………..Oh hangover of hangovers, Oh dream of dreams!
I stagger out of bed, that song and her face in my head. Bleary eyed I feel my way to the bathroom. Rough night last night I notice as I squint at the haggard face in the mirror before me.
Oh Sympathy, why did you leave? We could have spent the night. But I bowed my head, remembering the past, I did not have the right.
This time would be different I vowed as I splashed my face awake. I will learn your secrets, yes I will, I will not be fooled again. I remembered her eyes when she left my side, they were filled with hurt and pain.
My holocom bracelet buzzed on the floor where I threw it off last night. Shit it’s the boss I realize as I pick it up. He’s tried to call before, 6 missed pings. He’s pissed off too, I can tell as his holo projects before me.
“Carter! What happened to looking after the celebrity! You were on duty god damn it!”
“Sorry boss. Brice…”
“Don’t give me that Brice crap. Brice is right here with me, where are you?”
“I’m at home boss. I’m not rostered ’till this arvo.”
“Why haven’t you had your holocom on! I’ve been trying to buzz you all morning. She’s missing. Sympathy is missing.”
“What? Huh?” my eyes are dark and heavy and I’m doing my best to only look half as hung over as I really am, but it’s not working. I scratch my head in confusion.
“You idiot! She’s been kidnapped. Mallium have kidnapped Sympathy. Do you hear me? Kalgan to Carter, are you reading?”
“What? I don’t understand. I was meeting her today. She can’t be. Are you sure?”
“What happened to guarding her last night you moron! We’ve received confirmation. Video footage from the lobby of her hotel. The three kidnappers have all been identified as members of Mallium. These guys are badass.”
I’ve completely sobered up now as the adrenalin courses through my veins at the mention of that group. Kidnappings, bombings, executions they were Mallium’s modus operandi.
“What do we do boss? We’ve got to save her.”
“Damn right we do Carter. Since you and your partner lost her, you and your partner better save her. Intergalactic security bureaucrats will be all over us like a rash before the day’s out. You guys have to get after her before they get here. You need to go now. Beam over here.”
“Where are we going boss, how are we going to find her?” I’m feeling torn apart inside. I finally meet a girl that shows even a little interest in me and blam, she gets kidnapped by the baddest bunch of planet hopping parasites this side of the Milky Way. I’m feeling distraught and guilty and I’m twisted up inside.
“Get over here now” the boss yells at me again as he notices me zoning out.
“Tobi, buddy.” It’s Brice, he moves into view besides the boss. How does he do that? Look so normal, he drank more than I did last night. He’s got an eager look on his face. Probably enjoying the excitement. He didn’t spend time with her like I did. I shake myself out of it as I pull on my boots. I notice Brice is holding something waving it at me.
“Tobes, she left you a note. We’ve got it here. She knew she was going to be kidnapped. She let it happen! Hurry come over and read it. She wrote you a letter, she given you clues how to find her!”
I’m stunned at the news, a heightened sense of purpose fills my body. Sympathy, stay strong, I’m coming to rescue you! Her last words ‘don’t let me down’ ring in my ears. I shake off my self doubt and punch in the teleport co-ordinates.
The last thing I see as I begin to dematerialise from my apartment is my door being kicked down by some mean dudes in black. The first one in the room eyeballs me and raises his gun to fire. I hear the shot ring out and………
……..to be continued………
Lyrics: The legendary M. Jagger and unstoppable K. Richards
All character references are fictitious, but may have been inspired by something. What you ask? All in good time.