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 Search for Silent - Chpt 12

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PostSubject: Search for Silent - Chpt 12   October 27th 2009, 8:49 am

The Search for Silent
Chapter Twelve
Part 1

Victor once again found himself being awakened by a phone call. Captain Silent again dropped from the upper bunk to answer it. At the end of the conversation, the command to get up and get moving again sounded, although the words were slightly apologetic.

"It is not our show this time, Victor. This is something that others want us to watch."

"Can't they tape it?"

"Up, Lieutenant, and let us get the rest moving as well. Our day starts when our superior officers say that it starts. And that means it starts now. And don't complain to me about it. You volunteered. I was drafted."

The group was brought to their conference room. Four MPs guarded the door, and check the identities of all before allowing them to pass. General Fielding was present assuring that a large screen monitor was turned so that it could be easily seen by all in the room. Seeing the group of Army and Air Force personnel enter, he started speaking even as he moved around to check his work.

"We would like to keep this quiet, but there really is no way. We did not however want you waking up and hearing the news from other sources, so you were awakened and called in to hear this first hand. Grab a chair and sit down. Oh, I need someone to turn this computer on. I don't have the password."

The computer with the large screen was generally used by Silent for group presentations. It however had been set up with protective measures according to the policy for all computers in the room. While the passwords were a strange combination of upper and lowercase letters along with numbers, the system had a logic that allowed each member of the team to know what to type. Victor thus confidently stepped up to type in what would give the general access to using the computer. The superior officer did not make a comment, but simply stood while holding a thin plastic case containing a DVD. Victor did his job, then quietly returned to his seat.

Without any preamble, the general put the DVD in the computer then went to find a seat. As Stacy moved a hand to indicate that a chair had already been placed for him, Victor stood to tap a mouse to tell the computer to go ahead and play the movie. He moved backwards to his seat so as not to miss anything.

The movie started with the leader of a certain country pointing at a map and telling about the wonders of his country. A few very short clips of people working and having fun interrupted the view of the leader in order to stress the words of the peaceful nature of his land and the blessings that his benevolent rule provided to the people. Victor noticed Colonel Terrell and Captain Silent trade glances with each other, but both held any comments. Victor tried to read from their faces whether they were remembering their own visits to the sights or the horrors that the ruler left unsaid.

The lady had to turn and glare at others to silence their comments when a picture of her came to the screen. The photo of her from the military database was rather good, but some of the other shots of her taken from security cameras were mostly blurred. Victor did not consider any of the images to be the colonel, as the ladies there had dark hair and rather dark skin. The voice of the leader mentioned a disguise, and Victor remembered the twice shown demonstration of the colonel changing her appearance the other day, but still could not make the connection. He noticed that Captain Silent looked to the lady and shook his head as if to say that certain shots were not of her, although Victor could only wonder how he could tell.

The leader went on a rather long tirade about the evils of Colonel Terrell. It did include an association that the entire population of the United States of America were evil, but mostly fixated on those actively working for the US government as being villains. The rant ended with it being stressed that her disappearance to cause more cruel acts was the reason that a UN delegation was being held with their lives at risk.

The next pictures were of Captain Silent. No military picture of him was shown, but only views from a number of security cameras. Victor noted that none were of him moving covertly, but of him calmly shopping in large stores. The leader ranted that the images were of the agent that helped the succubus Colonel Terrell. As an image of Captain Silent being in the cockpit of a certain bomber was shown, the identity of the man was revealed to be a Simon Nichols. The leader of the country stressed that he demanded that the government of the United States turn over the thief to his country that justice could be served, and only until such happened could the possibility of the UN delegates being freed be discussed.

When the movie ended, the general said, "Your cover is blown, Simon."

"No, Sir, it is not. That show is too rambling to get coverage on the airwaves. Most won't see it."

"Those who consider the lives of the UN delegates important will see it. There is no reason to keep you operating under an alias."

Silent's voice stayed strong as he replied, "Yes, Sir, there is. Nothing in that video connects me with the military."

"I believe that the connection will come real soon."

"Excuse me, General, but I will need to hear that from someone else. At present I will continue to operate as Silent."

"I will take that under advisement, Captain." The general kept his eyes focused on the young man as he asked, "You don't have any resentment about me showing this to your staff?"

"No, Sir. The reason I call Stacy, Top Secret, has nothing to do with keeping her identity a secret. Nicknames in the military are common enough. Our staffs might now know my real name, but there should not be any problem with any of them continuing to call me Captain Silent."

The general rose as he said, "Well, we are going to need some answers quick. I expect to be having to answer questions about you all day."

"I will send a couple of men to get some breakfast, General. You can expect us to start working pronto."

"Do you have anything?"

Silent looked at the general, then had his eyes scan the uniform before he asked, "You are Air Force?"

"That should be apparent."

"You were a pilot?"

"Mechanic. I worked my way up by designing methods of getting our jobs done faster and faster."

"Perfect. When I showed our objects to General Masterson, he called in a special ops team to test my belief. Everything worked perfect the first time, but I really did not need such gurus. I truthfully should have been able to get any team trained in attaching bombs." Silent paused, but the general did not speak, so the captain went back to talking. "You should have a number of teams on this carrier that train to be the Nascar pit crew of bomb attaching."

"Okay, Silent, what is your point?"

"The job could be done by a machine."

The stance of the general did not show any need to consider his words before saying them. "Not as efficiently, or as quickly. When time is of essence, humans can handle things being not so exacting a lot better than a machine."

"But it could be done?"

"Yes. We have looked into it."

Captain Silent rose while telling the general to sit down. A large tablet of paper set on an easel was brought over, then the captain started into his theory. He described the attachment points on the bomber that had been stolen, then the objects that fit to them. The general made comments letting Silent know that the data had already been studied, so he went ahead with his theory.

"I spoke to Stacy last night about the possibility of building a rebomber, an aircraft designed to attach bombs to a bomber."

The lady interjected, "You did not mention attach last night, Silent. You simply said refill a bomber with bombs."

"If you don't attach them, they cannot be properly armed and guided."

She looked to the general to say, "I told Silent that I did not know of us ever developing such a craft."

"I don't believe that we have either. If you are going to send a plane up loaded with bombs, you might as well have it drop them."

Silent quickly inserted his own thoughts, "That assumes that you have bombs. What if you don't have bombs? Listen, a bomber has certain requirements in the manner that it flies. Form follows function. A bomber is not a plane that those wanting to do quick assaults will desire."

"It depends on your definition of a quick assault."

"My definition of quick assault is a team sent in to steal bombs."

Stacy shot out of her chair, but the general waved at her to sit as he responded, "You are talking about a plane designed to move in quickly, be loaded with bombs, then fly up to attach its payload to a bomber in the air?"

"That is right."

"Why not just fly to an airfield to have the bombs put on by a proper team?"

"Because that takes time. I am talking about steal bombs, attach bombs, drop bombs. Those stealing the bombs have enough problems stealing the bombs, and cannot be assumed to have the time or training to attach them. Having the bomber on the airfield ready to go is a liability in time and a declaration to those watching from the air that some plan is being set into motion. I am talking about having a plan that can operate in one quick offensive action."

Now the general paused to think before asking, "Who are we going to attack?"

"The one country you can only hit by catching them off guard. Stacy and I were refueled over the ocean, but we flew it home."

"So you are talking about stealing our bombs, then dropping them on us?"

"No, I don't believe that they are going to steal our bombs. At least, they aren't going to steal them from us."

"I will pass your theory along, Silent, but if it gets laughed at you might be seeing a flight to a place you thought you left behind."

"Then I will get my team back to work attempting to build my case, General."

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PostSubject: Re: Search for Silent - Chpt 12   October 31st 2009, 10:27 pm

"Excuse me, General, but I will need to hear that from someone else."

Not sure why, but this line jumped out at me.
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PostSubject: Part 2   November 1st 2009, 7:55 am

Thanks, Urs, I guess - I mean, did it jump out at you in a good way or bad way?

The Search for Silent
Chapter Twelve

Part 2

As the door was closed leaving the team to get to work, Victor said, "That is a mighty wild plan, Captain."

Stacy showed that she agreed, "Yes, but it is a cohesive plan. It is something that can be broken up with each of us exploring the possibilities of our separate steps. It might not be the answer, but it is a solid framework from which to work." Before she started designating groups, she turned to look at Captain Silent. "You kept mentioning the word, positions, last night."

"Yes, as my whole plan hinges on it being possible to attach a bomb in flight. There are requirements to refuel, and I suspect even more exacting ones to attach bombs in flight."

"It should be, but we know the people to call."

The connection was established faster than most expected. Colonel Terrell and Captain Silent expected to eat during the wait, but the initial phone call was answered by the very person that they wanted to speak to. The phone was put on speaker as all in the room were signaled to sit back down.

The chief master sergeant did not believe that a plane could be made to attach bombs in flight. All in the room however noticed that his reasoning had nothing to do with the difficulty or ease in attaching a bomb. He mentioned the way bombs attach under the wing of the craft to be the main problem. Planes needed a steady airflow around the wings to stay aloft, so maneuvers that could disrupt the Bernoulli Effect would not be safe. The chief master sergeant made certain to point out that special arming techniques and aiming systems prevented simply loading a bomb into the belly of a plane then dropping it. His conclusion thus came down to the primary problem with Captain Silent's plan being that attempting to perform such a maneuver during flight would require the craft to come too close and possibly disrupt the performance of the planes. He however did have some additional words.

"Now, none of these good pieces of logical thought have nothing to do with what some crazy loon might have built. We all should know about whom we are discussing, and anything is possible. Considering that he had people design a method of arming our bombs, he might have geniuses able to figure out how to build this plane of yours. The damn thing only has to work once to cause a lot of grief."

Colonel Terrell asked, "Chief Master Sergeant, have you seen the film that reveals Silent's name?"

"No, although I have been told that it exists."

"Watch it, please. Silent asked me last night if I could remember seeing another unknown plane on the base where we stole our bomber. That film has a shot of Silent in the cockpit of the bomber as he is stealing it. If there is more footage of that, or any other film of that base, it could help us."

"You might have better sources, Colonel, but I can check."

"Thank you for your time." As soon as the connection closed, the lady said, "Silent, get those men going after our food. In the meantime, I am going to check my sources to see if I can get that footage."

"I will get our people working to develop the type of attack I am theorizing. I believe that we are beginning to lock in on an actual scheme."

The captain began to move, but a hand of the lady reached out to stop him as she said, "Uh, Silent, get the people to work on that, but you need to start planning your own scheme. I don't want you getting killed."

"I believe that I have that one figured out as well, Top Secret. Still, the general knows of this crazy idea, and I better show him it is valid before telling him another. Plan?"

"Plan."

Victor was watching the lady move to the phone when the face of Captain Silent moved into view to ask, "Okay, you heard everything. Why aren't you working?"

"Sorry, Sir. They had a lot of photos of her in action, but almost none of yours. Still, I recognized you and really did not recognize the colonel."

"She did not fool me, Victor. I don't look at hair color or skin color. I look at the hips, chest, and other things that really don't change, assuming that the lady in question keeps herself in shape, however much ladies might try."

"All right, Captain. I am sorry for not focusing on the matter at hand. What are we to do?"

The team showed that they were beginning to learn the style of their leaders as they began creating and dissecting a plan to bomb their own country. It took Captain Silent grabbing a legal pad and begin establishing an outline, but once they realized that what they would be doing was the same as what they had been doing, they fell into step and got busy. By the time breakfast finally arrived, the group had themselves set for a day of work.

While the actual strategy of stealing bombs to drop on an enemy country was simple in design, making it a reality required a number of specifics that pushed the capabilities of the team. There was so much that they really did not know. The problem that faced them over and over was overcoming some minor obstacle that seemed to make the simple plan an extremely complicated procedure. It helped that they were on a carrier. Most details of aircraft could be reliably found. There were also sources for troop movement. The group found that the problem was not finding answers, but discovering just how many questions each step in the plan required to be answered.

Victor finally had to voice some of his frustration. "Sir, every step of this plan is beset with failure. The biggest problem is getting to the States. I don't mean getting there, as you have already proven that the plane could reach it."

One of the other men voiced his own dejection, "But even then it is one-way. You could not fly back."

"Well, yes, but it will take too much time. We could easily get planes up to meet the bomber and blow that thing out of the sky before it ever crosses land."

Captain Silent asked, "What if we pick a path that keeps us over land?"

"Yes, that would be bad, especially since we are talking nukes, but still a point of minimum casualties could be chosen."

A finger went around and pointed at everyone as Captain Silent stressed, "We don't want that. Remember, right now we are trying to make this plan work."

Someone else said, "What if we go total destruction? We bomb the storage facility, open it up, send in a quick strike team, grab a few bombs, then take off to finish the mission?"

"Do you think that you could make that plan work?"

"I am going to keep it on the table."

"It is presently on the table."

Victor felt that many proposed plans were better at being potential stories for action flicks than realistic tactics. He however found himself learning a lot of facts seeking to support or tear down each maneuver, and that got him deeply involved in the process. There was still the problem of time required to get between various locations, and he could not help but believe such was a major problem to any realistic plan. However crazy the leader of the country might be, surely he understood that the United States simply was too far away to be a good target.

Everyone became distracted as Colonel Terrell put a phone on speaker before saying, "Glad to hear back from you so quickly, Chief Master Sergeant."

"Yes, Colonel, I have a question for you. This bomber of yours would not happen to be a prototype?"

"Well, I don't believe it is one off an assembly line."

"The reason I am asking, Colonel," the chief master sergeant spoke sternly to silence those that chuckled at the remark, "is that my team has been studying it rather carefully. The other team has as well, but they were basically cataloging it. We were called in because of a specific purpose. That question you presented this morning might have merit."

Colonel Terrell glared at the men to keep them silent as she replied, "Instead of wasting time resaying things, how about telling me why your logical thoughts this morning no longer apply?"

"There is no clear evidence, Colonel, but there is a slot in the wing out to the hard point that does not make sense. There is a panel in the hull that can be removed with no interference underneath. My boys believe that they could retrofit a track system to carry a bomb dropped into a bay out to the hard point. Mind you, at normal cruising speeds there are still a number of problems, but it brings your theory one step closer to reality. If your bomber is a prototype, built simply to test the viability of the bombing system, then there could be another more developed bomber."

"Or another prototype built specifically to test the loading system."

"Yes. What is scary though, is that it should be easier to add the new hard point to the bomber with the loading system, than adding the loading system to this bomber."

Colonel Terrell again glared at the men in the room as they began to murmur to each other, "Does this make Silent's rebomber closer to a reality?"

"Dropping a payload into a slot on the top of the plane is a lot more workable. Mind you that sometimes it is hard to refuel a plane, and this procedure will be much more exacting. We still have to understand that we are up against crazy people."

"Who only need to get it done once to kill millions and scare the world."

"Right, Colonel."

"I thank you for the call, Chief Master Sergeant."

The men in the room began to stir at that statement, but froze back into silence as the voice on the speaker spoke some more. "Oh, and plans are in the works to get you that film. Needless to say, but the UN is involved. We are not dealing with them, but those above us are. Rumors of this plan are leaking, and while many want to claim that it is as crazy as it sounds, others are smart enough to chase after the evidence you are looking for as well."

Captain Silent said, "Well, that film is important Chief Master Sergeant. It is conclusive proof that the bomber is mine. I stole it."

"You can take up that claim with the United States Air Force, Captain."

Laughter passed around, then the phone call ended. While it was good to hear that the plan might be workable, all went back to work understanding that they had a number of problems that still needed to be resolved. Wondering when Captain Silent would make the next food run, all set themselves to the tasks to which they had been working.

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PostSubject: Re: Search for Silent - Chpt 12   November 4th 2009, 6:16 am

Not sure if it was good or bad, just made me chuckle

This line: The stance of the general did not show any need to consider his words before saying them. "Not as efficiently, or as quickly. When time is of essence, humans can handle things being not so exacting a lot better than a machine."

was great however, very profound truth.
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