Checkmate

By Abigale Prodance
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Abigale
 

As the detective entered the chapel, he could already smell the burning clothes that belonged to the foreign bishop. His eyes drew attention to a small cabinet located in the east wing of the altar. Fighting against the flames he opened it swiftly. A body collapsed on the floor, a body that belonged to an old man who had spent his life in servitude of God. Now all that was left of him were his burning wounds that had now covered all his body.

Dimitri Yeyneyev laid there in the smoke, almost dead. He looked at the detective for the very last time, as he extended his palm slowly and with a trembling pulse delivered an object to him. Detective Ray Lupter took the object from his palm, a wooden bishop enrolled in small map, he came to the conclusion that the brotherhood had come to kill the old bishop and he had hide in a small cabinet and even if the brotherhood hadn’t find him the spreading fire had. Moments later Dimitri Yeyneyev closed his tired eyes as life left his body. The detective knew what this meant, they already knew who had the legendary code and they were going steal it as quickly as possible.

Detective Ray Lupter, stood still, as his mind tried to comprehend what it actions he should make. Suddenly however, he remembered where he was, as the intense heat produced by the spreading fire all around him caused his sweat to drop back to the bottom of his chin. He had to run out of there as quickly as possible. Unfortunately for him at the same time, the door collapsed downwards and he could start to see the Church’s gate top completely covered with flames and fire.
He turned around; there was no safe way out of there, and the only exit he could see was a small window located near the rear end of the corner. He ran to it, and immediately bulged outward breaking all the glass into small fragments. He fell on top the cold, wet grass; trembling with excitement as he turned around just in time to see the old church collapse. Fortunately for him, he had grabbed what the bishop had wanted him to take. He now knew that the fate of the world relied completely on his ability to find the most hidden man on earth, before the brotherhood did. It was going to be the hardest mission, he had ever faced and yet he knew in a strange way that he had been preparing for it all his life.
He looked at the map that now resided in his hands; it was a map of a small town in Singapore, named Nazul. At least that’s what the title indicated him. Ray recalled the phone call, that he had established with the bishop earlier that morning.
“A man’s life is in great danger, I need for you to come tonight at 8:00 PM . There is something I must give to you.” The bishop said, spitting the words out as if they were prayers against an evil force.

“I don’t understand, what are you asking me to get into?” the detective had said. Worried about the deepness of the affair that looked so near to him at the moment.
“All I can tell you , is that you must look for a man named Gregory Chapman, I will hand a map to you, that indicates the precise location of this man. Rumor has it that this man possesses a code that if accessed through the IMF’s CS, the International Monetary Fund computerized system, then all debt control movements that the governments around the world now hold on to, will be lost and economical chaos would spread. We cannot let this happen, understand. I know that there is only one group capable of this chaos. This group goes by the name of The Brotherhood of Deter. They will find this man, kill him and take the code to eliminate all debts. Only you can find this man before they do. Once you do find him, keep him safe and take the code to the IMF they’ll know what to do with it.”
“But how do you know about the existence of the brotherhood?” asked Lupter.
-“I first knew it as an anticlerical group that sought hand in hand the disappearance of the church, as they blamed us for all the world’s problems. One of them a young man that had humble intentions told us about their existence, and that they were plotting to assassinate the Pope. He told us that there were very influential people in the brotherhood, he told us that their power was growing without limits, of course a few ours later we heard that the brotherhood had taken care of him, the police found his body stabbed in some alley with the symbol of the brotherhood. So we have tried to get as much information as we could but obviously they knew that we had heard about the conspiracy to assassinate the Pope so they left the plan only to turn to another one as evil as the past one. The plan consisted of the only thing that could guarantee the complete destruction of the world’s economy. A group of spies working for the Vatican, recorded a conversation only two days ago where some of the members discussed the plot to assassinate a man under the name of Gregory Chapman in order to steal the code he possessed only to access the IMF and erase all debts owned by countries to other countries and by individuals to all associations throughout the world. This meant that any person that owned money to the bank or to any other organization then the debt would be erased and they would lose the track of who owns what.
-“We have to stop them at once.” The detective said without hesitation.
-“Yes we do have to stop them. Come tonight, and I will give you Chapman’s precise location, which I do not even know at the moment. I must call some of my contacts, and for my safety I will leave town tomorrow morning, goodbye.”
Ironically, the old bishop had chosen him to take charge of this mission. He knew that in Ray Lupter many talents resided in him and in a ways so apprehensible that it was impossible for him not to be the correct man for the job. He was brave and yet he was well aware of when the situation was too risky for him to make a move. Only he could find Gregory Chapman.

Gregory Chapman had been catalogued as the hardest man to find by the CIA and the FBI altogether. He had been a convicted drug addict in the 80’s and as a consequence of leaving jail he decided to start a small business of blackmailing famous celebrities along with important personalities. Gregory got to know many of the people in charge of pretty much all drug, weapon and other type of trafficking throughout the world.

Sooner or later he came about with a man that was said to hold the key of the world’s economy. That man was Fred Griffin unofficially the richest man in the world. He was using all of the money that he was supposed to have been used to save the people dying of AIDS in Africa, the hunger rising throughout Asia or the finance for the victims of terrorism that had been left with no mother or father. He had used all that money to buy mansions wherever he pleased, he had a fine collection of the best cars in Europe, all suits that money could buy, he collected wild animals, he paid security as no one else did.

Several people where aware that this was happening, so they decided to call Gregory to blackmail him into giving them the code to control the money. Basically what Gregory did, was to make him an offer he couldn’t refuse as stated in the Godfather. He went to Fred and pointed a shotgun towards his temples, he started shaking like an engine the moment he fell the cold steel edge of the barrel.
Gregory was given the access code as a way of promotion, however it was at this same moment that he felt remorse of his past actions. He didn’t enjoy the direction that his life had just taken place. He felt terrible, in fact he was completely over the problem. He took the code and ran away to South Africa where the government gave him a new identity and protection.

He changed countries every two weeks, very unreliable he had all the money he could wish and yet he lived in the lowest incomes. He knew a tremendous amount of people as he had been in the blackmailing business for over eight years. He was now aware that the first threat of danger had arrived. Chapman was drinking his dried martini very smoothly that Sunday night in the frosted Iceberg. He certainly enjoyed to watch the late jazz auditions that happened at this quite and retired place.

That night, a man under the name of Benton Mills was playing the trumpet quite smoothly. The notes came out as lightning comes out from the clouds. The man was improvising with all his might, Gregory was enjoying the expression in his face as he went up and down the pentatonic scales playing blues rhythms.
The vision of the playing man started fading little by little. Chapman thought to himself, must I be drunk already? Maybe its just the feeling of sleepiness that won’t leave my body. Ever since he had run away he felt persecuted and he never really got a sense of rest at night after that strange day.

He stood up, ready to return to his room for the night, however in that precise moment he saw the face of one of the assassins. He had previously done some research on the brotherhood of Deter only to make sure that he wasn’t being followed. He had not noticed any one of them, until that very night at that bar. The killer was smiling, he knew that Chapman had recognized him, he was looking him in the eyes almost laughing at the lost fate of the poor man.

Chapman couldn’t understand why he was laughing, there was really no explanation behind it he thought to himself. He must be a crazy bastard to belong to that perverted brotherhood. He started walking towards the man, but in his fourth step, he felt an aching pain in his chest. Never before in his life had he felt such a destructive sensation, he was done. Chapman hit the floor, as everyone started turning their heads towards the scene, the martini cup laid in the table, with a little white powder near the olive, the powder being nekton peroxide, the most deadly venom if ingested orally.

The killer was laughing to himself as he left the entrance, as he didn’t think that it would have been that easy. The brotherhood now needed to find that code.
Lupter was getting his luggage from the upper head compartment in the long and people packed plane. He had arrived finally to Nazul and was now going to look for a quite bar called The Frosted Iceberg. There, a man would be sited in the corner, drinking his martini, this man would be Gregory Chapman. He ordered a green taxi as soon as he stepped on the dusty street outside of the airport.

The taxi took him to the bar, everything was going according to plan.
He opened the crystal doors of the entrance, the coldness crept to his fingertips and shivers ran throughout his arms. In the corner was a man, wearing a dark hat. He was drinking a martini, and as soon as he gave one more step forward, the man turned around to look at him. He was smiling almost as he were laughing intensely at him.

Lupter felt a sense of awkwardness at the man, he didn’t seem to be as he had imagined. The man looked evil, as if there was a snake hidden inside his body ready to jump up at Ray the minute he approached. He thought for a moment that this man may have been evil since he had been a convict once. That he shouldn’t feel frightened at his sight, so he took the courage to continue walking towards the man.
The assassin was laughing, Lupter had finally arrived. He would never expect the surprise that was coming for him. The detective approached his couch, and the killer asked “Why don’t you take a seat, Mr. Lupter”
“There’s not much time, the detective responded. Why don’t you just tell me where the code is, so I can turn it in as quickly as possible.”
“I’m afraid I can’t do that yet, there is something you are unaware” The killer said, in a quite tone.

“Haven’t you heard, Dimitri is dead. He’s dead because there’s some very important people looking for this code. You are the only one holding the code, both of our life’s are in great danger, not to mention the fact that the future of the world is now in our hands too and your trying to tell me to calm down. We’ll I think that either you must have an excellent reason for it, or you’re a stupid drunkard that lives off in exile.” As he ended the sentence, he noticed how the man he thought to be Chapman, drew out a small jeringe from his right side pocket.

Ray Lupter didn’t know whether to run, or to confront the killer. In a matter of no time he decided to go for the second option. He endured his right knuckle as he plunged the edge of his elbow into the killer’s stomach. This made him drop the jeringe immediately but he took a complete run. All of the people turned around to see the two of them disappear into an obscure hallway.

Ray was sweating as he persecuted the only man that existed in his sight, this was probably the same man who killed Dimitri, one of his best friends and advisers. He could not let him go, he couldn’t. Lupter had a weapon as he could transport it to Singapore on the plane, he had the license for it. He was very good when it came to using a weapon to defend his or anybody’s life.

Lupter entered a small room in the east wing of the hotel, he saw the killer standing quietly in the corner of the room. He looked calm, maybe to calm for the detective so he took out his gun. Ray Lupter was sweating as he pointed the gun towards the killer’s heart. It had all seemed so fast and sudden. He knew that if he didn’t come up with a way to distract the killer he would never get out of there with the key of where the code would be.

The killer made a passive gesture with his eyes, as if he already knew what was about to happen. Then he got out a cigarette and lid it up with a match that he took out of his shirt pocket.

“Don’t you dare do anything tricky now.” the detective assured him.
The killer turned around to look at Ray, he smiled in his always degrading expression. He opened his mouth, only to blow a smoke loop.

As he blew with all his might, a cloud of smoke emerged and headed towards the direction of the detective. “Thank you” was all that he heard afterwards, because after the fog disappeared there was no trace to be seen of the killer.”
However what he did see, was the wooden bishop that had been given to him earlier that day. He had probably dropped it while he was chasing the mysterious killer. As he took it from the ground, he noticed how something inside the piece galloped and bounced from one side to another. The detective started toying with the piece moving it from one side to the other, he could feel something bouncing against the walls.

Immediately he went towards the tools and doctorial store near the lobby of the hotel. When he arrived he asked the man for a small hammer so as to open the wooden bishop in two. The man attending the store looked at him curiously, he was probably asking to himself Why the hell does this man want a hammer for? Well he had to give the man the hammer, so he just took it from the small tool box and gave it to him.

Detective Lupter just cracked it open with a precise and surgical preciseness. Inside it, there was a small message written on an enrolled papyrus that was about 1 or 2 cm long, the detective stared at the message. It is too late, he will get killed before you arrive, the code is in a piece of paper behind the main crucifix in Saint Galilea’s Church. The detective felt a wave of relief come over him as he read the message for the second time. He was going to get the message before they did, now he had the advantage of the hidden message.

The assassin was now following the detective as he entered the Church of Saint Galilea, he was thinking that the detective was probably playing a trick on him because it was just to easy, wait for him to get the code and then kill him.
Lupter continued walking through the ile, he could see the faces of the women praying for protection from a higher God. He knew that those prayers where the same as what he now wanted, he was in fact praying for protection himself. He knew that someone was probably following him at this precise moment, maybe it was too late already. He went near the crucifix, took a look around just to make sure that in fact he wasn’t being followed. Then he took out the gun from his pocket and fired a round of three shots in the ceiling.

All of the people that used to remain in the church now left immediately, thus the detective felt as he could take the code out of the Crucifix back. He removed a paper that laid in the back, he took it out. He stared in amazement, to think that this little piece of paper could put in jeopardy the fate of many lives, that made it look so powerful.

He looked at the code, lloe98675jdkeugbkae8473 this code was the ultimate one, he was pretty sure of it. The letters and numbers made no sense at all to him, there was no way that without the code anyone could access the IMF’s debt control rate.

The killer smiled as he took the sniper rifle from the black case, he dismantled every piece only to put them back together into a deadly harpoon. He was on top of the window, the shot would be easy to make, first in the knee so that he could confess it all to him, then he could shoot him in the forehead as he would be of no use later on.

He stood looking through the target at the detective, he watched him stood in amazement at the piece of paper. How stupid of the detective, the killer thought. Then without hesitating he aimed directly at his kneecap and pressed the trigger as a small rounded bullet went through the skin piercing all the remaining of the tissue near the detective’s knee.

The detective felt an a ripping feeling in the upper part of his left leg. He feel to the floor immediately without being able to control himself. He turned around as a man approached him, the same man that had conflicted him earlier that afternoon. The killer was still smiling, he felt an anger that had never before been present in his body.

The detective took out the gun from behind, only to let it rest for a moment in his palm. The silver cutting in his knuckles brought him a sense of security. The killer took out a thin wire from his coat, with a folding edge and a trigger in the middle of it. It was the most advanced sniper rifle that the detective had ever seen.
“Where did you get the gun yourself or did the brotherhood also proportioned it to you?” The detective asked.

“That’s where you are completely wrong. The killer replied laughing from his inside. There was never a brotherhood, let me explain myself. You see I told bishop Dimitri that there was a brotherhood only to fake my death the very next day. Then he would lead me to Gregory Chapman, which contained the code that I had mourned for a very long time. I killed Dimitri as I invented a story that the brotherhood hadn’t finally killed me, but then I was forced to kill him so as to cover my identity. Then I went after Chapman knowing that you were coming as the bishop had told me. Then it was really easy, because I pretended to disappear and return to the brotherhood when I was following your moves all the time. I could have killed you a long time ago.

“Well so could I, but know I will.” The detective said almost in a secret as he took his automatic and fired about twenty or thirty rounds of shots to the poor man. He was dead after the noise had finished.

Two or Five minutes later the church was filled with paramedics as Lupter took hold of the code himself. He was taken to a hospital in order to recuperate his ill looking wound. Then he faced the easy task of returning the code to the IMF. Which he did and won a police academy prize for his brilliant labour. He is still recognized until today as one of the best individual detectives in the United States.

 

 

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