Halo of Flies

Flames curled round the letter’s edge, its message vanishing in the fire. I felt like skipping through the rain, but that would be breaking character. There will surely be time for celebration later. I need to be over the horizon before sunrise.


“Vladimir, your orders are to pick up Doctor Furnier at the docks and escort him to the Ambassador’s office. He’s the American V.I.P. we’ve been expecting, the strategic submarine expert. Make sure you verify his papers, provide any refreshment he might need. Take an umbrella, looks like inclement weather is blowing in tonight.”


I motored along the keel of the massive submarine, towed by a noiseless electric bladefish motor. Finding the intake ports, I planted the time bomb on the keel exactly between them. A sizable explosion, under pressure conditions, and the sub would fold up and sink almost instantly. I set the timer for twelve hours and headed up the dock.


While packing for Monaco, I thumb through “Dr. Furnier’s” passport and travel documents. They are superb, some of my best work. Entirely counterfeit, like the schematics and MHD engine blueprints I sold to the Ambassador. I heft the heavy briefcase containing my payment in gold and toss the good doctor’s papers into the fireplace.

Mei Ling’s corpse is lying in a pool of blood by the bar, dagger on the carpet near her petite hand. She was a clever agent, especially with concealing weapons, but not clever enough.

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Inspired by this week’s Finish That Thought prompt. And by the song, (thank you Mr. Furnier).