Singing Sword 

A “Captain Scarlet & the Mysteron” story

 

By

SCARLET LADY

 

 

PART 2

 

 

Captain Scarlet was the first to arrive at the door marked 'T. Blackmoore'.  He grabbed the handle and turned to his colleagues, close behind him.  "Wait here," he ordered.  Blue opened his mouth to protest, but was cut off by his partner.  "Sorry, Captain. This is MY job.  I'll see that all is clear.  When I'm satisfied, I'll call you."

Lieutenant Green said nothing.  He knew better than to argue with the Captain.

 

Scarlet entered the room silently, glancing all round him.  Everything SEEMED normal enough, but he had that feeling...  Finding a stack of discs, he began looking for something - anything - that could give a clue.  "Hmm.  Genesis, Abba, Human League...  Are they doing a '1980s special?" He frowned, "Well, there's nothing out of the ordinary THERE, anyway."  He went to the computer system.  Though the broadcaster seemed to have prepared everything, there wasn't a sign of him.  Scarlet decided to call for the man.

"Blackmoore? Mister Blackmoore? Are you in here? I have to ask you some questions concerning a visitor...” A loud detonation made itself heard, and a bullet just missed his head. Following a new detonation, he felt another bullet grazing him. Wincing slightly, Scarlet leaped for cover behind a large, heavy looking computer near what looked like a cupboard.  From there he could see Blackmoore's shadow, at the opposite side of the room. That was rather close, he thought.

 

"Sorry, Captain Scarlet, but you've interfered with our plans for the last time!"

In his hiding place, Scarlet shook his head.  "Now, you should never be TOO confident!"  With that, he fired in the direction of the man he now knew was a Mysteron Agent.  The shadow moved slightly.  He wondered whether he had hit or merely surprised his opponent.

 

***

 

Waiting outside, Captain Blue and Lieutenant Green could hear what was going on through the  close door.  The Lieutenant turned to Blue.  "Captain, we can't just-"

"We were told to keep clear," Blue answered, hiding his own feelings.

"Yes, Sir, I know.  But Captain Scarlet-"

"Can take care of himself." Green couldn't help looking a LITTLE doubtful, and Blue found that he didn’t like either the thought of leaving Scarlet to fend for himself.  "Look, if we just rush in there, without using our heads, we could easily make the situation worse."  He felt as though he was just trying to make HIMSELF feel better, but it seemed to do the trick.  The Lieutenant calmed down.

"Yes, you're right, Captain." Green looked a little embarrassed, "I guess I'm a little edgy."

Blue chuckled. "Once he's through in there, you can play on the computer, OK?" he said, trying to sound pleasant.

 

***

 

Meanwhile, Captain Scarlet had discovered that he had put himself in an awkward corner.  Blackmoore was able to move moderately, but the only place Scarlet could possibly go was to the cupboard behind him.  Any other move would put him in the line of fire.  Knowing that there was nothing more he could do, he waited.  Blackmoore already seemed impatient; surely he would make a mistake before long...

 

Finally, Blackmoore lost patience altogether.  "Come on! Come and show yourself, you coward!"

Scarlet opened his mouth to answer back, but decided against it.

"What's the matter? Gone to sleep in there, have you?"

Still no answer came. 

Frustrated, Blackmoore fired a few more bullets at Scarlet.  He heard the Spectrum Captain cry out in pain and laughed wickedly.  Scarlet then gave a faint gasp and went limp.  Good. He's either unconscious or dead.  Now to get on…

 

 

After waiting a while, Scarlet carefully shifted his position on the floor, doing his best to make the minimum amount of noise.  The Captain checked that Blackmoore hadn’t noticed him.  The Mysteron Agent hadn’t even turned around to get another look at him; he must have been fooled.  Scarlet glanced up at the computer.  Although the bullets had passed straight through the piece of machinery, they had scattered in various directions – the only one that had hit had only grazed his leg.  Moving at a painstakingly slow rate, he sat up and seized his pistol.  As he got to his feet, he leaned against the equipment that had been his cover.  The Captain took a sharp breath to keep himself from yelling as his fingers painfully grazed the edge of a bullet hole.  He’d only made a faint sound, but Blackmoore turned his head.  “Scarlet?”

 

The Captain remained quiet and still, hoping that his enemy would be unable to see him.

 

The Mysteron frowned.  No movement, no sound, and Scarlet’s body was hidden behind the large machine.  He shrugged and continued his work – keeping his eyes and ears open.

 

Scarlet moved to the nearest piece of machinery – as quickly as he could while remaining as close to silent as possible.  He took a quick glance at his enemy, who was still working away.  At his side was a disc, but it was impossible to tell what it was.  I’ll have to get him away from there, but how? It’ll mean giving my position away.  He frowned, glancing about him.  His eyes fell on a device at the opposite end of the room.  The tape player!  There’s bound to be something in the machine – and anyway, all I want to do is make a noise…  he picked up the first thing that came to his hand, and lobbed it at the PLAY button.  A series of detonations sounded loudly.

 Blackmoore jumped up and took the best cover possible, growling to himself.  So the fool thinks he’s taken me by surprise, does he…? Little did he realise that he was hiding from the wrong end of the room.  Scarlet aimed for the Mysteron agent’s heart and fired.  Blackmoore was down, but still the Spectrum captain knew better than to go too close.  He decided to call Captain Blue on his cap microphone.  “Mysteron agent dealt with.  Request Mysteron rifle.”

 

“S.I.G., Captain.” Blue answered.

 

***

 

Meanwhile, Black had received a message from his masters, informing him of the loss of Blackmoore.  He knew what he had to do…  He headed back to the reception desk.  The receptionist looked startled as he approached her.  “Who are you?” she demanded.

“I am a Spectrum Officer,” Black told her, in his deep voice.

She shuddered; the voice chilled her to the bone.  “No, you’re not,” she replied, boldly, reaching for the alarm button on her desk. “The REAL Spectrum members told me that you work for the enemy!”

Black seemed to consider her words, then said, “Come to think of it, I’m not like the other Spectrum members.” He pulled his pistol from his jacket pocket and shot her down with three bullets.

 

***

 

Scarlet watched Blackmoore intensely, not risking the chance that the Mysteron wasn’t really dead.  Blue entered and fired at Blackmoore with the electrode rifle, the only weapon that could kill a Mysteron agent for sure.  Scarlet turned to his partner.  “Good job, Captain.”

“Thanks, Scarlet,” Blue answered, grinning, then noticed his friend’s injured leg.  “Looks like he put up a good fight,” he commented.

“A mere scratch.  It’s already healing…” he glanced at the spot on his finger where the graze had been, absent-mindedly rubbing it.

Blue frowned.  “What’s wrong?”

“Nothing,” Scarlet assured him. He turned to the open door, “Lieutenant, perhaps you can get on with that computer.”

“Yes, Sir,” Green answered behind him.  Scarlet turned around, almost startled.  Green was already at the computer console.

Blue chuckled, “Watch it Paul, Green’s too quick for you!”

Scarlet laughed and went to see what the younger man had found.  “Anything yet, Lieutenant?”

“Well, sir, he was preparing to go on air, but I don’t think he did anything unusual…”

“You’re certain?”

“Yes, Captain.”

Scarlet blew out a frustrated sigh.  “But that makes it too EASY! The Mysterons surely won’t be defeated that easily… we must have missed something.”

He turned back to Blue, who was examining the pile of discs.  “I’ve already checked them, Adam.  I couldn’t see anything of help.”

“1980’s selection,” Blue commented. “Of all the music out there, the Mysterons decide on that – why?”

“They like it?” Green muttered, sarcastically.

“It isn’t necessarily something to do with the Mysterons,” Scarlet pointed out.  “Those discs could have already been there.”

“Yeah, I know… just seems strange.”  Blue shrugged, “Well, what now?”

Green was taking a good look at each disc in turn.  “Hey, what’s this?”

“You’ve found something?” Scarlet asked, eagerly.

“I don’t know, sir, but this disc doesn’t seem right…”

Scarlet rolled his eyes, impatiently. “Lieutenant, I thought you were onto something!”

“Can we try it? It looks as though-”

“If you MUST!” Scarlet snapped. “Provided you focus on the job in hand.”

Blue took the disc from the Lieutenant.  “I think he was hoping we’d cracked it,” He told him, gesturing toward Scarlet. “I agree with him, the Mysterons usually have a plan B, to fall back on.”

“Maybe they expected this one to be too easy…”

“Well, yeah, Lieutenant…  But they never left anything to chance, before.”  Blue inserted the disc in the player.

 

Scarlet paled, feeling the usual discomfort, which usually indicated the presence of a Mysteron.  He watched Blue switch on the disc, but nothing audible came from the player.  Blue frowned. “Dumb thing isn’t working-” He began to fiddle with the settings.

“Adam, something’s wrong…” Scarlet grabbed something to steady himself, while trying to clear his head.  “I’m going to check the building, take charge.”

“S.I.G., Captain,” Blue looked up, “but will you be ok on your own?”

“I’ll be fine,” Scarlet snapped back at him. “Just take charge!”

He turned and darted from the room, leaving Blue staring after him. 

Suddenly, he stopped.  Following his sixth sense, he headed for the lift, but realizing that, as he wasn’t sure WHERE the Mysteron was, it would be wiser to take the stairs.

At the same moment, the receptionist was heading up to the roof, inside the elevator Scarlet had been about to call for, with the orders to keep her enemy busy.  This would be no easy task, but she was going to enjoy it…

 

Captain Scarlet wondered whom he was chasing – he guessed that it was Black, and was determined to find him this time.  He started racing down the stairs.  Nearing the forth floor, he stumbled slightly.  I must be getting closer, he thought, but all at once, he began to feel better.  Blast! He must be moving! The Captain frowned. If Black was using the stairs, heading in his direction, he would be steadily getting worse… he must have been taking the lift.  Scarlet turned, and headed back up. 

 

Meanwhile, the receptionist’s reconstruction had been informed that Scarlet was on her trail.  She smiled, evilly.  Perhaps she could achieve the one thing even Captain Black had never managed – killing the interfering Spectrum Captain once and for all.  She knew that Scarlet had always managed to escape from death somehow, but she would ensure that he didn’t on this occasion…

 

While Scarlet played chase with the Mysteron whom he believed to be Black, the real Captain Black had gone to the basement floor.  He prepared a bomb against the main heating system.  Spectrum had got in the way, but not thwarted them, and now was a perfect opportunity to rid the Mysterons of three of  its members.  If he played it right, Scarlet would be caught in the heart of the blast, and destroyed…

 

Captain Scarlet finally came to the roof.  He could feel the presence of the Mysteron up there.  His headache was threatening to overwhelm him, and his stomach kept turning over.  He swallowed hard.  Right, Captain Black is up here… I must concentrate… he glanced about him.  The cold wind tore into him, making concentration all the harder.  He turned, feeling someone’s eyes staring into him.  He started slightly when he found that the Mysteron wasn’t Black after all, but hid it quickly.

“Surprised to see me, Earthman?”

“YOU!” Scarlet glared daggers at the receptionist. “Where is Captain Black?”

“Captain Black has left you in my hands.”

Scarlet sized her up, carefully.  The receptionist didn’t seem to pose much of a threat, but he was unwilling to accept that.  No Mysteron could be called ‘harmless’.  “Listen, miss,” he began, quietly, “I was a Mysteron, just like you, but I escaped – which means that you can.”

She gave the reaction he expected – she scoffed.  “How can I escape them? NOBODY escapes them!”

“You’re wrong – VERY wrong,” the Captain replied. “Some have escaped.  We can help you. Our scientists are-”

“Hopeless – just like you, and all the OTHER Earthmen.”

“Remember – YOU were one.”

“And I was weak.”

“You were HUMAN!” Scarlet barked at her in response.

“That’s what I said.” The reconstruction smirked at him, as he failed to reply.  “What’s the matter? Lost for words?”

Scarlet shivered violently, as the rain began to fall.  “You’re wrong.  If human beings were as weak as you say, we would never have thwarted you on so many occasions.”

“Luck has been on your side.” She shrugged at him, “But luck only helps while it lasts – and it CAN’T last forever!” This said; she lunged at him.

Surprised at  how fast she had reacted, Scarlet took the full force of the impact, and felt himself falling back.  Hitting the roof heavily, he stared at his opponent, as she pinned him down.  “Get off me,” he told her, as if he were talking to a naughty schoolgirl.  His back was very painful, and he had to concentrate hard to ensure that it didn’t show.

She laughed in response.  “You think you’re so tough, don’t you!” She dragged him to his feet, bracing herself against the wall as she did so. “Let’s see how strong you really are…”

“What are you doing?” Scarlet stared at her.

“Your organisation seem to think you are Superman…” she dragged him to the edge of the roof.  “So let’s see you fly.” Scarlet glanced over the edge, looking for something – anything – to cushion his fall.  There was nothing.  He didn’t even have something to grab.

 “What’s the matter, Scarlet?” he heard his enemy taunting him. “Not lost you’re nerve, have you?” The Mysteron chuckled wickedly.  This was too much fun.  Suddenly, a voice in her head interrupted her.  “This is Captain Black, relaying instructions from the Mysterons on Mars.  You are not to play with Scarlet.  The Earthman is dangerous and you are to deal with him quickly.”

 

At  the last possible moment, Scarlet shoved against the Mysteron with all his might.  His opponent was caught off guard, and fell back.

Scarlet frowned.  I was always told that a gentleman should never harm a lady, he thought, getting on his feet, and staring down at the still body.  She twitched slightly.  Then again, can a Mysteron agent be called a LADY? He wondered.

She pulled herself up, growling like a wild animal.  Scarlet was ready for her, this time.  He took a few steps back, preparing himself for another attack.

The Mysteron took the movement as a sign of fear, and chuckled wickedly.

Scarlet took another pace back.  She continued to advance… The rain began to pour.  Scarlet glanced at the sky, for a moment.  He’d been through training on days like this, so he was prepared, but he still wished that the weather would relent a bit. 

  She moved closer, while he was distracted.  Scarlet turned and frowned at her.  “What NOW?”

She smirked at him, pulling out a cylinder that looked like a deodorant spray from a pocket.  The Spectrum Captain was really confused, now.  What was she doing? He guessed and tried to dart away, but slipped and fell.  The Mysteron stood over her enemy, gloating.  He turned his head to look up at her.  His back was a mass of pain, and he could barely move.  She knelt beside him, staring at him through empty eyes.  Something was sprayed in Scarlet’s face.  He coughed violently – whatever the substance was, was threatening to choke him.  He staggered to his feet.

 

The Mysteronised receptionist watched as the Spectrum Captain lurched about, trying to recover.  He almost slipped in the puddles a second time, and grabbed out at something – an aerial.  He quickly let go, as thunder rolled overhead.  There was a chance that lightning would strike it, and he was unwilling to take the risk.  His enemy seemed confused by this reaction.  She frowned at him, wondering what he was thinking.

 

Lightning flashed overhead, making the pair of them look up… Scarlet saw that the Mysteron was still staring at the sky, and pushed her into the tallest aerial.  She grabbed at it, to steady herself.  “Foolish Earthman.  What did you expect to do?” 

Another bolt of lightning flashed across the sky. It struck the antennae that the Mysteron was holding.  She gave a blood-curdling cry.  Scarlet turned away, knowing the effects of electricity only too well.  He turned back, to see the Mysteron lying still, face down in a puddle – she was clearly dead.

 

Shivering violently, Scarlet scrambled into the lift.  As he came to the sixth floor, his head began to ache again.  The cold air often has this effect on me, he thought, rubbing the bridge of his nose.  He finally came to the studio that had belonged to Blackmoore. “Paul, what happened?” Blue stared at his best friend as he entered, soaked to the skin and shivering. “There was a Mysteron on the roof,” Scarlet answered, “She’s dead – struck by lightning.”

Blue sent the Lieutenant to get Scarlet a hot drink.  “What do you mean, SHE?” he asked, sitting his partner down.

“The receptionist was taken over.”

“In which case, Captain Black  might still be around,” Blue muttered, gravely.

“Adam, I… I might have felt him – when I was in the lift-” Scarlet began to stand, but Blue held him down, gently.  “Will you take it easy? I’ll go.”

“But you won’t know where to look-”

“How can you be sure that you know where Black is – can you be sure that it was him that you felt?”

“I…” Scarlet sighed, “I can’t, no.”

“Then let me check it out, OK?”

Scarlet really didn’t want Blue wandering the building alone.  “If you want to search for Black, I can’t stop you.  But at LEAST let me come along.”

“Fine, alright,” Blue answered, a little annoyed.

 

The Lieutenant came back to find the two Captains gone.  He sighed with frustration, then took a seat at the computer.  He sipped the tea he’d brought for Scarlet, absentmindedly.

 

***

 

Meanwhile, Captains Scarlet and Blue had reached the basement.  Blue searched around.  “There’s nobody here, Paul.”

Scarlet shook his head.  “There must be SOMETHING – I can feel it!”

 “Are you SURE you’re ok?”

Scarlet kept himself from shivering.  “I’m fine.”

“If you’re sure.  Look, I’ll go take a look at the reception desk, to see if I can find any clues there.  You coming?”

“No.  I think I’ll go back upstairs…”

“S.I.G.” Blue answered, “Take care of yourself.” A thought hit him.  “I guess I should send you back to Cloudbase.  You shouldn’t hang around in wet clothes.”

“I’m alright,” Scarlet snapped back at him.  “Go and look for clues, Sherlock.”

The American sighed.  “OK, fine.  Have it your own way.”

 

Captain Scarlet had turned to leave behind his partner, when he thought he heard something.  He turned, wondering what it was.  A strange feeling crept over him, and , he noticed something stuck to the heating system.  “What’s this?” he muttered, examining the device.  When he saw what it was, a gasp escaped him.  He flipped down his cap microphone and yelled into it.  “Lieutenant Green – evacuate the building! There is a bomb rigged to the heating system!”

 

Green gave an acknowledgement and left the room hurriedly.  He considered taking the lift, but decided against it and headed for the stairs.  The elevator may be quicker, but should the cables snap…

 

***

 

Captain Blue studied the reception office, carefully, but was unable to find anything of help.  Looking in a cupboard, he almost jumped out of his skin when he found the body of the receptionist.  He stopped suddenly, as a call came through from Scarlet.  “Yes, Ca-”

“Adam, there is a bomb down here.  Get out!” Scarlet practically screamed at him.

Blue bolted from the room.  “S.I.G., Captain.  What about Green?”

“I’ve already called him – he should already be on his way out.”

“What about you?”

 

“I’m leaving,” Scarlet replied, ending the conversation. 

A bullet just missed him then, making him jump.  

Turning round, he found that Black was there behind him.  “Scarlet, we meet again.”

Scarlet glared back at him, realizing that he must had appeared out of nowhere at the moment he had found the bomb. “I KNEW I’d felt you!”

“Congratulations, your sixth sense works,”  The Mysteron agent remarked sarcastically.

The Spectrum officer stared back at him, blankly.

Black smirked.  His expression chilled Scarlet to the bone.  “You said that the Singing Sword would slice us down, not blow us up…” he began.

Black chuckled.  “So, you didn’t fully understand the threat.  You are right, the Singing Sword will bring you down.”

Scarlet shivered violently.  He was growing colder by the minute…

“What is it, Scarlet?” Black taunted. “Don’t you like a cold shower?”

“Just because YOU like the rain!” Scarlet muttered. “And without wonder! You’re a cold blooded, murderous…!” his voice trailed off, as he saw the expression on the Mysteron’s face.  Black seemed to take each insult as a compliment.  He gave a malicious smile, and raised his gun at Scarlet.  The Spectrum Captain reached for his own, only to find it wasn’t there.  He had a feeling he’d lost it while fighting the receptionist on the roof…

Black moved a little closer.  “What’s the matter, Scarlet?”

Scarlet allowed him to approach, gritting his teeth.  Just a bit closer, Black…he thought.

When his opponent was close enough to him, Scarlet swiftly lurched at him.

 

***

 

Blue and Green were waiting under cover from the rain, not too far away from the SWORD studio.  Green shuddered.  “Where’s Captain Scarlet?”

“I don’t know, Lieutenant,” Blue replied. “He said he was leaving the building, but that was the last I heard from him.”

“I hope he’s alright,” the Lieutenant muttered, voicing the concern they both felt.

 

***

 

Scarlet had managed to kick the gun from Black.    The Mysteron was leading him around in circles, and he was unsure as to how long he could keep it up.  Black could see that his enemy was tiring, probably down to the discomfort he felt.  He took a swing at the Spectrum officer, who dodged the blow easily.  Black held up a detonator for the bomb, to show Scarlet.  “You are a fool, Earthman!” he told him, “I shall destroy the Sword Studio, and you with it.”

“What happened to calling it the SINGING SWORD, Black?”

Black laughed, mockingly, and punched his enemy in the stomach.  The Spectrum officer flinched, stepping back.  Black moved in, to give another blow.

Scarlet dealt a fast punch in the face, before Black had a chance to move away.  It was Black’s turn to reel, feeling a terrible pain in his nose.  The Spectrum Captain coughed out a short laugh.  “I broke your nose once, and I can do it again, Conrad!” The Mysteron stared at him.  “I am not your Conrad – Conrad Turner is DEAD.”

“I don’t believe that for one moment!” the Captain shouted at him. “Spectrum will help him, as they helped me.  Then where will the Mysterons be?”

Captain Black gave him another bone-chilling stare and  stepped back.  Before Scarlet’s dumbfounded eyes, he suddenly vanished into thin air.   Scarlet realised that he’d taken the detonator with him.  He turned and ran.

 

Scarlet got to the ground floor as he heard the first explosion.  He was outside – just about when the building went up.  The blast threw him  to the cold, hard tarmac of the road.  He tried to sit up, but couldn’t.  The blast wave, along with the cold, had weakened him too much.

 

He saw Captain Blue and Lieutenant Green running to him from their cover.

“Are you OK, Paul?” Captain Blue asked, as he helped his partner to his feet.

Scarlet sighed, tiredly.  “I’ve been better.”

“We’ll go back to Cloudbase, Sir,” Lieutenant Green told him, gently.

“You’ve taken quite a pounding,” Blue added.

Scarlet sneezed, then grasped his stomach with a wince. “I seem to have made a habit out of that,” He muttered.

“Yeah, I know,” Blue put his arm around his friend, to steady him.

Scarlet was so tired, that he felt as if he’d pass out.  “I just need to sleep…”

“Hang on, Paul, I don’t think we’ll be able to carry you,” Blue told him, gently.  “Try to wait till we get you to the car.”

 “Alright, I’ll hold on…”

Blue nodded.  He tried to lighten the mood a little.  “The rain’s stopping now, anyway.”

“At long last!” Scarlet was still shivering uncontrollably.  “I’m freezing!”

 

When they reached the car, Blue laid Scarlet in the back, wrapping a blanket round him.  He looked anxiously at his fellow officer.  “This is the best I can do for you, I’m afraid, Paul.”

“That’s alright, Adam.  Thank you.”

Blue gave him a small smile, and touched his arm.  “Once we’re back on Cloudbase, Doctor Fawn’ll probably want to check you over…”

Scarlet didn’t answer.  He had already drifted into slumber.

“Lieutenant, can you drive us to the airport? I think someone should take care of Captain Scarlet.” “S.I.G., Captain,” Green started the engine and Blue sat in the back, being careful not to disturb his sleeping friend.

 

***

 

Colonel White was relieved when a blue light blinked on his console.  “Do you have anything to report, Captain Blue?”

“Yes, sir.  The SWORD building was destroyed – whatever the Mysterons had in mind by using it failed.”

“I’m glad to hear it.”

“Captain Scarlet’s in a pretty bad way.  He’s been hit by an explosion from a bomb, planted by Black in the building and he’s also taken a real soaking.”

“As soon as you get back, I want Scarlet taken to the Sickbay – and I don’t care what he says to the contrary.”

“S.I.G., Colonel.  He’s sleeping at the moment, anyway.”

“Good, at least he can’t argue.  I’ll want to see you and Green as soon as you get back – unless you have reason to visit Doctor Fawn before hand.”

“We’re fine, Sir,” Blue assured his Commanding Officer.  “Captain Scarlet got us to evacuate the building in time.”

“I’m glad to hear it.” The Colonel broke contact.

 

 

TO BE CONTINUED IN PART 3

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