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Running Scared

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The Right Choices

Peters decided to be as stealthy as he could in getting to Thorne's apartment. He parked his car in the next street to avoid the off chance of Thorne spotting it. It was a middle class area and was as good as it gets in a city where the air is always full of dust smoke. He made his way to the entranceway of the apartment block and looked up through the smog filled sky to see the top floor of the building. Peters sighed hard. He wanted to see Thorne so badly but deep in the recesses there was a little voice praying hard that Thorne wasn't up there, that he was out on some business or even better, had left forever. But Peters knew that that he was just dreaming and that he'd have to go up there and confront him. Peters checked his guns were ready and walked inside.

As he walked towards the elevator at the end of the hallway, Peters noticed the mailboxes for the apartment block to his right. According to the names on the boxes, a Mr. Leary was renting out the apartment Thorne was staying in. An obvious cover name, Thorne was taking all the basic precautions. Peters walked into the lift and keyed in the floor.

The doors shut with a cold sound. The ten-second lift-ride seemed to last ten years, the humming noise of the lift in the background. It was as if all of Peters' fears of how this meeting would turn out were trapped in the small room. A high pitched ding signaled the decade's end. The lift doors slid open and Thorne's door lay beyond it…open.

In less then a second Peters had his guns drawn and his senses wary, something was wrong. Thorne was never the kind of man to leave his door open to strangers and he wasn't the type of guy who'd change his ways. Creeping slowly through the doorframe into the dark apartment Peters could almost taste the tension. The room was decorated with a few old movie posters, (a hobby of Thorne's), some sketches and a multitude of used coffee mugs. The lights were off and it was pitch black apart from the glow of the neon signs coming from the windows. Peters looked around and saw nothing dangerous and moved towards the light switch two steps in front of him.

That's when the cold metal of a gun pressed into the back of his neck.

"Hey there Tony, long time no see." Thorne said in his usual cinematic hero voice that Peters hadn't heard in so long.

"Hey Alan", Peters replied.

"You do realise what a fucking rookie mistake you made man, not looking behind the door. Damn I thought I trained you to be the best!"

"You did", Peters whispered.

Peters swung his arm round and smashed it against the gun and Thorne's face. Then he dropped low and slammed a kick into his leg. As the older man fell to the ground Peters stood up straight and aimed his right pistol at Thorne's face. Peters finally got a good look at him.

Thorne had hardly changed. He was little more aged but apart from that he was the same. He even still had that look in his eye, a look of strength and vitality.

"Shit, I did teach you good," Thorne said to the man pointing a gun at his head. "Well since my brains aren't splattered on my nice upholstery carpet I suppose you came to talk. Well what is it Tony, what have you come to talk to your old partner about?"

"Your new contracts on those Tyrell employees."

"My new what? Sorry I didn't catch that, I must be losing my hearing"

"I said-"

Thorne's foot caught Peters right in the chest. He landed on the floor with a thump but his gun remained aimed at his target. However it had given Thorne time enough to pull his own weapon up to face his opponent. The two men lay on the ground staring at each other their pistols outstretched.

"This is much better. You were saying Tony?" Thorne said in a charming tone of voice.

Peters, a bit winded from the kick, replied, "Those three targets you're after they're not skin jobs, you've been set up."


"It's not Alan, I swear to God it's not..."

"What the fuck are you talking about Tony? I saw their incept files. You can't get better proof then that."

"Those weren't their incept files Alan. They were the files for their copies"

"You had better start speaking fucking sense Tony. 'Cos I don't understand."

"You do know one of your targets is dead right?"

"Yeah, Lee. Suicide. He found out what he was and did the right thing."

Peters spoke through the pain. "He did jump but he didn't do the right thing Alan, and do you wanna know why? 'Cos he wasn't a Goddamn rep, he was an average guy like you or me"


"There was a real Michael Lee and your other two targets are also real people and those were real incept files. But those incept files you saw were for the doppelgangers of your given targets. Doppelgangers who only Tyrell's top-level staff know about. Doppelgangers whose files are hidden in the Snake database. Doppelgangers with no four-year life span boundary. Your customer, the blonde woman, gave you those incept files before eliminating any trace of them on the Tyrell mainframe. The real Lee was unlucky and got a peek at those files before doing the right thing. You were told to kill the reps but all the information she's given you on their whereabouts and such was going to send you to kill innocent people"

Thorne lowered his gun and his face looked like a truck had hit him.

"Jesus", he whispered. "But why?"

"As a frame"

"No that's not right"


"In those documents she gave me it said to make sure that there was never any trace of a body or anything likely to start questions. To make it seem like the 'targets' had just disappeared. If this was a frame, she'd want to make sure the bodies of the victims would be found."

"This is all making less and less sense. She wants you to eliminate three Tyrell employees who all have doppelgangers, without leaving a trace of the bodies. Who is this woman?"

"She's a Brit named Alexia Ruebyk, she works for Omni Biogenics, one of my best customers."

"And who are your other two targets?"

"A couple of guys in Lee's department, Glenn Mironova and Byron Joseph."

"Well now you know the truth about who they are they're safe now. But we have got to find out what this woman wants and what the fuck is going on."

"Damn straight, no sadistic bitch tries to get me to kill innocent people and gets away with just a warning. She is going to talk."

"Yeah, let's go"

"Woah, woah woah, wait one damn minute, what do you mean with all this "we" and "let's go" shit? We're not partners"

"I thought-"

"Just shut up. I'm fucking with you. Of course we've got to work together. It's just nice hearing you talk like we're a team again. I haven't heard for a long time. So we go find out what the fuck's going on right? Partner?"

He stretched out his hand across the floor to Peters. Peters took it and shook it.

"Partners. Now let's go find out what she knows."



Option 1 - Peters and Thorne on the case

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Date: 2002-05-19 19:45