Bad Seed Rising


Tablo reader up chevron

Chapter 1

I watched the video again, just to see if I could pinpoint the exact moment she did it.  She was extremely fast.  Cunning.  Smart.  They never suspected her, not with her bright smile and I'm sorry sir.

    "Hawthorne."  I called her into the study and rewound the tape again, just so she could watch it and verify what I already knew.  That this girl was the one. 

    "Sir?"  She popped her head around the corner, grease smeared across her face and her goggles propped on her head. 

    "Watch the girl.  Tell me if you can see her do it."  I pressed play and she leaned closer to the screen, holder her breath as she waited for something to happen.  But you never see it.  No matter how times you look for it.  I knew she did it though. 

    "She's good, I'll give her that.  Who is she?"  She pulled her goggles off her head and started wiping the lenses with a handkerchief.  She was always covered in grease.

    "She," I said pointing at the screen, "Is Mr. Charleston's new partner."  I leaned back in my chair and watched Hawthorne start pacing.  She did this whenever she was thinking.  And she was always thinking. 

    "He's gonna hate that.  He doesn't like working with others, you know that."  Of course I knew that.  But Mr. Charleston didn't make the calls on this operation.  I did.  And I wanted her.  "The place doesn't look familiar to me.  Where's she from?"  Hawthorne put her goggles back on her head and started winding what one would think was a wrist watch.  However I was aware that the time piece could be anything.  Literally anything.  She had a knack for inventing useful tools, which is why I picked her. 

    "She is from American.  New York City actually.  This video was taken three days ago not far from the place I believe she calls home." 

    "Has he done something to you?  Are you mad at him?  Why on earth would you pair him with a New York City girl?"  She exclaims, whipping her head up so fast that her goggles fall to the floor.  She swoops down and picks them up, wiping the lenses off again while staring at me. 

    "I do not make decisions with him in mind.  I do what is right for the team and for the missions.  She is right."  I say, pointing at the screen.  She was more than just right.  She was perfect. 

    "He's going to be livid when he finds out.  HE thinks he can do all of this on his own."  Hawthorne was right.  Mr. Charleston hardly trusted me.  Having him paired up with her was a lunatic idea.  But Mr. Charleston didn't run this organization.  I did.  And I wanted her.

    "So, what's her name?  And when should I expect her?"  Hawthorne asked, going back to her wrist watch.

    "You and I are going to get her.  Tonight.  The plane leaves shortly and we should be in New York by morning."  Normally Hawthorne would stay here.  I rarely took anyone with me when I recruited.  But having Hawthorne there might prove valuable when I talked to her. 

    "I'm going?"  She asked surprised.

    "Yes.  You are going.  Go back a bag, enough clothes for a few days.  I have some recon to do before I talk to her.  "And it doesn't appear she has a name.  Not a real one anyhow," I finish.

    "So what does she have?" 

    "A letter."  I could never find her name.  There were no papers, no documents, nothing that could tell me what her parents might have called her when she was little, when they were still there.

    "A letter?  I have to call her by a letter?"  I know what she's thinking.  Where do find them?  The eccentric ones.  The different ones.  The ones who apparently only go by a letter.  I find them the same way I found her.  The same I find them all.  By looking hard.

    "Yes, a letter.  Her name is V."

Comment Log in or Join Tablo to comment on this chapter...

You might like Missy Quarles's other books...