All eyes and ears were on Gary as he started to bring everyone up to speed on the ‘why’ that he and April were at Kings Bay. “About three and half years ago, my wife, daughter and unborn baby were murdered…” The pregnant couple Jack and Lauren, like most pregnant couples think about the future birth of their baby so the mention of a murdered baby sent chills down the spine of both of them. “…the police also tried to kill me as well.” Gary paused “As you might imagine, I didn’t take too kindly to that and started to fight back, along with others who were having the same things happen to them. We started fighting in Baltimore…and it soon became a full fledged rebellion, which grew exponentially as the government came up with new laws…and signed treaties…that militarized the police and legalized their murdering of anyone that didn’t that didn’t go along with them.”
“So, you are a terrorist, right?” Rob asked
“Correct.” Gary said matter of fact “Although we look at ourselves as Patriots or Freedom Fighters…our goal is the same goal that the Founding Fathers had. We want nothing more than to have a country where we can live in peace without tyranny.” Gary paused “I don’t want to get into a political discourse right now; I just want to bring you up to speed, alright?”
Rob and Jack nodded yes
“So, this “Rebellion” grew and the local government was caught really off guard, as they thought that it would be like any other time; where when they made an edict; the people would just be like sheep and follow along. The police also started to also rebel as they were going into situations where they were getting killed. You know, kind of like the guy who signs up for military service and when he is sent to war, all of a sudden says “Hey, this isn’t what I signed up for…I just want college money” So, this movement started growing all across the country…and we moved our fight from Baltimore to DC. We were trying to get the rats out of the corn crib so to speak.”
Rob and Jack had a stern look on their faces as they were sitting in the company of a confirmed terrorist…someone they were led to believe were murderous thugs and were diametrically opposed to.
“When we moved to DC a few things changed.” Gary held up his hand and counted with his fingers “First of all the Ghawar oil fields were destroyed and that sent the price of oil through the roof, crippling the economy. Second was the mandatory implementation of the entire population to be chipped with the Encompass system. Before DC that was a voluntary thing; under the guise of reducing the overall paperwork and costs to the Government…now it became law and mandatory…and if you didn’t have it done you were not allowed to buy or sell anything, as cash became illegal…if you persisted in trying to pay with cash you would then be classified as a terrorist, and could be legally killed.”
A few of the group subconsciously rubbed the backs of their necks where the Encompass chips were imbedded.
“Third, were the assassinations of the Patriots and their families…”
Jack interjected “Now, hold on for a minute…it was you guys that started that business”
“No it wasn’t. You see; you only know part of the story…the part that they want you to know.” Gary paused and continued “When we started in DC, the Government bailed out and went underground to Mt Weather VA. I guess it was ok for them to send others to their deaths, but when it came to them…I don’t want to get off the subject here. OK, so the Government changed their tactics. They started to kidnap the families of the Patriots and holding them hostage…their promise that if the “Terrorist” would turn their selves in, their families would be set free and the “Terrorist” would do some jail time.” Gary paused again as his anger was starting to rise. “Well, it didn’t work that way. The people that turned them selves in were given a quick lethal injection…no trial…no due process. Oh and guess what? The families were given the same treatment, that way the Government couldn’t be sued…as if the courts would actually allow that to take place.”
“This is the first that I’ve heard about this” Jack said
Rob looked at his friend. “It’s true Jack.”
“WHAT! Are you shittin me Rob?” Jack was visibly upset
“I heard that some of the ‘Black Bag’ types were doing this” Rob said angrily “They tried to recruit some of us…we refused…I don’t know anyone from the Teams that were involved.”
Gary looked at Rob and his anger burned “But you knew…and did nothing.”
Rob looked at Gary and said apologetically “You’re right…I did know…and I didn’t do anything.” Rob paused and looked at Gary “Please believe me when I say that I am sorry about it too.”
Gary reached over and took Rob’s glass and poured another drink for them both. “Rob, I don’t hold any hard feelings against you guys. I’ve had plenty of time to think on all of this…this was just a set up, you didn’t know.”
“A set up?” Rob asked
“Yeah, as I think about all the events, as they’ve unfolded…it’s pretty clear, this was all orchestrated.” The two drank their bourbon and continued. “So as I was saying, when they started with the assassinations, after a while they just started to forego the injections and just do a dynamic entry on the house and kill everyone.” Gary paused again “Well, my guys started to adopt their tactics and go after the families of those responsible and then it spread to anyone that worked for the Government…that’s what you heard on the news, us attacking them and not what actually started it.”
Silence permeated the group as everyone had their own thoughts.
Gary continued “The fourth thing that happened was the splitting up of the military. They took the Special Forces…SEAL’s…Green Beret’s…and the others and divided you all up and sent you to the far corners of the world.” Gary paused “Do you know why?”
Rob and Jack shook their heads no.
“It’s because you’re a threat to them. If you were planning a nefarious deed against the United States, would you like to have on the ground and in front of you, Special Forces?”
“No, I wouldn’t” Rob said
“So off you go to Tanzania and Tajikistan…and whatever other ‘stan that’s out there.” Gary paused again “Rob, what are Special Forces doing in Tanzania?”
Rob looked at Gary and knew that they had been duped by someone. He was starting to open his eyes to this fact. Rob repeated the mantra that had been drilled into him”They are there to stop the ethnic violence in the western part of the country and to help protect wildlife”
“In other words they threw you guys in there to try to stop tribal killings...that have been going on for, oh what? Since time began?” Gary paused “protect wildlife is a fancy word for Game Warden.” Gary shook his head “What a waste of talent. You know, you guys are the best trained and the most highly motivated men in the service.” Gary looked at the SEAL’s who knew they were and proudly nodded in agreement with Gary’s assessment “Hell, just look at all the money spent just trying to get Jefferson and Spic to speak proper English”
Everyone laughed at that statement “My English ees good” Spic said to Williams who nodded no.
Jefferson chuckled “Good golly…Miss Molly.” He looked at Gary saying “Suh; I’m pehrfectly undah-standable” Jefferson said emphasizing his southern accent and playing along with abroad smile.
As the laughter died down Gary continued on. “So now with the Teams gone, the regular forces are being swapped out for “Special UN troops”, under the name of World Police.” Pausing again “Only, before they go, the regular forces that have highly technical skills, like the sophisticated weapons systems of The Predator or the HIMARS mobile rocket launchers etc, they train the incoming UN troops on OUR equipment, then they are assigned to another out of the way post.” Gary paused “Dollars to doughnuts, they’re in some prison camp somewhere.”
“Martin, you paint a pretty bleak picture” Jack said shaking his head
Gary looked Jack in the eye and “Yeah, well the reality is Jack…you’re next.”
Jack sat upright and looked not surprised, but nodded, as he knew the Submarine Services were next inline for assimilation. “I was just introduced to our “World Naval Force” counterparts today.” Jack paused “A couple of Iranian’s that are going on our cruise…to observe. How do you like them apples?”
Silence again fell on the group as the Sub forces were the biggest stick the United States swung. With this group compromised, our present and future national security…was over. Jack looked at Gary and started to speak, before he did, his secure satellite cell phone buzzed…everyone heard it. Jack looked at the phone and the identified the caller “Admiral Brown”. Jack got up and stepped away from the table “Yes, Admiral” Jack listened for a moment and said “I’ll be right in, sir”
Gary looked at Rob “It’s started”
“That’s was Admiral Brown. I’m needed at the base immediately” Jack said with a dispiriting tone.
“Jack, I haven’t told you how I know about what’s going on with your subs.” Gary paused for a brief moment “I will tell you, but first I want you to know something…I remember that in the dream or vision or whatever you want to call it, something that might help you.” Pausing again “Right before they were attacked by the Kilo’s, they received a message from SECDEF asking them to return to Kings Bay. It was right after this that they were sunk.”
“Kilo’s?” Jack looked surprised
“That’s what they said was tracking them…two of them”
Jack looked at Gary and Rob “Admiral Brown told me this afternoon that the West Virginia was ‘ordered to return to Kings Bay’…this morning.” Jack paused “If what you are saying is true Martin, and I really hope that it’s not, then the West Virginia is already gone.” Jack paused while Lauren came over to him “Oh God…I knew those men” Jack started to get emotional over the loss that he knew in his heart was real.
“Jack it’s really important that you not say anything about our conversation that might clue them in to you already knowing.” Gary said to the angry and distraught Captain. “They think that we are almost done for…and they are right, however, you and your sailors and Rob and his SEAL’s are definite targets right now.” Looking at both the men. “Maybe knowing what we know, why don’t we see if we can turn this around? If we were playing chess…we would be in check.” Gary paused “I don’t want to get to the point of check-mate.”
Rob and Jack with stern faces nodded yes. Rob said to Jefferson “I want Walton, Osterman and Tomlinson to go with the Captain.”
“Yes suh.” Jefferson turned and left to get the three team members for their new assignment.
Jack kissed a tearful Lauren goodbye and with the three SEAL’s left for the base.
“OK, Rob…where were we?”
“I’m pretty much finished with that, so that brings us to New York.” Gary paused “In New York our group’s mission changed. You see the elites that were in DC left either to go to Mt Weather or to parts unknown. Most of them went to New York City. Our job for New York was to disrupt the supplies going into the city and to make a night on the town for them a little miserable. We did this by attacking the transportation systems, attacking bridges and railroads.” Gary paused and with a smile “Their Starbucks coffee got a bit expensive when we were there.” Gary paused again “It was during the time from DC to New York that I started to hear these ‘voices’.”
“Voices?” Rob’s skepticism wasn’t hidden by his face making his eyes raise.
“Yeah, voices. Now I know what you’re thinking, it was pretty bizarre I’ll be honest with you.” Gary paused again “It wasn’t like there was a conversation going on or anything like that…they were basically simple commands. If I was going to go left…the voice would say; ‘go right’…or ‘don’t go’, that kind of thing. When they started, I would do what he said and afterwards ask my guys who said it, because it sounded just like you and I talking…pretty normal.”
Rob looked at Gary and rubbed his chin, wondering whether he had crossed the line between crazy or truthful.
Gary continued “Every time that this voice said to do something; I did it. Afterwards I saw that if I didn’t do what he had said, then we’d be dead…it’s that simple. You see by ‘going left’ or ‘right’ or whatever the command was…if I would have gone my way, there would have been a grenade, field of fire from a sniper or just walked right into their group.” Gary paused and took a deep breath “I know it sounds crazy, and as I am sitting in front of you, it’s the honest truth. I came to the point where I relied on that.”
“You said ’He’. Is the voice a man’s voice?”
“Yeah, soft…but very powerful. That’s about the only way I can describe it.”
“Where’s your group now?”
“They’re all dead…I don’t know…I might be the only one left out of the entire lot.”
Rob thought a moment “You know Martin…combat does weird things to people…I’ve seen weird things myself, but I’ve never heard voices.”
Gary nodded, continuing “New York was another turning point. You see up until that time, we would have negotiated with the Government. All they would have had to do was to ask.” Gary paused “But they didn’t. The President wanted everything her way, and being the coward that she is, turned it all over to this Santana.” Pausing again “This was Santana’s plan from the beginning” Gary looked at Rob “New York was the first time we faced the ‘Blue Hats’, and it was the first time we ran into the Predators and that level of technology.”
“I don’t know what to say Martin. I really am at a loss. The information that you have given us so far is spot on…”
Gary stood up and pulled the foil square out of his pocket. Looking at Jefferson “You missed this”
Jefferson looked down and shook his head.
Rob looked at his man and grimaced, looking back at Gary “What’s this?”
“Inside this are seven Encompass chips. I don’t want to open them up out here…lets go inside and I’ll explain this to you.”
The men and women went inside to Jacks Rec room. Gary and Rob took a seat at Jacks card table and the SEAL’s lined the walls along with April and Lauren.
“Like I said, there are seven Encompass chips here” Gary opened the pouch up and lying inside were the seven chips, six were identical in size and color; the seventh was larger and was colored blue. “I don’t want any signal to get out and possibly trip some alarm on their systems.” The SEAL’s leaned over Gary’s shoulder and looked at the chips. “All of these chips are from people. There is one from April” Gary said pointing to her. “Four are from people that I recovered from mass graves…as recently as a few days ago. The last one from the mass grave was from a Jewish family’s baby boy…maybe six months old…they beat him to death” Gary paused “The Father, they cut off his head and kicked it around like a soccer ball, Mom was raped and then tortured and killed”
“You know for a fact that these people were Jewish?” Rob asked while David Greenberg angrily looked on.
“Yeah, they jammed a Yarmulke in his mouth, as they were playing soccer.”
“Where are these graves?” Rob paused as his voice had an angered edge to it.
“The four I found, I’ve marked on a map. I can take some men there so you can check it out.”
Rob nodded yes “What’s with the blue chip?” The SEAL’s came over and looked over Gary’s shoulder at the larger device.
“I got this off of their spotter. I killed him and the attacking group that tried to take out April’s family.”
“How many were in that group?”
“You killed twenty of their soldiers?” Rob asked questioning his truthfulness
“Yeah, there were ten in the initial group and ten in the back up group…I killed them all.” Gary paused “The Predator killed April’s family.” Pausing again “They were killed because they gave help to these Jewish people. I talked to Mac, April’s Dad, and he said that they had come through a couple of days before and all they did was to give them some food and help then out with some of the baby’s clothing…they were murdered because of that.”
Rob looked Gary in the eyes and saw no indication of deceit or braggadocio. “Alright, so how’d you do it?”
Gary found a piece of paper and a pencil and sketched out the area. “Ridgeline here and ridgeline here…farm here” Gary pointed out the detailed features. “Sniper/spotter here; five man assault team here; and SAW gunners over here. I shot these two with the Ruger; hit these five with a frag, and these three with the Garand. The ten in the two Humvee’s as back up, I took out with a SAW.”
Rob looked at Gary’s penciled report and nodded approval as did the SEAL’s who also looked on. “Why didn’t the Predator take you out?”
“I think maybe because it was starting to snow…maybe he couldn’t get a lock on me”
Rob looked at the drawing and nodded “Nice job”
Gary looked at the SEAL Commander, smiled and said “So, I have your approval, here?”
“Don’t get cocky with me.” Rob paused “If what you say is true, then this should be fairly easy to check out.” Rob paused again “Tell me Martin…why did you get these chips?”
“He told me to get them, you know, the voice” Gary took a breath “Looking at it now, I think it might be because of you.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, you know how I was saying before that this was planned out by Santana?”
Rob nodded “Yeah”
“Maybe this is the other side of the plan. Maybe the ‘voice’, wants you to have these.”
“Are you saying that this is like a good vs. evil kind of thing?”
“Maybe it is, I don’t know” Pausing “Here is what I would suggest though, take these chips and get them to someone who can access them. However, I would strongly suggest that your person who does this; that they do it from a remote terminal. I would bet that when they are accessed; some kind of an alarm would go off.” Pausing again “We really need to keep under their radar” Looking at Rob and the men “I can’t stress to you enough, the danger that you are in.”
Rob looked at the chips with trepidation, such a small device with such power “I think my guy can do that.” Rob noticed something and looked up “Martin, we have seven chips here, you’ve told me about six…what’s the seventh?”
Gary looked at the Commander and took a deep breath “That one…is from a SEAL”
This revelation brought the entire room to a standstill. Gary heard four pistols being withdrawn from their holsters; he knew that they were pointed at his head. Looking up at the Commander “I didn’t kill him…” Gary paused as emotion filled his voice “…he was my friend.”
Rob glared at the man in front of him.
“It was in New York…” Gary started to tell the story “…we were on the outskirts of the city, to the west. We had brought traffic to a standstill and were starting to come up against mainly the Blue Hats…” pausing “…we then ran into a group that uh…were very good. This was a four man SEAL team…”pausing to take a deep breath “…we fought each other through neighborhoods and woods.” Gary rubbed his chin at the memories “We fought for 72 hours straight…no sleep, no rest…and no food.” Gary looked at Rob “Funny thing…”
Rob angrily exclaimed “I don’t see anything funny about it Martin”
“Hold on for a minute would you?” Gary paused again and pointed his finger at Rob “Look…I am a good shot. When I draw bead, I hit my target. Before this all came down I used to shoot competition. Now, I was using a M1A Springfield 7.62 with Lake City match ammo. I had Aimpoint optics…and anything, and I mean anything out to 500 yards; I owned.” Gary now had an edge to his voice and paused “I couldn’t hit any of them. What I am saying is…every time I drew down on one for them, I missed…and I don’t miss.” Pausing “They were having the same problems against us…they couldn’t hit us. I saw the look on their faces through my optics…it was like someone had a big piece of bullet proof glass in between us.”
Rob said sarcastically “The voices?”
Gary shot back and shrugged his shoulders “How do I know?” Taking a breath and continued “So, eventually we broke contact. My group found ourselves in some woods, as we were making our way through, we smelled food cooking. Do you know what it’s like to walk into someone’s home at Thanksgiving and smell a turkey? Or bacon and coffee in the morning?”
Rob nodded, but was still unmoved
“Well, it was just like that. One moment we were walking and then…BAM! Food…we were starving and followed our noses and stomachs to the source.” Pausing “As we come up to the source, we see that it’s a group of six Indians…not Native Americans, but from the country India. They were at the edge of a crossroad and were all squatted around a small charcoal Hibachi; cooking rice and chicken…with curry…and I fuckin hate curry.” Gary paused again “so we decide that we would kill those Blue Hats, and eat their food…”
The SEAL’s although still with their pistols out nodded at the move, as they would probably have done the same thing.
“…so, we step out onto the street and draw down on the Indians…and at the exact same time Tony and his guys, the other SEAL’s, stepped out opposite of us. They had the same plan that we did…”
“Tony?” Rob asked
“Yeah…Tony, let me finish ok?” Gary continued “So, we are yelling at the SEAL’s to drop their weapons and they are yelling at us to drop our weapons...and the Indians are jabbering away at each other…” Pausing again “…it was a Mexican standoff…well; the Indian’s get up and ran away. The last one that got up, had pissed his pants he was so scared…I gotta tell you, that was one of the funniest things I had seen in a long time. I started laughing…and so did Tony.” Gary was silent for a moment “So, here are two groups of guys that just fought each other for 3 days straight…and then it hits us…we’re all American’s…and we’re trying to kill each other...”
Silence in the room
“…I said to Tony, ‘Do you remember World War 1?’ he looked at me like I was crazy and said in his New Jersey accent “Da fuck do you mean?” I said, in WW1 on Christmas Eve a group of Germans and a group of Allies put down their weapons and had a truce and a meal together…” Looking at Rob “…I laid my rifle down and looked at him...he did the same. We all laid our weapons down and I walked over to him and put my hand out and said “I’m Gary…” Gary looked at Jefferson “Do you know what he said?”
Jefferson nodded no
“…Good golly…Miss Molly”
Jefferson looked at Gary “That was Tony Pazzoili, wazunt it?”
Gary looked at Jefferson and said “Yes”
“Mistah Martin…he was my best friend…we was in BUD’s togethah” Jefferson paused “Mistah Martin…I shu’ah hope you didn’t kill him”
Gary shook his head no and continued “…we sat down and started to eat this food and talking. Come to find out, Tony and I had a lot in common.” Gary looked at Jefferson “you see, he was from New Jersey or as he said “Joisey” and I was from Maryland…and we both liked football, and beer. Now you would have thought that being from ‘Joisey’ he would be a Jets fan. Well he wasn’t, he was a Baltimore Ravens fan…he had buddy in school that was a cornerback for the Ravens, Marcus Jones…”
Jefferson lowered his weapon as Gary was giving details of his best friend…that only a friend would know. He motioned to his brother SEAL’s for them to do the same, which they all did…except Williams, who still had a hate filled look.
“…we talked about football and food, real food. He told me that his parents had a restaurant in North Jersey. He was so proud of his Dad…his Dad was a plumber and Tony said he could make the best ‘gravy’ there was…”
“So that’s where you got that from, right?” April hadn’t missed a word
“We had spaghetti the other night and Gary asked for the ‘gravy’, instead of saying spaghetti sauce. We all thought that was a strange thing to call it” April explained to Jefferson
“…so Tony said his Dad and Mom started a small restaurant…the best Italian food in North Jersey.” Gary paused “we made a deal that after this was all over we would meet there and watch a game and have a beer…” Gary started to break down. The pain of losing someone that he connected with so deeply in such a short period of time was taking its toll on him. Gary shook it off to finish “So, we’re eating this…shit for food, and uh, I told you I hate curry, right? Well, the reason is that it blows through me like grease through a goose. We’re all sitting and talking like there was no tomorrow, I mean, we were the baddest asses in the woods, you know. So, I feel this curried chicken start to blow through me and get up to find a spot to do my business. I step off the road about 10 or 15 yards or so and get behind this big oak…no sooner than I drop my drawers…” Gary closed his eyes as he remembered vividly the next event “…then it hit. The explosion was huge and tossed me forward face first into the dirt…” Gary looked up and anger filled his heart and face “…those fuckin Indian’s had called in an air strike…it was a Predator that used the heat from the charcoal grill as an aiming point…the Hellfire missile killed everybody.”
Jefferson came over and sat next to Gary, who had tears streaming down his face. “Did he suffah?”
Gary looked at Tony’s friend “You really don’t want to know, do you?”
“Yes Suh, I do”
Gary paused and looked at Jefferson “Tony was cut in half by the blast; from the midsection down. I sat down next to him and pulled him up into my lap…and just held him. He didn’t say anything…he just closed his eyes and went away.” Gary lost it, he covered his face with his arms on the table and cried “I couldn’t save him, nobody could have…”
Everyone in the room showed their emotions, except Williams, who showed no emotion. April came over to Gary and put her arm around him. Jefferson, Goldberg and Espinoza also came over to Gary as did Rob. The death of a warrior is never to be taken lightly; the death of a brother is taken most seriously. Gary was being accepted as a brother.