Boulder (Riders of Apollo #5)

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Riley Everett

Today is the day.

Ah shit, I can’t believe I have to sneak onto a fucking boat in the middle of nowhere with C4 on it and try to not die. How is that fair?

I’ve been pacing for the last hour, going over the plan in my head time and time again. I’ve spent the last two weeks fucking around. Well fucking Boulder but not the point. We’ve spent basically everyday together, when I’m not training the women I’m with him. Talking, eating, laughing and, of course, fucking.

I’m gonna miss him when I leave but it’s fine, I’ll be coming back in a few weeks anyway. I did promise besides the organisation will owe me after everything I’ve done for them. Johnson managed to find the specs of the boat and everything in every storage container on board from the computer we hacked.

We also know that there are eighteen French ops on there and only seven crew members. Hopefully, they will have grouped the crew together but there obviously has to be engineers to keep an eye on the engine which is well below deck and then the captain and the other people who drive the boat will be in the cabin above deck.

Meaning, I have to kill every French op on board. Johnson sent me pictures of the crew so I don’t kill the wrong people and I’ve memorised them because I really don’t like the idea of killing an innocent. Still, even though I’m prepared, I would’ve loved more time.

Even if it was just to spend with Boulder. I’ll probably be leaving tomorrow which means I’ll have to say goodbye and I hate goodbyes. “Snap the fuck out of it, Riles. No time, we have to move.” I tell myself, pointing at the mirror and glaring at myself.

What has life come to?

I check all my person for all my weapons before I leave, I’ve gone in unprepared before and that’s just not fun. I have two pistols, both with suppressors, a garotte for particularly feisty opponents and a few daggers. I wanted to bring grenades but since that would just trigger the C4, Johnson said no.

I pick up my sniper rifle and sling the bag over my back before heading downstairs. I ditched my Aston knowing that MI6 provided it and I don’t wanna know what the moles will do if they figure out what I’m doing. I’ve loaded all my things into this shitty little Ford I bought after selling the other one so that if they decide to rig my flat with explosives, I’ll at least have all my stuff.

I left my work phone in there but I have my personal on me. I know MI6 don’t know about this one as only my family members, Johnson and Chief have that number. The Riders call me on the other one, even Boulder.

I start the drive and look over at the compound as I pass with sad eyes. Ugh, I’m acting like I’m going to my death. I blare my hype up music on the way just to get rid of the ‘meh’ feeling and I find myself getting excited. I know, morbid but what choice do I have?

I chug a Monster when I pull up in the space close enough to the harbour that I don’t have to walk far and nobody would suspect it. Now, it’s nine o’clock at night on Tuesday, the boat is due to dock exactly six hours from now which means I have to ride out to it.

I lay my rifle on a speedboat that I’m stealing before jumpstarting the engine and untying it. I fly off and click my comms on so Johnson can tell me which way I’m going. He directs me perfectly and I turn off the engine so that they don’t hear me coming. I drop the anchor and fix my rifle bag to my shoulders.

It’s in a waterproof bag so I can swim to the ship and climb the fucking side of it. Yes, you heard me right, climb it. Johnson gave me some tech, well the fucker made me make it from stuff I had to buy with my own money not the company credit card. I best get reimbursed for it because turns out tech shit is expensive.

I stop at the side of the boat, thankful Johnson made it stop so I don’t get sucked into the rotors. I start the long fucking climb up the side of it using the tech things as steps basically. I’m not even sure how they work even though I built them, I was injured a lot in the process but we’re not gonna tell anyone that because it’s embarrassing.

I roll over the bars and land on my back with a soft puff of air. “Fuck.” I groan and Johnson laughs like the sadistic asshole he is. “My arms feel like noodles.” I whisper and creep into the shadows as the massive light surveys the deck. “Okay, use your tech skills maestro, where are my bodies?”

“You’ve got two coming up on your left, you’re clear to take them out.” I press my back against the wall and wait for them to round the corner before shooting them both in the head. I take their guns and tuck them in my bag before searching them. I find some money in their wallets and stick it in my bra.

Might as well make it worth my while if I’m gonna die. “Right, three members of the crew are on the Bridge?”

“Bridge? I didn’t see a bridge on the specs.”

“No, you knobhead. That’s where the Captain drives the boat.” I am so stupid. I swear, I don’t know how I’ve lived to 28. “You’ve got two coming up behind you.” I duck behind the container as they pass right where I was before I get an angle on them, shooting them from behind. I hate doing that but I don’t really have much of a choice.

I search their bodies too and find nothing of importance except a few hundred dollars bills. “Okay, get on that container and get the rifle out. You’ve got loads of them coming up.” I pull out the tech again and use it to clamber up onto the freezing metal.

“Ooh this is not comfy.” I whine as I settle on my stomach, setting up my rifle and looking through the scope. “I’ve got nine targets, can you see anymore?”

“Nope, just them.” I take the one at the back out first and the others don’t notice. Thankfully, most of them aren’t facing each other and are otherwise occupied so I can take them out. Until the last four, which is when they notice that they’re being taken down. “Don’t worry, they can’t call for help. I jammed their radios.”

“You think of everything.” I clear those ones out before dismantling my rifle and jumping off the container. “Where are my bodies?” I ask after searching all eight of them, I know it’s time consuming but I have the time.

“You’ve got six up in the bridge but three of them are crew and you’ve got three in the engine room. At least I think it’s three, the heat generated by the engine makes it difficult for the satellite to pick up heat signatures. Of course, it’s never that easy. “Also, I’ve called the FBI to pick up the boat when it reaches the dock, the French aren’t brave enough to go through them so.”

“So I can get everything we need and then get back to my boat and not talk to FBI agents?” I ask hopefully and he tells me yes. I fight the urge to cheer and get back into my MI6 op brain. “I’m gonna go downstairs first.”

“Copy that.” I start through the difficult structure of the boat and meander through corridors and down steep ass, wet stairs that had my life flashing before my eyes. “You’re coming up on them now.” I press my back against the wall by the door and listen in to the voices.

“Just do your fucking jobs and you’ll see your kids again. Stop fucking crying.” The French accent is strong and I can hear the sobbing from here. I knock on the wall and the shouting stops. “Stay here.” Blokey demands and comes flying out of the room, he doesn’t even look my way so I wrap the garotte against his neck and tighten it.

He starts turning blue and I lower him to the floor because he’d make a racket if I just let him fall. “Michel?” Another man asks and I think about what I could do, I could go in there but I would endanger the crew members so I decide to wait for him to come check on his friend. “Don’t fucking move!”

As expected, he follows his friend out but he’s a lot more prepared. I go to stab him in the throat but he stops me last second. Well-trained I suppose. It seems he’s the last French guy down here so I don’t mind making a little noise, it’ll be covered by the engine anyway so no one will suspect.

He disarms me first before he lashes out. I stop his fist millimetres from my face. He must’ve been part of the Armée de Terre which is basically the French military. I wonder what made him turn to a life of crime, probably better pay.

I pull out another knife and so does he. For fuck’s sake. I twirl to avoid his blow before kicking him in the knee. He drops down to one knee but uses the to his advantage. I jump over his arm and use my momentum to kick him in the back of the head. He growls and powers up, lifting his hands to protect his face.

I kick him again, same knee and I can hear it crack. He screams in pain before gritting his teeth and hissing at me. Slap, kick, dodge, twirl. He keeps advancing and I play defence. I know I should be going at him but he’ll tire himself out.

Eventually, his defence drops because he thinks I can’t go for him, I use the chance to punch him straight on the fucking nose before using the other hand to stab him. I wince at the look on his face before gently laying him on the floor by his friend. I search him and his friend before heading into the engine room.

I find three crew members hidden in the corner looking terrified. “It’s chill. I’m a friend. Hey, question, where are the other crew members?”

“One is in the kitchen, the others are on the bridge.” One of them says shakily.

“Thanks, hey stay in here for now. Keep the door locked until the FBI knock.”

“Are you FBI?”

“No.” I wink before heading back out. I shut the door behind me and tell Johnson I’m heading to the bridge. I’m sure when I’m there and I’ve killed the French guards, the Cap can just tell everyone on the ship that everything is chill while I go searching through everything.

Luckily for me, the guards in the bridge haven’t a suspicion about what I’ve been up to so I just stroll in with a grin on my face. “Hey guys.” I greet and Johnson swears. The four guards all turn and point their guns at me. At least none of them are smart enough to grab a hostage. The three crew members make a run for it somewhere off to the left and the guards look pissed.

“Ignore them, we can get them later once we’ve killed her.” The main guy tells the others in French as I grin stupidly at them.

“You’re welcome to try.” I respond. I’m surprised they don’t just shoot me but I guess they have a point to prove.

I punch one of the square in the face and he falls over. Main guy gets kicked in the balls and the other two get kicked. I stab the one whose swaying on his feet from the punch, leaving the last three to descend on me again.

I disarm one guy and shoot him in the head with his own gun before smacking another guy with the butt of it. He wavers slightly but slips a knife from his belt seconds later, main guy keeps his gun and he shoots me in the chest.

I go flying backwards. “That’s what I thought, bitch.” He swears and both of them move to stand over my ‘dead’ body. I move quickly, stabbing one in the leg and stacking the other one with my legs. I stab one again this time in the chest before rolling on top of the other one, blade to his throat.

“Seems you forgot Kevlar.” I grin sarcastically before killing him too. Johnson then tells me how to work the announcement system and I tell everyone that it’s clear before going on my search. I plug a dongle in and get to work with my big scissors - I don’t know their technical name, sue me.

Success.

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