Find an invisible man in another dimension? All in a day’s work for the Trace, Rescue, and Identification League.
Travel to a godforsaken planet on the outskirts of space. Check. Hold intrusive military goons at bay. Check. Find an invisible man in a different dimension. Check. Finish the vacation TRAIL jerked you back from to do it? Easier said than done.
Yanked back from their first vacation in ages, Jee and Dane get handed a top priority mission. The pay is better than they’ve earned before as agents for the Trace, Rescue, and Identification League. After this, they might not need jobs. They’re the best there is, and the item, person, or secret hasn’t been invented that these two can’t recover. Until now. After all, how do you find an invisible man in another dimension? The archaeologist in charge can’t afford this fee, and neither can the military. So the real question is who — or what — is behind the request to trail Kaiwulf?
New Braeswyck, Colonies of Man
TRAIL Field Office
January 24, 15128 AD (151.28.24 New Terran Date [NTD])
The com unit in Jeff Thompson’s office crackled to life. “Security here. Jee arrived, boss, and you were” — The sound of splintering wood followed –“right. Oh, man! There goes another door. What’d you do to her this time?”
Thompson disconnected. He activated the monitors on his wall and stood. TRAIL Agent Jee Tonopah might be the shortest agent in the company, but she had enough temper for half a dozen.
Jee and her partner, Dane Raphyel, had passed through every scanner in the building to get this far into the enclave, yet right there in plain sight on both their hips sat weapons. Fat lot of good TRAIL’s security did. The guards outside his office backed away from the pair without a challenge.
“What am I paying you clowns for? At least slow them down. Cool her off!”
But no, the outer door to his assistant’s office banged open and thumps sounded on the floor. A lamp on the desk shook as if Jee had an elephant with her. Dane dwarfed his partner.
“Computer, unlock entry door.” Jee would kick it in if he kept it sealed. Last time it had taken months to ship in replacement parts.
The BioMate embedded in his arm flashed a warning about heart rate, so he tightened his grip on the stress-soother stone in his hand. All it did was bruise his palm. He flung the rock aside.
The TRAIL agents blew into his office like twin whirlwinds.
He forced himself not to back away.
“How dare you!” Jee dumped a tattered knapsack onto the floor. She kicked the visitor’s chair out of her way, then slammed her hands onto the desk and glared at him like a dragon ready to flame him into a puddle of blackened flesh.
Dane folded his arms and leaned against the door, blocking any escape it might offer.
Thompson eased around the desk to survey the damage. “Fight fire with fire,” his therapist had told him. Time to put it to the test. He pointed at the splintered chair. “I paid six thousand sig-creds for that. It’s eleventh kilo-century Terran.”
Jee snorted. “If you paid that much for a four hundred year-old chair you got taken. Beats me why you’d admit to being so stupid.”
He dug his fingernails into his palms. A month of stress therapy trashed after one minute with this woman. It’s only money. He sucked in a deep breath, held it for a count of three and exhaled. “No matter. My assistant found a craftsman to repair that rare Fellsian vase you smashed six months ago. Maybe this can be fixed, too.”
Jee flung dark curls out of her eyes. “Do you have any idea how long it took to get reservations on a first class sleepliner to Earth? How dare you call me back here? TRAIL doesn’t own me, Jeff Thompson.”
“Now, Jee, I–
“I’d be half way there if it wasn’t for you. How dare you cancel my leave? Who do you think you are?”
“Watch this holovid before you give me a definite no.”
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About Kayelle Allen
Kayelle Allen is a best selling American author. Her unstoppable heroes and heroines include contemporary every day folk, role-playing immortal gamers, futuristic covert agents, and warriors who purr.
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