I woke up in a room. I do not know where. There is some furniture, but nothing out of the ordinary. There is a door to the left at the other end of the room away from the single bed. I try to remember, but I can’t. I do not know who I am. I think hard but nothing concrete comes to mind. I seem to remember things, but they are hazy and I do not know if they were real or dreams I had.
There were several medical operations. I am lying on my back surrounded by doctors. I remember convalescing. I put my hand into the front of my shirt and without thinking about it, I can trace several raised lines – surgical scars. I took off my shirt and I can see the thin scars. The operations must have been real. I remember a doctor now, describing the procedure – several in fact, parts removed, parts re-arranged, parts inserted.
I remember a passport, schematics of buildings, names of streets, I do not know where. I have a headache. I think I will lie down a little. Maybe I will take a little rest
. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
I am still in the same room. Now I remember more. Training like my life depended on it. Bright overhead light. I could not see. But I know there was a man just beyond the light saying something to me. What, I can’t remember. I remember the passport. I remember the picture. I remember his face. The target. Weak, fleshy neck, no physical exertion. Soft.
I remember what I was meant to do. I don’t remember why. I get up from the bed, and moved slowly towards the door. What was on the other side? I opened it gradually, but I know instinctively that no one was there. It was a sitting room, with a dining and a kitchen incorporated. Am I supposed to be hungry? I opened the fridge, there is food and drinks
. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
There is an acronym: D.E.C. What does it mean and why is it important? D.E.C. – distract, execute, confirm/certify?
I am the Certifier. There were 3 of us. The other two were the Distractor and the Executor. All were dispensable. But I am alive, so the project must have succeeded?
I remember the target. His security detail, a gargle of inexperienced bumblers pretending to be the secret service.
What was the objective? It’s all hazy. There is a newspaper on the small glass table in the living room. I pick it up and his picture is on the front. Apparently he is dead. Shot. Some arrests have been made but no leads as yet as to “who, how or why?”. I think the why is obvious, but maybe not. I do not care for such things. I have a task. I do. But the intelligence points to a man disconnected from reality, hated, scorned. The “how” may be found out with some serious “outside” help. The “who”, never. I remember his stats: his resting heart rate, his pulse, his blood pressure, his weight, his allergies, his weaknesses. Why? I am the Certifier. I must know.
I remember now. I have a throbbing headache. It doesn’t help.
It was impossible to get within striking distance of him with a gun: it wasn’t needed. His inept security detail will provide one if necessary.
The Distractor, efficient, adaptable. A pill under his tongue. Once in position, bites down hard. He is “apparently” dead of a heart attack in a minute. The crowd, and as expected, the security detail show their inexperience: they get distracted – briefly. But the little opening of less than a minute was all that’s needed. The opening created by people bending to look at the “dead”, the security detail, hesitating, trying to figure out if there was a threat to the target. I can imagine the Executor looking through the scope, a slight movement of a finger, sending a little projectile with a special payload hurtling through space, covering the 600 yards or so distance to the target in a split second.
I was there when the target went down. Disbelief on his minders faces. I was on my knee beside the body. A practiced eye and two fingers on his wrist even before he knew he was dead. He was. If he wasn’t, I had the contingency plan: my next course of action. With the minders crowding in, I select one without hesitation, a blow just below the diaphragm, or jab to the throat or a tap to the side of the head. I reach into his jacket and withdraw his piece before his eyes glaze over and he hits the ground. Three shots ring out: one to the chest and another to the head of the target, the third goes in my mouth and exits behind my ears taking the back of my head with it. But that didn’t happen. Didn’t need to. The Executor was as usual, on target.
I am the Certifier. I am expendable. But I live. I am here, so …