Friday, March 16, 2007

Story 14

[NOTE: This is part of a progressive story. The first entry is here. Check the blog label 2007Story for all entries]

     The Commander listened intently to the discussion between Mr. York and Mr. Call. He already knew all about the arrest of Sam Spears. In fact, he knew before anyone else at the school. This wasn't too strange since he was largely responsible for the arrest. He had decided to stake out the Johnson home the previous night, hoping Blake might wander by and confirm his suspicions. When he saw Sam sneaking around the corner, his heart leapt.

     There had been a request to the Commander recently asking for some help ensuring a certain Sam Spears was not in the starting line up this basketball season. The Commander wasn’t about to sabotage his own team, but the request came from a very influential family who had their own player in mind to take his place. After watching the prospect play and getting an earnest payment up front, the Commander agreed to work on getting Sam benched.

     At first, the Commander spent time looking for ways to sabotage Sam's grades. He’d spent some resources and favors setting Sam up with a prize basket that sent him out on enough activities that he would be distracted from a few vital reports and study sessions. Somehow he managed to pull his grades through anyway. This seemed like a perfect opportunity to get that ball rolling again.

     In an added bit of genius, the Commander made sure to mention that he was sure he had seen this same boy sneaking around the Johnson house a week ago, during the time corresponding to their mysterious disappearance. No matter how inept he felt the police force was, he was sure his tip would result in an open missing persons investigation with Sam Spears as a primary suspect.

     The Commander listened for a few minutes to the discussion between Sam and Mr. Call but turned his attention elsewhere when he realized it wasn't proving terribly interesting. He would listen again later when the police grilled him.

     In the meantime, he watched the blip of Blake Percival wander around the school. He was wondering if he had been wrong about Blake. The tail he had put on Blake yesterday only reported that he went straight home from school and hung out in his garage for a while with some other kids from school, presumably doing homework since they each left with what looked to be some formal report. Later that evening he had gone to the electronics shop on Main Street but didn't buy anything.

     An additional phone call from Tom let the Commander understand the true reason for the trip to the electronics store. Tom’s faithful phone call made up for his stupidity regarding the photos of Daniel Call that morning. It seemed Blake was a resourceful opponent. He knew he was being tracked. He most certainly knew it was the Commander’s doing. The question was what he intended to do about it.

     And now, here he was at school, moving slowly around the halls between class, leaving a few minutes early from each class thanks to the note from Mr. Call but not arriving late anywhere and not straying from a direct path at all. The Commander decided to keep watching him closely another day and then to focus more fully on the Johnson matter, but something inside him still told him that Blake was up to something.

     But what?

     He hoped to find the answer to that question later in the day. He was a bit surprised the night before to get a message indicating that Anthony Jacobs had requested a meeting with an agent. Tony had provided a note. A free pass to meet with the Commander and potentially join in the ranks without question. The Commander had set up an appointment with one of his underlings, not thinking much of it. But then, upon speaking with Tom again, he learned that Tony had been with Blake in the electronics store as they examined the tracking device. Whatever Blake’s plans were, Tony knew about them. Which meant, the Commander would know about them before long.

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