Chapter 32 The trigger

“The Sargent said the old man complained the last woman didn't have much life in her. He wants this one to have some fight and will last for a while,” said Zeleck absently fingering the grip of his stunner. “How about that one,” said Tomac pointing across the square at a woman arguing with a red-faced drunk and shoving his hands away from her breasts. “No coins, no service,” yells the woman. “I'd make short work of that one.” said Zelek. “That why all the women call you short Zelek. She'll do. I'll get the transport carriage, you take her down. Stun the drunk too, so he doesn't make a scene,” orders Tomac.

“We may have a problem,” said Celeste changing the vid to an aerial view of the capitol. Ben studied the screen. “All the red dots are coin holders I take it.” “Yes, but look at this one,” as the screen zoomed in. “That's the security forces compound. It could be a woman who is cleaning,” said Ben “That's what I thought at first, but she didn't move at all for three hours. Now she is moving towards the Cathedral.” The red dot moves through the wall gate, and stops at the side of the Cathedral. “What's there?” asked Ben. “It's a side door that's barred from the inside.” The red dot moves into the Cathedral and is joined by a blue dot. “I have a sick feeling about this Ben, the blue dot is Davin,” said Celeste as she changed the vid view to the Sacred Chamber.

A few minutes later the door opens. Davin rolls the crate into the center of the room, locks the door and puts the key in his pocket. Taking his stunner out of his pocket he pulls the latch pin from the crate door and takes several quick steps back. The crate door crashes open, a woman launches out at Davin who pulls the trigger, and the woman collapses to the floor. “Is there anything we can do Celeste?” “Maybe if we get a lot of luck, let's just watch for the moment.” With a satisfied look on his face, Davin sets his stunner on the table, looks at the bed, and then over to the wall with the shackles. Making up his mind up he grabs the woman's arm, drags her over to the bed and rolls her onto it. Walking back towards the table Davin starts to take off his pendant and the lights go out leaving the windowless room pitch black. The camera view switches to infrared.

“This is where we need some luck,” mutters Celeste under her breath. Davin, waving his hands out in front of him takes a couple of tentative small steps and stops. He turns, takes a couple more steps and reaches out with his hands finding nothing. “I'm going to try to spook him with the little drone Ben.” Ben watched as the vid's view suddenly zooms in on Davin's face as the drone's wings give his cheek a small glancing tickle. Davin's hands flail at his face in a panic, and he jumps backward. The droned sweeps back in and brushes against Davin's ear causing him to screech and frantically wave his hands around his face. Ben sees the back of Davin's neck as the drone makes another pass. Davin jumps forward while scrambling to reach back of his neck, his feet hit the edge of the bed, and he falls hard hitting his head on the stone wall and lays still. The drone hovers over the young woman. “She's starting to come around Ben. The drone has a tiny red light it's bright enough to see it, but it won't provide any real illumination unless it's really close to something. Let's see if we can get her out of there.”

Tay's eyes open and sees a tiny red light making a small circle above her. Sitting up the light moves off to the side of the bed and circles. She finds the edge of the bed with her hands, swings her feet to the floor and stands. The light moves a few feet away at an angle and Tay takes a couple of steps towards it. The light moves again about five feet away and hovers a bit lower. Tay shuffles over to the light and sees the stunner directly under it. She picks it up, and the light moves in a straight line and hovers just off the floor. In small steps, she heads towards the light. It starts blinking over Davin's head. Without hesitation, she points the stunner at Davin's head and pulls the trigger several times. The light moves to Davin's robe pocket and blinks. Reaching into the robe pocket she finds a key and takes it. Following the light, it leads her to the lock. She unlocks the door, slowly pushes it open, and peers out into the darkened hallway. The red light moves out into the hall and starts to blink on the other side of the lock. Tay smiles and understands. The door pushes closed, the lock turns, and the key drops into her pocket. The light moves down the hall to a stairway and blinks until she starts down the stairs. She stops for a second and quietly whispers, “Thank you little light,” and takes the stairs down two at a time heading for the main entrance. The drone climbs up into a ceiling corner and parks itself pointed at Sacred Chamber door.

Ben and Celeste watch Tay's blinking dot until it passes through the Cathedral main gate and enters the market square. Ben exhales and slumps back. “That was incredible Celeste.” Turning to face Ben Celeste said, “To be honest I was scared to death. Anything could have gone wrong, and if it did the result would have been the young woman's death. I'm not perfect.” “I'm not either Celeste, but together we are more perfect than apart.” “Thank you, Ben, I agree. I also think it time to pull the trigger.” “What do you have in mind? Celeste”

“I think it's going to take some time to get Davin out of the Sacred Chamber. The walls are very thick and the metal door is massive. The guards that helped him with the crate will know he went into the chamber, and when he doesn't appear tomorrow the other Elder's will think something is awry. Most will be hopeful that he died in there.”

“This can be a good thing, Celeste. There are only two scenarios. The first is he is dead, and a fight over succession will occur creating plenty of disorder. The second is he's alive and will still be in control. Davin will be able to tell that they are trying to get him out and any evidence of his behavior in the room will be shoved into that shaft. He'll make up a story along the lines that someone had a second key, came in took his key, stole the Sacred Book and locked him in. He will also be one angry Senior Elder who won't be sure about exactly what happened and will lash out everywhere at everything including us. It's been a long day. I'm ready for a glass of wine and something to eat. I think we should have an early night and deal with the details in the morning.”

Celeste stayed awake little later than Ben. As she climbs into bed Ben senses her presence and slowly opens his eyes. She gives him a shy smile as she lays facing Ben, watching him looking at her. She slowly closes her eyes and rests.