Quest - Chapter 13
Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Terrorists on Earth attack the Ball. Quest's crew are determined to ruin the bad guys day.


Disclaimer: Joss, Fox, Universal Own em’. I’m just playing. No money being made. The situations come from my own twisted mind as do my original characters.



Quest-Chapter Thirteen


Screams echoed across the ballroom as the first shots rang out. Nine of the fifteen Secret Service officers died in the first volley of shots. Three more had seen their assailants draw weapons and called out a warning. Two tackled League Vice President Blackwell and President Augustine to the floor.

As the guests dove for cover, eight people did not.

Clay shoved Becca to the floor and drew his pistol, shooting one of the gunmen in the chest from several feet away. As that man fell, Lt. Commander Viki Baxter scooped up the man's fallen weapon and turned it on another waiter armed with a gun. Felling him instantly.

Sara and Jeff stood back to back and began picking off the gunmen who now realized that there were wolves among the sheep. Having thought that they were safe after taking care of the guard dogs.

Allan and Zoë were next to ad their bullets to the fray. They both dropped a gunman apiece before having to take cover themselves. A wounded secret service agent slid General Reed his gun before passing out. Taking it, the General quickly put a bullet between the eyes of one of the waiters turned terrorist.

Commander Olsen simply punched a terrorist who was busy trying to shoot one of the remaining Secret Service agents. Stunned by the punch, the man dropped his gun. Disarmed, Cordell simply scooped up the weapon and shot the previous owner in the chest.

Down to less than half their original number, one of the terrorists began calling into a small com unit.

“Dad! He's calling for backup!” Sara yelled as the engineer dropped another of the gunmen before having to duck for cover.

The men, Sara noted were all Asian and seemed to be speaking Mandarin. She smiled to herself slightly. Realizing that the bad guys probably thought that no one in the room would be fluent in the language.

That mistake would cost them dearly.


Unknown to the surviving Secret Service agents and the crew of the Quest, a large unmarked aircraft had landed on the roof of the hotel.

A type unknown in the current day back in the 'Verse. Helicopters were still in use on Earth.

As the craft idled on the roof, another fifteen armed men, dressed in tactical gear debarked and headed for the roof stairwell to back up their fellows in the ballroom.

All over the roof lay the bodies of the murdered Secret Service counter sniper and anti-aircraft team.

The leader of the attackers paused as the sound of two thunderclaps echoed across the city. There wasn't a cloud in the sky.


“What's that on the roof?” Luigi called over the com to Rachel in the other gunship.

“I think it's helicopter,” the teenager replied, “Uncle Allan knows how to fly one.”

“Secret Service Command Post to Alliance spacecraft,” crackled a voice across the ship to ship com.

“This is Raptor Lead, Lieutenant Coletti. Go, Command Post,.”

“Aircraft on the roof is not a friendly, Rooftop teams are down, there's a firefight in the ballroom. Additional troops are enroute. ETA, ten minutes.”

“Copy that,” the young Lieutenant replied.

“Luigi... I've got an idea,” Rachel called over the com.


The terrorists tasked to guard the helicopter gasped in shock when the two gunships dropped from the sky and pulled into a hover a hundred feet from the pad. In the moment of surprise, Rachel locked onto the chopper's engines and fired a quick pulse from the ASREV's forward laser.

In a shower of sparks and molten metal, the laser melted through the thin aluminum of the aircraft's skin and through the engines themselves. The aircraft shook violently as the rotor blades spun to a quick stop due to the melting of the helicopters transmission.

Recovering from their shock, the gunmen started to fire their weapons at the two hovering fighters. The small caliber bullets bounced harmlessly off the armored hulls of the Gunships.

Luigi placed his targeting reticle on the two men shooting at them and simply obliterated them with the turret mounted rail gun under his ships nose.

The two pilots were still strapped into their seats. Too afraid to try and run for it with the two ships still hovering at the edge of the roof.

While Rachel covered. Luigi pulled his ASREV into a hover over the damaged helicopter. With the touch of a button, three grapples fired from the bottom of the ship. Embedding themselves in the airframe of the now ruined helicopter.

Suddenly realizing what was about to happen, the pilots tried to escape but a burst of gunfire from Rachel's rail gun kept them in their seats.

With a burst of engine power, Luigi lifted his craft into the air with the errant helicopter dangling from the grapples.

The grapples were designed for either latching onto derelict ships or to attach the ASREV to a celestial body like an asteroid where there wasn't enough gravity to hold the ship down.

They also made an excellent, makeshift lifting system.

Rosie grinned from her seat next to Rachel as Luigi flew the short distance to the St. Lawrence river and released the grapples.

What was left of the helicopter exploded as it hit the water after the nearly five hundred foot drop.

Rachel moved her ASREV to the roof and landed. A minute later, Luigi was able to hover over the edge of the building, allowing Joe Park and Owen Son to jump to the roof, joining the waiting Roseanne and Rachel.

Heavily armed, the Quest crew members headed into the the hotel.


“Shit!” Allan swore as he ducked down behind the overturned buffet table. Just as they thought they had the upper hand, fifteen more heavily armed men burst into the ballroom. Most of the party goers had been able to escape but those wounded or not near a door were trapped.

Armed with only handguns and salvaged weapons from the terrorists, the defenders were heavily out gunned.

General Reed was screaming into his personal com, calling for reinforcements. At the moment, the fight had herded the Quest crew, Ambassador Wu, League President Augustine, Reed and the last two uninjured Secret Service agents.

As they hunkered down, a heavily accented voice called out:

“There is no place to run! You have no escape!”

“What do you want?” called out President Augustine. Zoë shushed the man.

“Why you, Mr. President. Along with Vice President Blackwell. To stand trial for crimes against the Sinic peoples!”

Allan looked at General Reed, “Dan?” he whispered.

“Sinic Liberation Front,” the General whispered, “Terrorist group from mainland China. Been screaming about the unjust treatment the surviving Chinese people have received ever since the League formed.”

“Swell,” Allan growled quietly.

“Now come out before I am forced to kill this young man and woman.”

Allan glanced through a bullet hole in the tabletop and swore. The terrorists held Becca and Clay at gunpoint. It looked like Clay had been shot in the arm. Blood was dripping from his fingers onto the floor.

Allan looked back, “They got Clay and Becca.”

Sara gasped, she suddenly realized she had lost track of the couple when the firefight had gotten heavy. Jeff just growled.

“How many?” Lt. Commander Baxter asked.

“About eighteen,” Allan replied.

“You have thirty seconds...” called out the terrorist leader.

“How many rounds?” Commander Olsen asked.

“Three,” said Zoë.

“I'm out,” replied Baxter.

“Six, said Jeff.

“Four I think,” said the General.

“I got five,” Allan said.

“Same,” Cordell replied, “What's the plan.”

“We must protect the President and Vice President,” the lead Secret Service agent said.

“It's also my niece and her fiancé out there,” Allan growled.

“It's our duty...”

“Shut up or I'll shoot you myself,” Zoë snapped at the man. The look on her face told him that she meant every word.

“Fifteen seconds...”

“Hang on! We're coming out!” Allan yelled.

“Baby?” Zoë asked.

“Just me at first.”



“Trust me... I've got an idea.”


Robert Chan was slowly running out of patience. His men were angry at the loss of many of their fellows and wanted revenge. So did he, but as a leader, he needed to keep his remaining men under control.

Slowly an old man stood from behind the table, a pistol in his hand, held in the air. Carefully, he laid the pistol on the floor.

“The rest... Now!” Chan ordered.

“In a minute,” the old man replied.

Chan looked confused, “I will kill them.”

“And I will kill you with my bare hands if you do,” the old man replied, “You are holding my niece and her fiancé.”

Chan snorted, “Who are you old man?”

“Allan Bryant.”

Chan's face changed to shock for a moment as he recognized who Allan was. A smile broke out on his face, “Ah... yes. The so called 'Savior' of mankind.”

“Some have said that,” Allan replied.

“Saviors can die.” Chan said as he quickly raised his pistol and fired. The bullet struck Allan in the chest.

With a grunt, he fell to the floor while Clay yelled and Becca screamed.

It was just the distraction they needed.

Four hundred years is a long time. In that time, firearms had come a long way. Particularly the weapons made by the Callahan company. Second only to Blue Sun as an arms manufacturer, their auto lock assault rifle was the best firearm made by man.

Especially when wielded by three former Alliance special forces troopers who were also crew members of Quest.

Roseanne, Owen and Joseph tore into the terrorists from the rear like a tidal wave. At their side was a tornado named Rachel Cobb.

Rachel had always been a small girl growing up. Most attributed that to her parentage. Being the daughter of River Tam, she had the body of a dancer.

And the right cross of her father, Jayne Cobb.

Rachel had two inches and twenty pounds on her mother. Taught from a young age, both Ballet and nearly every martial arts form known to man. This combined with her powerful reading skills, the only person who was more dangerous in close quarters combat than River...

Was her daughter.

Rachel tore into the gunmen who held her cousin hostage with a vengeance. Her silenced pistol took out three before they even knew they were under attack. The girl danced among the gunmen, her pistol in one hand and the katana given her by her mother in the other, the assailants began to fall.

As the terrorists realized they were under attack, Becca stomped down on the man holding her with her three inch spiked heel and dropped to the floor out of the line of fire.

The man holding Clay was distracted by what had happened to his partner holding Becca and shifted his grip. Despite the pain in his arm, Clay elbowed the man in the face, breaking his nose. Twisting from the gunman's grip after it loosened, the young engineer, kicked him in the crotch.

Another of the terrorists tried to take a bead on Clay. But just as the man's gun began to aim, the back of his head exploded from the passage of a .45 caliber bullet fired from Allan's pistol.

The bullet that had struck Allan had been stopped by the ultra thin body armor he wore under his tux. It had hurt like hell and Allan knew he would have a bruise there in the morning.

The terrorists thought that their body armor would help protect them but the Callahan rounds fired from the three Quest security officers penetrated their old fashioned Kevlar and ceramic vests like so much tissue paper. Only after penetrating their frontal armor and then their bodies did the round become embedded in the rear of the vests.

Of course this didn't help the men waring the armor all that much.

When the firing began from the rear, Zoë, Sara, Jeff, General Reed and Commander Olsen added their shots to the fight.

In seconds it was over.

“Clear!” shouted Owen.

“Clear!” replied Joseph.

“All clear!” finished Rosanne.

With a sigh, Allan slumped back against the table. He was definitely too old for this shit.


With the fight over, Luigi landed his ASREV in the middle of a convenient intersection that had been cordoned off by the local police. Bystanders used to conventional aircraft and helicopters gawked at the craft. To the average citizen of twenty sixth century Earth. A ship like an ASREV was something from science fiction.

Dressed in his flight suit and wearing his sidearm, Luigi passed through the police line and headed for the hotel ballroom.

“Tai-kong suo-yo duh shing-chiouh doh sai-jin wuh duh pee-goo...” The pilot said as he laid his eyes on the carnage of the ballroom.

Bodies lay all over and Paramedics were tending to the wounded. Including Clay and a protesting Allan.

“Got that right, Luigi” Vicky Baxter said to her fellow pilot, “You didn't break my ASREV, did you?”

“Nope,” the Lieutenant grinned, “ I had the Commander's bird. Rachel flew yours...”


In the aftermath of the fight, Clay was loaded onto the ASREV parked on the roof and Lt. Commander Baxter flew him and Becca along with Roseanne back to Quest.

Secretary Pace was slightly wounded in the exchange and Trudy accompanied him to the hospital. The two diplomats had found common ground in that they had both lost their spouses to accidents. They had been spending a great deal of time together.

Rachel remained on the ground to help interrogate the prisoners. Not that they knew they were being interrogated. The eighteen year old simply took a stroll through their minds.

When she had finished, She drew Allan, Zoë and Sara aside. “Know where their local base is. Also the main training camp outside what was once Beijing.”

“How are we going to tell the locals about this?” Sara asked.

“Depends,” Zoë said, “Do we tell them about what Rachel can do?”

“That's up to Rachel,” Allan said as he gazed at the girl who looked so much like her mother.

“We'll tell them...” Rachel stated.


“Dr. Bryant... I cannot express my gratitude for your assistance in resolving this crisis,” said Jacques Augustine. President of the League of Nations.

“Indeed... Thank you Allan,” added League Vice President and Republic of North America President, Janice Blackwell.

“Thank you, Mr. President... Janice,” the engineer replied. He and Zoë had become friends with the Republic's President.

“And you, Miss Cobb,” President Augustine continued, “I... I have never seen anyone fight like you in my life.”

“There's a reason for that, Mr. President,” the eighteen year old genius replied, “We need to sit down for a little chat.”


“You must be joking,” stated President Augustine.

“It's all true,” Zoë replied.

“Telepathy?” General Reed said in amazement.

Rachel nodded and took on the air of someone much older than herself as she spoke, “It is a very rare genetic mutation. Prevalent mostly in females. Occurring in about one out of eight hundred million. A bit over one in a billion for males.”

“The mutation doesn't just manifest itself as telepathy,” Allan interjected, “It can also take the form of what is loosely termed, Technopathy. An almost instinctual rapport with machinery. The ability to almost hear what is wrong with a machine and quickly repair it.”

“I have that ability to a slight degree,” Allan continued, “So does my daughter. And Rebecca Tam.”

“All the individuals seen thus far,” Rachel said, “Are highly intelligent. My Mother has the second highest IQ ever recorded in history since the Exodus. She is also what we call a Reader.”

“As is Rachel,” Sara interjected, “The... trait. Has about a one in three chance of being passed down. I got lucky and inherited some of my Father's ability with machines. Rachel is actually more sensitive than her Mother is in natural ability. But due to the experimentation done by the Alliance done to Aunt River, she is slightly stronger but...”

“Mom was crazy for a long time,” Rachel said with a sad smile, “She can get overwhelmed in large crowd situations. The experiments removed her natural shields to make her stronger.”

“You said one in three can inherit the... gift.” Janice Blackwell asked.

“My little brother takes after my Dad,” Rachel said with a smile, “He's smarter than Daddy, thanks to Mom's genetics, but he's not quite the genius Mom and I are.”

“Spoken like a true big sister,” Zoë said with a grin, breaking some of the tension in the room.

“So.. conceivably, there might be a... reader somewhere on Earth right now?” General Reed asked.

“The odds are against it, Dan,” Allan replied, “The Earth population just broke a billion. It also seems to be a family trait. I'm quite convinced one of my aunt's was a reader. My cousins and I could never get away with anything when she was around. I got the mechanical gift, and passed that down to Sara. Becca's Mother passed her much stronger Technopathic abilities down to Rebecca. Rachel got the luck of the draw and is a Reader.”

“There seems to have been a 'cluster' of these abilities that appeared between forty five and thirty years ago on our side of the Verse. Not sure what caused it other then blind chance. But so far, there have been very few occurrences of these kind of 'mutations',” Allan finished.

“Right now there are three known living readers besides myself and my Mother,” Rachel added, “All three are the only survivors of the so called, 'Academy'. The lab that experimented on my Mother. One is a true reader like Mom. The other two are fraternal twins who can only read each other. The rest of the Academy students were either killed by the experiments or in the course of being used as active agents for the government.”

“Agents?” President Augustine asked.

Zoë nodded, “You need to remember. None of these people volunteered for this. They were tricked by the government. Experimented on. Forced to become trained killers. Brainwashed, mental triggers, the mutilation of parts of their brains. All done in secret. None older than fifteen.”

“Fifteen?” Dan Reed breathed.

“Kids,” Allan said with some vehemence in his voice, “All of them were kids. Started in on Rachel's mother at fourteen. River should have been the next Einstein or Hawking. Instead she spent her teen years either being experimented on or running for her life from the government or other agents. The part that really ticks me off is that my own company ran the Academy for the Alliance. Now River teaches high school art and dance.”

“And raised an incredibly talented and beautiful daughter,” Janice Blackwell added, “My dear, Be assured that if someone of your... talents comes to light. I will do my utmost to see that they are left alone.”

“I know,” Rachel smiled, “I can see that in all of your minds. You are good people.”

“Thank you for saying, young lady,” President Augustine replied with a slight touch of nervousness in his voice, “But why are you telling us all this?”

“So you will believe us when we tell you I know where the Sinic Liberation Front has it's local headquarters and where their leadership is hiding,” Rachel said with a grin.

“You read it from their minds?” General Reed asked.

“Easily. And I know there is also a mole in the League administration. It seems the leader of this operation tonight was the number three man in the organization. I just need more time with him to ascertain the necessary information.”

“It will be some hours before he is out of surgery,” Janice replied.

“I can wait,” Rachel said with a smile.




Monday, October 26, 2009 12:43 AM


good to know that the people at the party where good people(except for the BG´s) but on the other hand Rachel Cobb could have reached out a hand, and said except that man/woman, he/she would not mind doing the same to anyone, as the academy did to my mother, get her away from me.

More, MORE!!!! love it, is there going to be more to the Guardian story? or a continuation of it????

Monday, October 26, 2009 5:17 AM


As always, I am liking it and need more. I have always loved all your OCs.


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