TALES OF THE MONGREL
by Ralph Arata
SPECIAL NOTE TO OUR READERS - I apologize for the last Tall Tales. Barney and I were testing better ways to communicate electronically and the “a draft” version of the article was printed by mistake. I have “abridged” Part I below and then added Part in its entirety.
Part I of III - “abridged”
Anderson sat on a park bench just off of Independence Avenue. From the corner of his eye the BIG FED could see the Capital Building, its imposing white fascia illuminated by the “Hills” lawn lights. He tried to concentrate on the stock reports on the paper he held in front of him, but his mind was elsewhere - and the damp chill of the Washington air didn’t help.
A black limousine pulled to the curb just in front of him. The front door opened - 2 CIA agents exited the limo and greeted him. “Mr. Anderson, it is certainly a pleasure to meet you”. “However, you know we have to check you anyway”. Anderson sighed and said “No problem”. Even the US Justice department’s CEO had to succumb to protocol. Anderson stepped into the limo and sat. “Good evening, Mr. President”, he said.
“Don, we have a situation and 72 hours to correct it”. “Plans for the new stealth fighter-bomber are unaccounted for....based on circumstances we know they have been stolen”! “Dr. Kaplan never made it to his assignment this morning at Fort Meade”. “His NSA assigned agents were both found dead at his apartment”.
Anderson’s tied eyes widened. “Not the NC3 Fighter”! The President looked away....outside the window to the dark damp sky above. As if he was seeking some divine guidance. “Yes Don, the NC3”! “It would render our current stealth technology useless”. “A well-financed terrorist group would rule the skies and be able to deliver nuclear or chemical catastrophe anywhere in the world”.
“Don, I want the NEUTRALIZER, I want him NOW and I want him in Yugoslavia where we believe Kaplan and his kidnapper, Sir William Hendricks, to be”! “Don, you have my full cooperation and the NSA at you disposal”.
3 hours later Ralph Arata a.k.a. the Neutralizer sat aboard a B-2-B stealth bomber. He was capsulated, below decks, in a self contained, high altitude gear ready for his 15,000-foot dive back to planet earth. Just beyond him was the “Mongrel”, a 1970 MBG, hand built back at the “Farm”, a super secret Justice Department compound tucked deep in the Allegheny Mountains. The Neutralizer and the Mongrel were on their way to Splatato, Yugoslavia ....… ……continuing…… .
……. (Later in the story)…….”Green light, Colonial...GO”!! The belly hydraulics yawned and the Neutralizer fell into black space, deep and endless. A corridor of euphoria, of quiet concentration. The Neutralizer could feel the “trauma” plates of his X77 body amour press against his skin cold and hard! And that was the way it would be. Take Hendricks down, cold and hard. The Neutralizer knew the time and place of the exchange of the NC3 plans. What he didn’t know was the how, except that it would occur during an antique road race that was an annual event through the coastal thoroughfares from Splatato to Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia. ………
…….The Neutralizer could see the ghostly-white mist of the airfield rush up to greet him. He could see the Mongrel approx. 50 yards north of where he would land. His combat boots hit the earth. He landed in a controlled role and came up standing, releasing his chute.
Then it happened - all hell broke loose! The Neutralizer found himself in the middle of a killing field with muzzle flashes coming from several directions. A true “hell-zone” and the devil were coming to greet him personally!
He donned his Echo-Z night vision goggles and immediately saw 2 dozen, no, more like 3 dozen black clad soldiers coming for him. The attacking mercenaries appeared whitish-green against a green-gray background. The Neutralizer threw himself down scrambling for the cover of a low crop of rocks. Divots struck the earth all about him. Suddenly, the hammer blow of a 9mm parabellum struck his side and he twisted in pain. 2 more hammer blows slammed to his chest and the Neutralizer was catapulted up and on his back.
............it had become quiet. The lights flashed, then dimmed and then went out. Thoughts floated away, lost forever into the great black void! Some fog, no perhaps smoke and then nothing. Nothing to see or hear....or do. Just nothing. It was black. Dead black.....and I was suddenly alone.
A voice called from distance, I could barely hear it but it was there. Heavenly in a sense, but then angry. “RALPH”! “RALPH”! “What did you do to that car of yours”? “Every light in the house is out” (called my wife Susan from the kitchen). “You silly man”! “Did you blow the main breaker working on that car again”? “Whoops, I must have dosed....and yes, I did it again”!! “Excellent dream though. Will have to continue.........”
...To be continued,.........(on next page, no less)
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