Now we had them. Nuclear armaments gone missing.
Why didn’t we get sent there to prevent this? It wasn’t time to start second-guessing our programs and it’s A. I.
Or maybe we should…
Regardless, the problem was that the reports said a seaplane took a nuclear torpedo up into Canada. At least one.
I could see both the seaplane docks not far away, and barely make out the Bremerton shipyards from here. The submarine base was near that.
Somehow, someone arranged this.
But what the hell was I going to do to solve that crime from up here? From the top of the Space Needle…
Since I couldn’t get down there quickly, I just had to figure out what I needed to figure out.
It was true – I couldn’t get there from here. Not way over to Canada in the time I had.
But when I did solve this mystery – or even if I didn’t – there might still be some collateral damage.
It all depended on how smart I could use the limited time I had.
Just 24 hours, with clues and witnesses vanishing every minute.
It was raining when I arrived. Like most Seattle residents, I had a wardrobe that prepared me for this.
So I put up the waterproof hood of my long over-shawl to cover most of my long, dark brown hair. And yet, it was good to feel the rain on my face.
I closed my eyes to enjoy it. Like it was washing something away. Anxiety, tenseness, uncertainty.
In the dark pre-dawn, I only dressed against what I knew the weather on average would be. I was glad I could find some jeans and sturdy hiking boots this time.
I saw the navigation lights near where I stood and was doubly glad.
Because I was on top of something where “slippery when wet” took on a double warning.
And forced deep regular breaths in to my lungs in order to slow my racing heart.
It’s not every day you get a chance to slip off a 600 foot building shaped like a flying saucer.
The view on the way down would be spectacular, if that was any consolation.
But my job was to find a safer way to get down, like the elevator.
The real question bugging me, though – was how did I get here?
– – – –
Our breakfast date was quite early. Because we had to steal some time away from our regular schedule. I was woken to someone knocking at the front door of my apartment.
It turned out to be Finn – my brother, protector, and partner in crime-solving.
“Good morning, Erotika Jones.” His smiling face was topped by his irrepressible red hair. Today he was in a simple raincoat, oddly dry even with the rain pelting the apartment windows.
“Good morning, Finn. Won’t you come in?”
We both almost laughed at that. Because Finn had to leave my apartment before he could knock to be let back in.
But since I borrowed the bodies I used for our assignments, there was no use in taking the chance I would get freaked out by her memories before my programming could take over.
That was the use of the code words “Erotika” to trigger the project we were under, and “Jones” was my own last name. Once I heard those, my own memories came in as a layer over this body’s. Then everything was fine – for the next 24 hours or so.
And that is all I had to solve the mystery at hand – all while the clues disappeared and the witnesses forgot what they’d experienced.
All that data came back to me. In that flash of understanding…
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