through, obliterating his kneecap and sending him off balance. Instead of bounding off of the tree his leg failed and his body twisted around. He fell backwards off the tree, but instead of landing on the ground he continued to fall where there was nothing, down a very deep hole…

2000 Hours June 14, 2532(Earth Calendar)
Semper Idem, Fortuna

      A shrill alarm clock began to ring. The jangling bells resounded around Irvine's small apartment and shook him from his eventful, dreamed recount. By the time a normal conscious person would have become aware the clock was ringing, Irvine's arm shot out and silenced the sound. His muscle-bound arm dropped lazily onto the mattress. After several motionless seconds Irvine threw the sheets off him and swung his body across to sit on the side of his bed facing the window.

Irvine was now twenty-one. He was tall, powerfully built though not overly muscled, and ruggedly handsome. His black hair hung lightly over his forehead and edged at his sharp features.

      He rubbed his palms into his eyes, shook his head and yawned. Venetian blinds filtered the orange, dawn sunlight into strips on the carpet. He leant forward and pulled the blinds up, revealing the city of Semper Idem as she switched from calm, neutral daylight to wild, vibrant nightlife. Semper Idem, Always The Same.

      Semper Idem was the richest, most corrupt city on the planet of Fortuna. Fortuna was named after the Goddess of Fortune on account of the oil-rich single landmass. Semper Idem was named by a wealthy, cocky mayor in a famously controversial speech during which he clearly stated his city would never be tarnished by the touch of a poor person but would forever be inhabited by the rich and powerful. The massive city was dominated by only the most villainous, deceitful and merciless.

      Irvine worked for these people. The highest paying, the most respected, often the best dressed. He was the perfect man for the job. Irvine didn't exist; he had died at the age of six, his family mourned him and he never showed up at school again. He had been trained in the art of killing from the age of six. He was chosen as one of the most resourceful, intelligent, physically capable children in the known universe.

      At the age of fourteen, Spartan 086 escaped from the complex on Reach where he was being trained. That fact was not widely known. Few understood the importance or even the existence of the Spartan II Project and less knew about the escapee.

      Irvine was housed and cared for by one of his more generous clients. He was also provided with a license and equipment. The license was for a motorbike and the equipment was a wide range of firearms and other weapons.

      Irvine pulled a clothes hanger with a pressed, black, leather suit and disappeared inside the bathroom. Passing an open briefcase full of notes, tossed carelessly aside, it seemed. Minutes later he stepped into the garage of his hotel. His footsteps echoed around the wide room inhabited only by various vehicles. Irvine grabbed a ball of keys with a dull jangle from a pocket and pressed a button.

      His bike beeped and the engine roared into life. The bike – sleek, black, shiny, streamlined and very, very fast – manoeuvred itself slowly around the garage and halted in front of Irvine. He pulled his helmet from the handle bar and slipped it down over his head as he swung his leg over the bike and settled into position, practically lying horizontally. He flicked back his wrist and swung the rear end of the bike in a half turn amidst the screech of a tire and a cloud of smoke.

       The bike fishtailed as he sped towards the exit. He activated a sensor that started the gate at the end of the garage rising. As he accelerated, the gate slowly rolled up. Irvine dipped his helmet down further and passed cleanly under the gate with several millimetres to spare.

      The gate continued to rise as Irvine sped up the access ramp and soared onto the street below, lit by yellowing streetlights, landing semi-gracefully before twisting and swerving into the other traffic and disappearing amidst a convoy of goods trucks.

      Irvine slowed at a set of traffic lights and checked the time. Eight fifteen. Good. He was due at the club by half past eight. He had everything he needed with him on the bike. If anything went wrong, it wouldn't be his fault.

      Ten minutes later he swerved suddenly off the road and down a narrow alley. His black bike was swept into the shadow and disappeared, silent against the collection of vehicles on the street. He parked the bike at the end of the alley and swung himself off it. Irvine pressed another button and the headlight flashed on then off. He threw his helmet over the handle bars and grabbed a long briefcase.

      The alleyway had more than one exit. An unused side door sat neglected and rusting in its frame. It was invisible in the darkness but Irvine had no trouble seeing it. He twisted the doorknob until the old fashioned lock blocked him. He kept on twisting, crushing the inch thick lock with superhuman ease. Finally the lock broke completely and the heavy door swung open.

      Irvine was now in an unlit basement. He could hear the music of the nightclub upstairs and strode for the wooden staircase. He walked silently up the stairs and was met by another locked door. White light seeped out form under this door. As expected. Irvine knew his way around the entire building. He was given schematics by the shady looking guy who'd commissioned tonight's job. Probably a drug dealer, like most then.

      Irvine pressed his ear against the white-painted door and listened to the conversation inside. He heard it clearly. Four men, security guards, discussing a porno magazine.

      Irvine twisted the lock as before. The security guards saw the knob turning and heard the lock splitting, "What the hell is that?" One of them jumped out of his chair, sending the magazine to the ground, and grabbed his baton from the loop on his belt. The others followed.

      The lock snapped and Irvine kicked the door open calmly. Without hesitation a guard swung at him. Irvine, still carrying his briefcase, made no attempt to block the hit, but instead took it the sternum. There was a dull sound of metal on metal through skin and the baton bounced back from Irvine's chest.
      "Who the fuck are you?" Asked the attacking guard fearfully.
      Irvine didn't answer.

      A second guard, a very large man, charged at him and swung his baton. This time Irvine caught the baton in his free hand. He twisted it and snapped the man's arm at the elbow and shoulder joints. The man's scream was silenced by the insulation of the security room but the office's inhabitants heard it clearly. Irvine twisted the already demolished arm behind the man's back, twisting his body to face away, and kicked him in the spine, sending him flying onto a desk and smashing his head.

      The remaining three guards attacked at once. Irvine blocked two strikes with his briefcase while he switched stance and kicked the third attacker in the wrist, bending back his hand. The guard dropped to the floor cradling his hand and squeezing his face into a distorted wince.

      One of the two guards left pulled out a taser and shot Irvine in the chest.

      Irvine pulled the dart out of his midsection, grunted and spoke to the guards for the first time, "Jesus Christ, is that voltage even legal anymore?" Before either of the guards could reply Irvine pulled hard on the wire attaching the dart to the gun, wrenching it from the man's grip. He swung the gun around his head once before smacking the guard on the side of the face and knocking him out.

      The remaining guard was the largest of the men, tall and muscle ridden. He dropped his baton. Irvine dropped his briefcase, anticipating a hand-to-hand fight. But the guard had different ideas. He pulled the drawer out from the desk behind him and grabbed a new baton, the same as before only longer and electrically charged. The guard ran forward, Irvine did the same. The man swung with his right arm, Irvine blocked the attack with his left arm, taking the force of the high voltage shock. He struck out with a right handed uppercut followed by two jabs in quick succession to the face.

      Irvine moved with unimaginable speed yet struck hard and with an incredible amount of force. As the guard stumbled backwards Irvine kneed the man in the groin before slicing three times at the man's neck with the side of his hand. The man doubled over and fell forward, dead before he hit the ground.

      Before he exited through the only other door, Irvine kicked the man with the broken wrist in the head, knocking him out, and picked up his briefcase.

      Irvine was now behind the stage of the nightclub. He soon found what he was looking for: A ladder leading to a girder suspended ten metres above the ground. He climbed the ladder with one hand. Once he was near the top he threw the briefcase up onto the beam and used both hands to pull himself up.

      The girder was lined with fluorescent lights sending beams outlined by a mist machine onto the floor of the club. Irvine sat behind a large light where he couldn't be seen, because of the darkness behind him and the glare from the light in front of him. The perfect spot. He pulled a pair of black gloves from his pocket and slipped them tightly over his hands. As he pulled the left one on he noted the time: Eight Twenty-nine, perfect.

      Irvine put his hands on two clips on the briefcase and flicked them up. Time to get to work.