Red Crisis: Chapter Six
Quick note: Sorry I forgot to post this until now! I had a longggg week... ;)
“We can’t kill her. We can’t. Besides, that’ll alert the FBI all over the country.”
Lisa stirred. The darkness enveloped her like a blanket. She was tired. Cecelia must have left the TV on. She thought about getting up to turn it off, but she was too exhausted.
“Oh, do you have a better idea then, Andrew?”
“I don’t want murder on my record. Spying isn’t against the law. Worst comes to worst we’ll get deported back to the motherland. I can live with that. Kidnapping is another matter, they’ll charge us for that. Who cares? Someone in Russia will get us out of it. But murder? Top that with espionage and kidnapping and it’s the frying pan for us!”
“Shut up, Slobozhanin!”
Lisa didn’t like whatever show was airing right now. It was too creepy. Maybe I should go and turn it off.
She tried to open her eyes, but they were too heavy, like something was holding them shut. I need to get to bed earlier, this trip is really tiring me out.
The show continued right on. The topic had switched.
“What about the other girl, Cecelia?”
Odd. This show had a girl with the same name as Lisa’s friend.
“Roskoldikov’s out looking for her now. When she figures out her friend’s missing it shouldn’t be too hard to drag her back. She treats this brat like a sister. Duraki! I can’t believe they got suspicious from a simple slip up on the envelope. Children! They’re always on the lookout for trouble, always so suspicious.”
“That’s what makes them the best candidates for the Motherland’s message of truth.”
“Don’t spew out propaganda to me. I know it by heart. Whose fault was the slip up anyways? The Kremlin has trained us all never to make a move that stupid.”
“Perhaps it was a green agent.”
“Green agent. Humph! I’ll wring the neck of whatever agent caused this mess.”
Lisa moaned and tried to turn over. The sheets were stuck too tight to the bed, though, and she couldn’t move. I don’t like this show, I wish Cecelia would wake up and turn it off!
There was silence from the TV, as if it heard her wishes.
“She’s waking up.”
“Which brings me back to the beginning once more; what-are-you-going-to-do-with-her?”
This was getting weird. The TV was in exact sync with everything Lisa was doing. It was beginning to scare her. Okay, I seriously have to get someone to turn this show off.
“Cecelia, would you turn the TV off?” Lisa whimpered. Her head began to hurt and she groaned again. “I have a headache.”
Still no answer.
Lisa’s heart began to race. She wondered what was wrong. Again she tried to get up, but she found she couldn’t. Her eyes wouldn’t open, she couldn’t move her legs. Panic seized her. Lisa began to jerk herself around harder. Oh dear God, am I paralyzed?
What was happening to her?
The voices were no longer faded, they were loud and close by. The sound of footsteps came towards her. She squirmed around.
“She’s awake. What should we do?”
“Well, I suppose all there is to do is find out how much she knows and how much she figured out from my stupid blunder in the classroom.”
Those voices. She knew them. She’d heard them every day this week. Who were they?
And…they were talking strange.
Strange as in… another language strange. They weren’t speaking English, and yet she could understand them…
It came back to her in a flash. She jolted, her senses becoming fully awake. Her heart slammed against her chest. No, no!
This couldn’t be happening to her! This wasn’t happening, it was a bad dream!
Cecelia had bolted right past Mr. Ross. Lisa had stood there in a daze, her mind trying to grasp what was going on and why Mr. Ross was in the school at midnight. Never mind they shouldn’t have been there either, but why Mr. Ross?
By the time Cecelia had gotten five feet away, Lisa put two and two together and realized her dire situation. Mr. Ross was not on their side.
It had been too late.
She’d gotten three steps before Mr. Ross caught her around the middle and clasped a hand over her mouth.
“Stop right now!” he’d yelled in Russian at Cecelia.
The next thing Lisa knew, he’d stuck something in her face and her entire world went black.
They drugged me, she reasoned. They drugged me and… and she wasn’t laying down. She was sitting up, her hands tied behind her back and her feet tied to two wooden posts. I’m tied to a chair. She was blindfolded too.
That didn’t last long.
Pain shot through her already aching head as the blindfold was ripped off her face. A light flashed into her eyes. She yelped and looked away, only to get slapped across the cheek.
“Look into the light!” Mr. Dover commanded in English.
Lisa didn’t want to. Another smack! told her she’d better, though, and she complied.
The light blinded her, she couldn’t see a thing. They’re doing this on purpose to scare you, they want to get information from you.
She tried to calm herself. Oh dear God, please, help me!
“Lisa Irving,” Mr. Dover snickered. His voice was right behind her. She shuddered, helpless to anything he was to say or do to her. “I worked hard to keep you out of this exchange program. The last thing we need is public school children being exposed to lawbreakers like you.”
Lawbreaker? And he was…?
“Diatchenko, are you sure this is necessary?” another voice spoke out in Russian.
Lisa recognized it. This was another one of the teachers. She couldn’t quite remember which one, though.
“Break down morale and you get to the core of things. This kid’s caused enough trouble, I’m going to make her suffer for it. Its revolutionaries like these, these stupid home educating freaks that cause half the setbacks we’ve experienced in our mission,” Mr. Dover, “Diatchenko”, replied in his native tongue.
Perhaps it was because of what he called her, or perhaps a bit of her spirit was coming back. Whatever the case, she couldn’t resist the anger that boiled up within her. Her friend Dima had taught her well. She could piece enough of the words they spoke to understand their sentences. They’d called her a freak. She wasn’t about to stand for that.
“I can understand every word you say. I speak Russian, too.”
Dead silence. The victory may have been short, but it was worth it. I’m not as dumb as you think, she thought.
“Really?” Diatchenko growled back. “Or did you learn a couple of “choice sentences” to impress your friends, and you’re just pretending you know what I’m saying?”
“If I didn’t understand you, how would I know you called me a “stupid home educated freak” and that you’re on a secret mission for the Kremlin?”
Okay, perhaps she’d gone too far with her defiance.
Diatchenko was at her throat, his hands squeezing every breath she had left. Lisa gasped and tried to jerk herself away, but she was firmly tied to the chair. Dear God, ple- please help me!
“You’re playing a dangerous game with me, girl! You don’t know who you’re up against,” he snarled. She began to choke and cough, but he wasn’t quite through yet. “So you think you’re smart because you know Russian? Fine. But if you value your life then you’ll answer my questions, or I will kill you with my bare hands. Am I clear?”
Everything was beginning to get dizzy for her. Diatchenko became two, then three separate figures. The light faded in and out. She could hardly concentrate.
“I said am I clear?”
With her last ounce of energy she nodded, and he released his hold. Lisa gasped for breath, her cries for air becoming sobs of fear.
Diatchenko snorted and moved back behind the glaring light once more.
“Well miss Lisa, if you’re so smart, translate this. Tell me, how much do you know about Operation Volga?”
She was in over her head. Unless Cecelia managed to escape the other KGB agent and get to the police, Lisa realized she may become the first American child to be murdered on United States soil by a Soviet agent.