London was awakening to a damp and gloomy day. The air coming in the room was so heavy with humidity that it became difficult to breathe. It was under such conditions that Richard Maxwell walked to the corner of the vacant room and looked out the window. The city was covered with a mist that caused the street to look eerie.
Dropping to one knee, he set his bag down and unzipped it. Emptying the contents, he laid them out on the carpet floor in a precise manner. In under a minute, he assembled his rifle and placed a bullet in the chamber. Then, pointing the rifle towards the window, he eased his right eye in behind the scope and rotated it into focus.
He stared down at the front entrance to the House of Parliament.
Two blocks away.
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One of the Detectives from the Scotland Yard Criminal Investigation Department stepped out of the elevator, turned left at the hallway and followed one of the Guards from the Parliament Security details. The hall was furnished with dark red carpeting, orchid and lilies that flowed out of brown ceramic pots and oversized crystal chandeliers dangling from the ceiling. There were two Sentries from the Coldstream Guards posted by a dark wooden door to their right, preventing the passage of unauthorized personnel.
She noticed they were dressed with an oversized military headdress made of black fur and a red uniform with gold buttons. The sight of them almost made her smile, but she thought otherwise as they displayed their rifles. The building was silent except for the hum of the giant ventilation system. The Guard that she was following knocked on the door and glanced at her as she stopped beside him. He observed her frame. She was shorter than him, and she had the body of a runner.
They heard the dead bolt lock slide back with a heavy thunk, causing the Guard to return his attention to the door and stare straight ahead; with a face that betrayed no signs of emotions.
The air conditioning was set to high and the air in the room was freezing, causing the Detective to shiver as she walked inside.
Ugh, I should have brought my blazer. She thought while rubbing her arms.
Her sandy brown hair was pulled back in a ponytail. She was wearing a white blouse, short black skirt and black heels. Her C.I.D. Detective shield hung between her breasts from a necklace around her neck. She observed that the room was relatively spacious. It had a long table with ten chairs, gray synthetic carpet, and white tile overhead. Bright halogen lights illuminated inside.
There was another man in the room. He had his back to her, and he was looking down at the object on top of the table. He was wearing a black suit and pants. He had the tell-tale earpiece of the secret service in his ear. The guard from the Parliament Security detail walked around the table and stood face—to—face with them. He observed that the woman he brought in the room was still and silent. She took a step closer to the table. A strand of hair fell to the side of her face as she studied a single sheet of paper that was on top of the table. The words were printed in Italics oversized Lucida dark fonts: The Prime Minister is targeted for elimination, and he will be assassinated.
She felt her heart beat quickening. She glanced up while pulling the strand of hair from the side of her face to behind her ear.
“When did this come through?”
The guard from the Parliament Security detail furrowed his eyebrows in concentration and glanced at his wristwatch.
“It was found one hour and a half ago.”
“You found it just like this, on top of this table?”
“No, it came in through the Fax machine, next door over—in the Prime Minister Secretary’s Office.” He explained. “She is the one who found it.”
The C.I.D. Detective looked around, and then returned her attention to the guard. “Where is the Prime Minister’s Secretary?”
“We have an Agent escorting her to the bathroom, she will return shortly.”
The woman looked down at the paper again. The Prime Minister is targeted for elimination, and he will be assassinated. As she continued to read the phrase over and over again, the smooth and shiny gloss of the table reflected their images. She suddenly turned her head as she heard a sound coming from behind them.
It was the Prime Minister’s Secretary. She entered the room while crying and waving her cellular.
“I’ve tried everything to get in touch with him. His cell phone just keeps ringing, and I used a secured line to call his house and no one picked it up either. I’m scared.”
The Agent pulled a chair for her and she sat down. The C.I.D Detective looked at the Secretary and watched her sitting down. She decided to wait before asking any questions.
She would sob oneself to sleep right now anyways.
She shot a glance at the Secret Service Agent and saw him speaking on his wrist microphone. He was getting in contact with an Agent named Fox, and he was asking him to go check the Prime Minister’s house.
The Security Detail Agents at the Prime Minister’s house are not responding either?
She found that to be very strange.
She returned her attention to the guard from the Parliament Security detail with a puzzled look on her face.
What is going on?