A 7.00 am, Fallon parked his car in its allotted space and after pausing at a delicatessen to pick up fresh baked muffins, orange juice and fill a flask with coffee, he walked downhill toward the courtyard.
The Global Solutions offices were on the third floor. There was an elevator, but Fallon used the stairs. He picked up the newspapers from the slot by the door, went inside and took a seat at his desk.
At 8.00 am he logged onto his computer and commenced work. Helen his secretary and office manager, came in At 9.00 on the dot, and after coffee and a chat with Fallon got down to work. With her efficiency, diligence and dry sense of humour, she kept the office ship shape and in order and proved a Godsend to Fallon simply because she knew where everything was.
Simon Pierce and John Peters arrived together at 9.30. Tom Collins joined them at 9.45. Mike Maudsley came through the door at 10.00, late as usual. "The the traffic coming down was bloody awful," he said. "It was almost stationary, bumper to bumper." This earned him smiles all round. Fallon led them into the meeting room and they took their seats at the table. "You've all read the dossier on Abbas al Suleiman, I take it?" There were nods all round. "It's not yet confirmed, but he's number one suspect in the recent atrocities. As you know we've been offered the job of stopping him; permanently. At first I was inclined to turn it down flat as beyond our scope. I also thought the risks were far too high. A private security company caught doing such things would be quickly put out of business. But since these atrocities I've given it more thought."
Pierce grinned. "And you've decided to go ahead?" he said.
Fallon smiled and shook his head. "I need unanimous support before I do that, Simon. That's why we're here."
"Hang on," Maudsley said. "If the Izzies tried to hit him six times and failed what chance have we?"
Fallon smiled. "True. But the Israelis are restricted. Their hands are tied. It's been that way since they hit the wrong man in Lillehammer, Norway in 1973. The days of easy killings abroad are over for them. We have no such restrictions. But I'm not thinking of a hit. I was thinking of taking him alive. A big difference."
"More difficult," John Peters said.
Fallon grinned. "Much more, John, but far more satisfying. Consider this. As you know the FBI have put five million dollars on his head dead or alive, but preferably alive. But if we hit him, Global Solutions could not claim the hit for obvious reasons, so we would lose out on that reward. But the Israelis say they would pay us in lieu, under the table so to speak. Now, if we take him alive and hand him over to the US, we could claim it and take the FBI reward. And possibly the Israeli payment as well."
"Clever," Pierce said.
Fallon leaned forward palms down on the table. "There is something you should know that's not in the dossier. Many years ago, the Israelis placed a microchip in Abbas al Suleiman; a GPS microchip."
Peters laughed. "I take it he's unaware?"
"Of course not. They had him in custody. He was hospitalized with wounds. And they put it in."
"They always know his position then?"
"I like it," Peters said.
Yes, it's neat," Fallon said. "The way it stands, the Israelis will guide us. Passing to us his whereabouts and other relevant info as required. But I'm not entirely happy with that. If we go ahead, a condition I intend to make is, we get to use the software technology to track al Suleiman ourselves. From this office."
"What if they decline?" Collins said.
"Then the deal is off. And we go back to chasing sea pirates, minding oil sheikhs and training Special Forces in South East Asia."
"And if they accept?"
Fallon smiled. "This calls for a show of hands. I say if they accept we go for it. Those in favour raise your right hand." All raised their hands. And then Fallon raised his. "Unanimously carried."
Fallon called Danny Arnan and requested the tracking software. "To pursue this man we need that ability, Danny. We need the software."
"James, I wish I could deliver, but it's not my call."
"But you'll try?""My very best, I promise you that. I'll do it today, but I guarantee nothing."
"I'll wait for your call," Fallon said.