Part 27

Jun. 16th, 2006 08:40 pm
[identity profile] posting in [community profile] if_i_trace
Make sure you've read Part 26 before you read this!


Sometimes, you can't bury the past fast enough...


The faint flash of lights caught Tamsin's attention in the darkness between cars passing. Turning around, he walked backwards a few paces, searching for the source.

Cop car.

He turned again, fingers fumbling over the familiar latches on his laptop case. He pulled it out, still walking but angling down into the ditch now, and flicked the power switch. There was a culvert just ahead, draining down into a nearby river. Not enough water here to carry much, but....

The lights danced brighter. He double-clicked a desktop icon and shut the case again while the laptop hard drive whirred to life and began a deep level format. He was almost in the culvert now, shrugging his bags down off his shoulders and into the shallow water. The laptop he set aside, in a thick patch of dry grass that would hide it from a casual glance at least.

Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out his cell phone, popped the GSM card out and chucked it as far as he could. Even before hearing the faint splash, he was digging out the flash drives, scattering them into the water as well.

The lights flashed in blinding streaks, the source obviously stopped on the road just above him.

There was still his PC hard drive. Car doors slammed -- two, which meant more than one cop. Digging into the bag, his fingers curled around the anti-static bag and he shook the drive free. A spotlight cut a swath across the grass as he plunged the drive down into the water, burying it in the mud and the muck of the culvert bed.

"Police," a man's voice said. "Put your hands above your head and step into the light. Slowly."

Grim, hysterical laughter tightened Tamsin's throat as he complied. This was so completely and utterly ridiculous. He'd probably just screwed himself over by acting like a criminal instead of just walking along like he belonged there. But panic was clawing at him, distracting his logic into broken circles that rendered him incompetent.

"I'm not armed!" he said, because he wasn't, and he really didn't want to be mistaken for the dangerous type of criminal.

"Keep your hands where I can see them," was the only response.

The spotlight was blinding, illuminating the grassy slope in stark detail. Tamsin squinted, lowering one hand a little to shade his eyes. The human shape off to his left slightly would be the cop, presumably. But another figure was coming toward him, moving quickly just on the edge of the spotlight's beam, and he thought --


Oh, no.

Not again....


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Imperfect Likeness

July 2010

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