003. Reading Matter

Exter never went in cold – that was the kind of mistake that rookies made. If you didn’t know the basic lay of the land you weren’t going to be able to spot anything out of the ordinary. These Fiction Department bastards were selected out for their ability to lie, so their was no telling how much subterfuge was going to be involved. Either that or he’d be some puffed up blowhard with an over-exaggerated sense of his own sense of importance in the scheme of things. Weren’t many who had any real fieldcraft; he didn’t envisage much trouble.

Exter had neutralised more threats than most. He was a cold fish to be sure. Businesslike shot through the head was his trademark – nothing fancy; no fingerprints or signatures … this was work.

No one liked him and he cultivated that; he’s deep-sixed two ex-girlfriends who had turned state’s evidence and threatened the sanctity of several deep pockets he’d created to bankroll some black ops he’d been tasked with running. Only connect – Forster would have made an awful spy … great data analyst, but awful spy.

Weston’s file was kind of interesting – he wasn’t a bad writer; not that Exter was any kind of judge. He had been liked, but he had never been what one might call showy, or looking to impress anyone and advance beyond the lowly position he managed to occupy for the majority of his career with the department.

Weston wasn’t impressive – he was anonymous. He had kept quiet for so long, so why cause trouble now? Something had to be applying unusual pressure to him, or rather, someone was using something to apply unusual pressure to him. The fact that said pressure could be applied meant that Weston was a liability, so he would have to be taken care of. Not before they found the person applying that pressure though.

Exter was glad that he had little to do with the internal workins of the Fact and Fiction Department – he liked it simple; he had been trained to be a good weapon – he was not unquestioning – but when he was told to strike he struck. He had had a long career. For what he knew, in the line of work he was in, was he likely to live long and die peacefully? Probably not. But he would die doing what he was good at, or, if he failed that, he would die pretty soon after.

Weston, Weston, Weston. This could only end one way.


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