randoms ii

He must have known this day would come. Perhaps he wanted to be caught? Certain irregularities in his behaviour had been revealed; it began with task-sheets incomplete, unscheduled travels under the dark, it ended with one too many rebels escaping from our nets.

When I find Widow Brin, when he has at last stopped running, he is in a dank and dismal top floor room at an end-of-the-line hotel.

He waits at a table topped with brittle ancient plastic. A breeze from the open window flutters thin and dirty curtains. Brin’s personal issue weapon is on the table in front of him. He does not move as I step into the room. I aim my own pistol at his head as I approach.

I reach out mind-to-mind and he resists the pressure, fights the intrusion, but there behind the barriers I sense the fatal spark of infection. A sliver of fracture/light that twists inside Brin’s brain. A subtle seed of evil.

“Don’t save me,” he says.

He reaches for his gun.

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