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The Mars Incident by Richard P Bradshaw

By RichardBradshaw All Rights Reserved ©

Children / Scifi


The CIA is not happy. A young boy, Steve, from some private prodigy school hacked their impenetrable quantum computer. Not only are they embarrassed, if they prosecute, they look bad. A killer on Mars is using computers to create fatal accidents. The CIA manipulates Steve into going there to hack the computers. Space Camp makes for a good cover only the camp is all girls and his roommate is two years older, bigger and an escaped convict. Space pirates are after her. Steve has never been kissed.

Chapter 1

I’m smart. Not only am I smart, I’m the smartest in a school of smarties. My specialty is quantum computers. Next year I’ll graduate from both university and high school at the same time. My university thesis is already defended and I’ll be old enough to get a driver’s licence too. You would figure I should be smart enough to get a date.

Jennifer motioned me over as I walked into class before morning bell. She was hot and to flaunt it, always wore a mini skirt and or a semi see through shirt. If Epsilon High had been big enough to have a sports team, she would have been head cheerleader. She was two years older as I’d skipped twice and she was four inches taller too. She treated me like her kid brother.

She dated the guy that would have been the football quarterback if we had a football team. He was two years behind where he should have been. He wasn’t smart. His parents were rich. He was six foot three, 195 pounds and zero body fat. He had his own sports car. He treated me like Jennifer’s kid brother too. The only good about the whole thing was no one bullied me.

“Cops in the principal’s office,” she said just above a whisper.

The other reason no one bullied me was I had hacked the school records after being pushed around by a bully. I failed him. The principal caught it and changed it back but by then he was months behind and struggling to keep his grade. Was it revenge? Yes, but I justified it, calling it self-preservation. Everybody knew I could hack anything and that included his or her bank account and social web page. Sometimes I did it just to let everybody know I could.

Epsilon High is a private school for gifted students. It’s expensive, but I had a scholarship from dad’s work conditional on my grades.

The teacher came in and said. “Steve, the principal would like to see you.”

“It’s only 9:00 o’clock. I haven’t had time to do anything bad yet.”

It was not the first time I’d been called to the principal’s office. I got a bit of a snicker. I checked to see if Jennifer smiled.

I grabbed my backpack and made a grand exit like someone that had been shaving twice a day for years, owned a sports car and had just saved the world. There was no rule that said I had to act only 15 even if I’m not allowed a drivers licence until next year.

On the way, I stopped at the washroom. Principals have a way of interrogating you by keeping you waiting while you have to pee. I’d read of the technique in detective novels. He wasn’t going to be able to use it against me. I wasn’t going to spill my guts out under threat of wet pants.

I walked into to the secretary’s office. She was pretty. It was hard to keep from staring at her. She smiled a perfect smile, “Just a moment Steve. He has someone with him.”

I sat in a chair too small with a flip desktop that wouldn’t flip out of the way. I didn’t have long to wait.

“You can go in now Steve.” She had a velvet voice. She had perfect teeth.

The principal was an OK guy as principals go. He didn’t strike me as evil or anything but I didn’t think we would ever be buddies. He was a large man, dominating the room with his height and his width. He had a piercing voice and rarely used a microphone.

Beside him stood an odd man dressed in an elegant suit. I tried to remember the last time I’d seen anyone wear a suit. There was a badge hanging from his lapel.

“Hello Steve, I’m Josh Johnson, CIA”

He held out his hand and I shook it. He had a presence I knew not to mess with.

“When I was your age I was kind of known for my hacking abilities as well.”

Uh Oh.

Agent Josh Johnson gave a piercing smile that I had to return.

The principal, now not needing to do introductions closed the door behind me. There sitting together were my parents holding hands.

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