Lockdown - 05 by Alexander Shaw

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SUMMARY: For anyone who was reading these in order, this story was previously called 'The Neutral 3 Incident', has been changed to 'Lockdown'. Thanks!

Chapter 5 Elevator 519DPK.

--/Day 3 16:05 Hours/--
--/Elevator 519DPK Interior/--

"I think it's stuck." Tenzanin said helpfully. Davan looked back at him and gave him a withering glare, one normally reserved for children who had done bad things. They'd been stuck in this elevator for nearly an hour now. The maintenance line had been most unhelpful.

"Well good thing we have you here to point it out to us." Davan sighed. The three of them were sat around in different corners of the elevator, simply waiting.

"What if you could get to the roof, could you fix it?" Torn asked nervously. Davan looked at him for a second, then nodded slowly, reaching for his tool kit.

"Can't hurt to try, I guess." He said, rising to his feet. "Give me a leg will you two?" Both Torn and Tenzanin clambered to standing, then formed handholds for the wiry Tayan. Supporting him upwards, he reached the access vent and pushed it aside. Then he grabbed the edges of the hole it had made and hauled himself out into the shaft.

--/+0 minutes 12 seconds/--
--/Commander Sorrell's Personal Estate/--

"Everything is arranged?" The middleman asked, sat as customary, face hidden in shadows. Sorrell smiled at him, that most predatory of gestures. He was well aware of who the middleman was, where he slept and whom he fucked, but he enjoyed the pretence.

"Everything is acceptable to me, I didn't like Youren anyway." Sorrell said finally. "But one thing concerns me. What if, not that I am suggesting to you that Wren will fail, that is unthinkable, but why use the Nethrek I want dead for the task?" He asked.

"Retaliation is an exact art, Commander. We must adhere to the rules." The middleman replied.

--/+2 minutes/--
--/Elevator 519DPK Roof/--

It was good workmanship, that was for certain. The arrowhead shaped wedge that had attached itself to the traction rollers was pretty specific stuff, designed to fling itself out from a shaft mounted unit to halt this elevator and this elevator only. Davan reached out to grab it, slipping his probe-rods back into his toolkit. Before his hand made contact, the roof vent he'd come up through whirred into life and snapped shut. What the hell?

A second later there was a shape shooting out of the roof, a transparent Standard form. Davan blinked, unbelieving, reaching for one of the guns he kept in his tool kit and pulling it free. He whipped it round to point it at the shape, seeing that it had solidified. Davan's jaw almost dropped, but he contained himself, swinging the aim of the gun away, now to the roof vent. Beside him, Torn crouched down against the shaft wall, trying not to be noticed.

--/+0 minutes 0 seconds/--
--/Elevator 519DPK Interior/--

Tenzanin leapt up, moving faster than should have been possible, jamming the knife that suddenly appeared in his hand into the gap of the roof vent, feeling the hatch slam into it. Thanks to the blade wedged there now, there was a sliver of a gap left. Tenzanin dropped to the floor, gun already in hand. He turned his head to bark an order at Torn, but the young Nethrek had simply disappeared.

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