Nick found Boris outside his office pacing the hallway. “Hello Boris.” “Thank you Mary, Nick come with me.” Boris pivoted at walked down the hallway at a determined pace, Nick fell into step beside him. “Where are we going?” “Situation room, I’ve got a team on this now, something is up and you’re hot, we don’t know why.” “Yeah, tell me about the heat, I barely made it out of the Metro.” “What?” Boris stopped in his tracks and turned to face Nick. “Who was it? Did you recognize anyone?” “No, I never got close enough. I got one fast look at the guy underground, and I thought I knew the face, but he was a good 200 yards away, so I couldn’t be sure.” “Let’s go.” Boris wheeled and set off down the hallway with Nick hustling to keep up.
Boris swiped his security card in a reader on the wall, then set his chin on a rest while his retina was scanned. The door skid back suddenly and Boris ushered Nick inside where within a circular bank of computers, monitors, sat four other agents 3 of whom who hardly looked up when they entered so intent were they on their monitors. The fourth rose and walked swiftly across the room to greet Boris. “What have we learned John?” “Not much so far, but we’re just starting. We reached out to every primary contact in Moscow to start listening on the street.” “What about Karnikov?” “We sent him over to the hotel, he’s “interviewing” the hotel clerk now. He’ll talk if he knows anything but he probably doesn’t know a thing.” John is a lean young Asian man who Nick estimates is thirty. Probably an MIT grad with a Ph.D. in cryptology or some arcane spy science. John appraises Nick Boris introduces him. “John this is Nick Serranto, it’s his girlfriend who was abducted in Moscow. Nick retired from the Agency a few years ago. You know the rest, what you don’t know is that Nick had a tail on the way over.” “Where did you see them?” “I saw them twice. First in the metro, one underground, another one up top at the exits. A black town car at the curb, couldn’t see if there was anyone else.” Boris interrupted, “You didn’t tell me you saw them twice.” “Boris You didn’t give me a chance before you bolted up the hallway! They bought the Tonic routine, the town car was across the street from Quigley’s by the time the taxi drove past.” “I wasn’t sure if you being cautious with that routine Nick. You haven’t gotten that rusty I guess.” “I opened the cell and it had a tracking bug in it, hard wired into the phone battery too, slick device.” “Naw, that’s old news now, probably old KGB junk,” John interjected, “The new stuff from China can’t even be found unless you’re an electrical engineer.” “Where’s the phone?” “I dialed the cable company where you’re on hold for hours and jammed it into the taxi seat. I figured they’d chase a yellow cab around.”
“John!” came from across the room. A young black woman peered out from behind her monitor, her face glowed in bluish light. “Come here, I’ve got something.” All three men skirted the inner circle of desks to form up behind the woman’s computer. “What is it Kara?” “Bad news…”