Escape From Shadow
Commander Paul White broke the surface of the ocean, clinging to the metal chain link of the ship’s anchor. My Lady’s Nest was a massive transport vessel that had just docked in Apapa Port after its thirty day journey from the Isle of Manne. Paul’s team had received news that the Captain, one Tunde Maheed, was harboring a shadow powered individual. It was their mission to secure this individual and capture Tunde for breaking the law.
The Ministry of Interior could have just raided the vessel with a standard DSS tactical team, but missions involving shadow energy required delicacy, secrecy and skill that only the Shadow Corp could deliver.
Only a few people in the world knew of the existence of shadow energy. Ever since the first case of people harnessing the power of darkness, the nations of the world in the secret gathering at the Hague three years ago, had decided to keep such information secret. Imagine the panic that would erupt when people found out that
Thing was, ever since the first sighting, many more people have been discovering this same ability to manipulate shadow energy. This led to the creation of an agency within the interior ministry of every nation that searches for these people that have manifested this ability and remove them from society. Having witnessed the damage shadow energy could do to the world as we know it, it was the decision of the powers that be to keep a lid on this.
In Nigeria, Shadow Corps is that agency that responds to shadow threats. Paul White was the lead agent at Shadow Corps. The Shadow Corps was a hundred man string organization within the Interior ministry that answered only to the Minister of Interior and the President of the Federal Republic and no one else.
Paul White’s Alpha Team consisted of ten shadow powered individuals, who were trained in using their ability to harness shadow energy as well as in tactical assault procedures. The Shadow Corps was not just an organization of a bunch of normal human beings. No, their tactical teams were made up of the same kind of people they were supposed to be capturing — shadow powered people. It was an iconic case of fighting fire with fire.
This was necessary because some of the people they went up against were down right nasty. You couldn’t defeat a shadow powered person with bullets. You need to use shadow energy and skillfully too.
“Team leads, come in,” Paul said as he climbed out of the cold water of Apapa Harbor and crawl up the iron anchor link up to the top deck of the ship. It was a few minutes past midnight and it was pitch darkness in the harbor. They had cut the power to this entire section before their approach so that they could take very good advantage of the darkness, knowing that the people in the ship will assume that NEPA had taken light. It was typical Nigeria, after all.
“Thomas, checking in,” came a voice in Paul’s ears. “We are in position and ready to move on your command, boss.”
Thomas Chudi was Paul’s second in command. He and a small team of four had snicked into the ship from the south end and were waiting for his command before they began their attack. They were probably hidden in a compartment.
“Irene, checking in,” came another voice. “Ready to proceed on your command, Commander.”
Irene Oghene and her team of two were in the harbor station. They had a DSS tac-team on standby with them and was ready to invade the ship with the authorities upon his signal. She was the reactionary force, in case things got too intense and they needed to bulldoze their way through.
“Scott in,” said a very tough voice. “Ready to execute.”
Scott Ogunleye was their spy. He was probably the most skilled shadow powered person Paul knew. He was also incredibly physically strong with large biceps and a body that made other guys turn green with envy and of course made the ladies swoon.
“Have you located the query?” asked Paul.
“I’ve searched two third of the ship,” replied Scott. “Nothing. But it seems that a portion of the ship on the lowers deck has been sequestered. That might be where they are keeping him.”
“Roger that,” Paul replied. “I’ll meet you in the lowest deck.”
“Boss, there’s something weird about this one,” Scott said, a tinge of worry in his voice.
Paul fell into a crouch and ran the entire length of the ship, sticking to the shadows until he got to a small hatch. Most of the sailors were on the other side of the ship. The manifest said there were a hundred people aboard. Since its arrival, only a few had been spotted coming or going from the ship. It led them to believe that majority of the people were somewhere within the ship. Probably holding AK47s and waiting to shoot.
“What is it, Scott?” he asked. He knew to listen to Scott anytime the guy was having misgivings. Scott was a very trusted member of the team, and his gut feelings were always right.
On the other hand, Paul and Scott went way back to their time together in NDA and in the Nigerian Military.
“I overhead a couple of the sailors talking,” Scott said. “They were speaking a foreign language. They were also armed with M7s.”
Paul froze as he pulled open the hatch and it was not from the loud creaks it made. “M- what?” he blurted.
“These aren’t your normal terrorists, sir,” Scott replied. “These are well armed, and probably well trained operatives.”
“And they have a powered individual with them?” Paul asked, his mind racing. He was thinking of all the possible reason why someone would want to bring in trained operatives to Nigeria.
“Assuming it’s only one,” Scott replied. “Because the room I suppose they have the powered individual kept is large enough to fit two hundred people.”
“Why keep one person in a space where you can fit two hundred people?” Paul asked.
“Something’s fishy,” Scott replied. “We need to pull back and work out our strategy. We might be walking into something bigger than us.”
“Negative,” Paul said immediately. “Stay put. I’m coming to you.
Then he felt distinctive click of an automatic rifle behind him. “Halt!” boomed a thickly baritone voice. “DO NOT MOVE!”
To be continued…