Trouble Within 

A “Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons” story

by Scarlet Lady

 

 

 

"Come ON England!" Captain Scarlet stared intently at the TV screen. 

Doctor Fawn, seated next to him, scoffed.  "I don't see WHY you want to watch this," he remarked. "That team your lot are playing against are champions!"

"England can beat Australia EASILY, when given a fair fight!" Scarlet retorted.

"What does that mean?"

"All the bad luck and far worse decisions! Is that how you Aussies win, buying out the umpires?"

"You can't mean that! Captain Scarlet, I didn't know you were such a sore loser!"

"England have NOT lost yet!"

Captain Blue entered the Officers' Lounge.  He grinned at Scarlet and Fawn, who were still giving each other’s a piece of their minds.  "I never knew cricket was so much fun," he commented, joining the two men.

"YES!" Fawn shouted, as an Australian fielder caught the flying cricket ball, then, "NO!" as he overstepped the boundary rope.

"Six!" Scarlet crowed. "Nice one!"

"I don't get it," Blue frowned at Scarlet, puzzled.

"If a batsman hits the ball, and it's caught before it touches the ground, that's out.  If the ball rolls over the boundary rope, the batting team score four runs.  When the ball travels OVER the rope without touching the ground-"

"That's six points." Blue nodded. "I see.  Maybe you can teach me to understand and enjoy the game - be better than putting up with Fawn, eh?"

Scarlet and Fawn both laughed at the remark.

 

A slight noise came from the speakers.  Scarlet thought he heard something and looked up, but as nothing more came from them he returned his attention to the game.  Then came that dreaded voice, "THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS," "WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.  WE INTEND TO TEAR SPECTRUM APART FROM WITHIN.  SPECTRUM WILL BE NO MORE." 

Blue sighed, "Here we go again. Ah well, it's better than cricket, I guess." Scarlet shot him a quick glance.  "I was kidding!"

"If you really enjoy living, watch what you say, Captain."

Fawn chuckled.  "You're only annoyed, because you can't see the rest of the match.  Tell you what, I'll keep you informed during the game.  Fair?"

"Just don't tease me, I'll be working, remember."

 

***

 

"Attention all Cloudbase personnel," Lieutenant Green's voice called over the speakers. "We are now on yellow alert.  Captains Scarlet, Blue, Grey and Magenta, report to Control immediately."

 

Captains Scarlet and Blue started toward the door, when Doctor Fawn called out, "Hang on a minute, Captain Scarlet.  What do you make of this?"

Blue turned to him "Paul, Colonel White's waiting for us."

"Just tell him I'm with Doctor Fawn."

"He'll think there's something wrong."

"At least he won't shout at me for turning up late.  Now get moving, I'll join you in the control room."

Blue sighed, "So you want me to lie for you?"

"No.  I AM with Doctor Fawn.  Go on, I'll be with you in a minute."

Blue sighed, turned on his heel, and left the lounge, shaking his head.

Scarlet sat next to the Doctor and stared at the TV screen.  "What did you want me to look at?"

 

Colonel White was losing his patience.  Grey and Magenta had turned up, but Blue and Scarlet were taking their time.  "Lieutenant, call them again, will you?"

No sooner had the words left his lips, than Blue entered.  "Sorry I'm late, sir... I was with Captain Scarlet."

"Well YOU are here, now.  Where's Scarlet?"

"With Doctor Fawn."

"Nothing wrong, is there?" the angry tone to Colonel White's voice had been replaced by a concerned one.

"That's what he's finding out, I think sir." Blue was feeling very uneasy.  Paul's going to have to make this one up to me, he decided.

"Sit down, Captain Blue.  If Captain Scarlet is busy in the Sickbay, we'll continue without him."

Blue took a seat next to Magenta, and Colonel White began.  "Now, the latest Mysteron threat."

"This isn't the first time Spectrum has been directly threatened, Colonel," Blue commented. "They've tried destroying Cloudbase, killing YOU off, stopping Spectrum operating by getting rid of our oil supplies..."

Magenta nodded. "Yeah.  They even tried killing off Captain Scarlet!"

"Well, doesn't it make you wonder what they can have in mind this time?" Captain Blue asked. "I mean, surely they've tried everything already, sir?"

"They wouldn't make a threat, if they didn't already have an idea of how to carry it out," White remarked. "One thing we've learned in this war of nerves is that the Mysterons never make hollow threats."

"So where do we start, sir?" Grey asked. "Surely they won't try the same thing twice, so what can their target be?"

"There are lots of ways to skin a cat.  We'll start by looking at the various ways the Mysterons can directly threaten Spectrum."

Captain Scarlet entered just in time to hear these words.  He came to attention before his commanding officer.

"You are late." Colonel White glared at him.

"I'm sorry, sir, I-"

"You were in the Sickbay with Doctor Fawn, I hear," Colonel White stated calmly. "You ARE alright, aren't you?"

"Fine, sir.  It was just a test." Scarlet looked a little uneasy.

"Did you hear the latest threat?" Colonel White asked, gesturing him to sit down.

"Yes.  The Mysterons want to destroy Spectrum from within." Scarlet took a seat. "I was thinking that perhaps they'll try breaking us down.  I can't help thinking of what happened when Captain Ochre turned against me, sir.  Would they try to create some mistrust in the organisation?"

"As they have before, when they told us we had a spy in our midst," Blue remarked.

"That's a thought." Colonel White looked a little more concerned.  "Breaking Spectrum down by putting doubt between us... that would cause tremendous problems."

"Yes, Colonel."

 

***

 

Their assignment took Captains Scarlet and Blue to Spectrum Headquarters, London.  Captain Magenta made for Koala Base, and Grey headed for Spectrum New York.

 

Captain Magenta had little trouble upon arrival.  Everyone was very helpful, and he got to work quickly.  First, he took a look at the security - it was working perfectly.  "This is going to be an easy mission!" he commented brightly.

 

Captains Scarlet and Blue were having worse luck.  The moment they arrived, the guards, obviously some new guys, told them that to enter, everyone had to be checked with a Mysteron detector.  "There's no need for that," Captain Blue began calmly, "Just call Colonel White.  He-"

"What's the matter, Captain Blue? Got something to hide?"

"No."

"In that case you have nothing to worry about, do you?"

First, they used the detector on Blue.  "Right, Captain, you're clean.  You can go on in, if you want."

"I'll wait for my partner, if that's OK.  But don't bother using the detector on him-"

"You can stay, but don't tell me how to do my job."  Using the detector on Captain Scarlet was a different matter.  One of the men grabbed the Mysteron rifle, pointing it directly at Scarlet.  Captain Blue shoved his partner out of the way.  "Hey, wait a minute! Captain Scarlet isn't a Mysteron!"

"Why does the detector say he is, then?"

"Look, if you give me the time, I'll explain. You’re new, so you don’t know-"

"Fine.  But Scarlet is going to stay where we can keep an eye on him.  I don't like having Mysterons running about the place, and until proven otherwise that's exactly what he's to be considered."

 

After a very long talk, Captain Blue finally persuaded the guards.  Captain Scarlet was permitted to leave the small room, in which he had been imprisoned.  "Enjoy it?" Captain Blue asked, trying not to laugh at his ruffled partner.

"What do YOU think?"

"What's the plan of action, Captain?"

"Find any ways the Mysterons can destroy our organisation from within, and stop them."

"How do we do that? What are we looking for?"

"All our weaknesses.  You can be sure that if there is ONE, the Mysterons will find and use it."

"Where do we start?"

"Security."

"Do you still think they want to divide the members of Spectrum?"

"It's a possibility.  Let's face it, confusion is our worst enemy. Let that take over and goodness knows what could happen!"

"Yeah, but how can they split us up?"

"I don't know, alright? It's a possibility, I didn't say it was definite."

"Right, shall we get on?"

"SIG, Captain Blue."

"SIG, partner."

 

***

 

Captain Onyx met Scarlet and Blue in the staff lounge area.  His manner was polite toward them, yet there was something in it that made both Captains Scarlet and Blue a little uneasy.  "Here to make sure I'm doing a good job, are you?" he chuckled. He had been informed of the incident at the door by one of his men. Now, as he was looking mischievously at Scarlet, it was pretty obvious to Blue that he already KNEW about his unique condition. Must have been trying to impress us, the American captain thought.

"Don't worry, I have everything under control!"

"Famous last words, Onyx," Scarlet remarked, dryly. "The Mysterons want you to THINK nothing can possibly go wrong, it makes it easier to pounce!"

"So, you don't think what I've done to prepare for these aliens is good enough, Captain Scarlet?"

"I didn't say that-"

"Mysterons plan everything," Blue explained. "If someone gets overconfident, they can put that to their advantage."

"Oh, so I'm overconfident, am I?"

"NO!" Scarlet and Blue almost shouted at him.

"I'm - WE'RE just saying you can never be too careful," Captain Blue explained, calmly.

"The slightest mistake and the Mysterons are in!" Scarlet added.

"WHY DO YOU THINK I SET UP THAT DETECTOR SQUAD OUTSIDE?" Onyx demanded, taking both Scarlet and Blue by surprise.

"As I said earlier, it's a good idea," Scarlet told him, evenly. "But while a suspect is being questioned, does the whole... 'squad' have to guard him? That means the door is unguarded, if only for a small amount of time-"

"There WAS someone on guard out there when you and Blue were brought in.  What are you talking about?"

"Sorry, Captain, I thought they all came in with us," Scarlet said quietly. "My mistake."

"Can we take a look at your security, Captain Onyx?" Blue cut in. "We should make sure everything's in order."

Onyx didn't look very happy about this.  Scarlet added, "We can leave you in peace, once we're satisfied."

"Good.  Let's get cracking, then."

 

***

 

Captain Onyx took Scarlet and Blue to a room full of various computers - the heart of security.  "This is what you wanted to see, Captain Scarlet?"

"Yes.  Thank you for your cooperation, Captain.  We won't take long."

"Good.  You don't mind if I stay, do you?"

"No." Blue smiled at Onyx. "You're welcome to stay, if you want."

"Right.  If you have any questions, feel free to fire away."

Scarlet turned to Blue, rolling his eyes.  Blue masked his amusement and began going through the programmes.  "Think we should've brought Lieutenant Green with us?"

"I was thinking it, actually," Scarlet replied quietly. "When I saw the amount of machines we had to go through."

"Oh, come here." Onyx shouldered between them. "Now, what are you trying to do?"

 

Back on Cloudbase, everything seemed normal.  It was hard to believe that there was a Mysteron threat.  There had been no reports, no problems, in fact nothing at all peculiar.  Perhaps this was why Colonel White felt so uneasy.  He frowned. "Not a word from Captains Scarlet and Blue."

Lieutenant Green turned from working at his computer. "Sir?"

"Nothing, Lieutenant, I was just thinking aloud-" A red light blinked on his desk. The Colonel motioned to Green that he wanted to take the call, pressing a button next to the light.  "Go ahead, Captain Scarlet."

"Colonel, I'm calling to report that we are getting on fine.  We've just met Captain Onyx, and he is going through the machinery with us."

"Good… Wait a minute, what do you mean ‘just’?"

"We had a slight delay, due a squad of new men with a Mysteron detector outside.  Blue managed to solve the problem, though."

"I'm glad to hear it.  Please contact me if something comes up."

"S.I.G."

Lieutenant Green turned to Colonel White.  "Sir, can I go down and help?"

"Now don't start that again! I need you here.  Should something come up I will send you - IF that is what is required.  Right now, however, you are needed right where you are."

"Yes, Colonel."

The Colonel sighed and got up.  "The problem with this type of threat is that they have told us WHAT they want to do, but not HOW.  How on Earth can we cover every possibility?"

Lieutenant Green smiled slightly. "You can send out more men-"

"Don't even think it!"

 

***

 

"This is BORING!" Symphony Angel grumbled, pacing restlessly in the Amber Room. "Why can't we get some excitement?"

"We will," Rhapsody answered. "As soon as things start happening.  The Mysterons haven't made a move, yet."

"Well, I wish they'd hurry it up, so we can get some action."

"I agree," Destiny piped up. "When we're in action, it's not as bad - but I detest waiting around here!"

"Just remember who might be listening to you!" Rhapsody said quietly. "The Mysterons have threatened US remember-"

"You worry too much, girl!" Symphony laughed, "What's wrong?"

"Nothing. I just want to know why you're so anxious to get some action in - especially when we don't know what this threat could mean."

"Like what?" Destiny and Symphony were both staring at her now, wondering what could possibly be on her mind.

"Well think about it, would you?" Rhapsody almost exploded. "Who's to say we won't end up shooting down one of our own members  - let me rephrase that - someone who USED to be one of our own members again?"

"So THAT'S it!" Symphony exclaimed. "But why is that worrying you? Whatever the situation, Mysterons could decide to take a Spectrum member over."

"Oui!" Destiny agreed, "They've used our members LOTS of times."

Rhapsody sighed, uneasily, "I don't know if THAT'S why I'm worried, I've... got a feeling about this one."

 

 

"I've got a very bad feeling about this one, Adam," Captain Scarlet whispered to Blue, nodding in the direction of Captain Onyx, "I think we aught to watch him."

"Is that coming from YOU or that detector of yours?"

"Me.  I can't feel any Mysterons yet."

"No news is good news."

"Not with THEM, Ad - Captain Blue."

Onyx came over. "What do you think this is - TEA BREAK?"

"No," Captain Scarlet replied, keeping his voice as levelled as he could."We're just discussing the Mysteron threat-"

At the word 'Mysteron' a computer suddenly shut itself off.

"Scarlet, you stupid-"

"Don't you speak to ME like that!" All around the three men, computer systems were now crashing.

"I can speak to you like that if I want! What've you done to these computers? Do you realise how much these babies cost?"

"What do you THINK I've done?"

Onyx merely glared at him by way of answer.

"NOTHING!” Scarlet continued. “What makes you think I'd sabotage the property of my own organisation?"

This set an alarm off, somewhere deep inside Onyx. Ever since he had met with Scarlet earlier, he had showed weary of him. "YOUR organisation?"

"Yes!"

Onyx snatched his gun, aiming it at Scarlet's head.  "If you ARE loyal to Spectrum - PROVE IT!"

Captain Blue stared at the maddened idiot.  "Captain Scarlet HAS, Onyx," he told him quietly, "COUNTLESS times! I'd trust him with my life. Scarlet's my best friend as well as my partner.  He'd NEVER let Spectrum down!"

Onyx glanced at him. "You REALLY trust him that much?"

"AND more."

"OK." With that, the gun was put away.

Scarlet waited until the fool was out of earshot, then turned to Blue. "Nutter," he hissed. "That man is completely MAD! How did he get to be chosen for Spectrum?"

"Maybe... he's having a bad day, or something?"

"Then he shouldn't be at work."

"Come on, you've worked when you shouldn't have!"

"That's different - you know that."

Blue cleared his throat, then turned to watch the 'nutter’ who was now looking at the inside of one of the computers.  "Er, Captain...” Blue told him cautiously, “shouldn't you check the mains before poking around in there? If something were to go wrong-"

"Quiet! I know what I'm doing."

Scarlet rolled his eyes, "Of COURSE you do!"

 

***

 

Captain Scarlet checked on the main cables, while Captains Blue and Onyx tried to work out what could possibly have gone wrong with the computers.  "Well, I still say it has nothing to do with the outside cables," Onyx told Blue. "Wouldn't ALL the computers have gone off at the same time?"

"That's why I didn't want you poking around inside that thing before the power was checked out."

"Why did you send Scarlet, Blue? That man should be watched carefully!"

"Because I wouldn't dare leave him alone with you."

"So you think he's dangerous?"

‘To risk leaving with you, certainly, Blue thought. But he’s not as dangerous as YOU are. He kept his feelings to himself, merely saying, "He's not that good with computers, he'd probably make the problem worse."

"But would it be accidental?"

Captain Blue was overtired of these comments.  He glared icily at Onyx. "I already told you I trust Captain Scarlet.  Why should I doubt him? Because some idiot who doesn't even know him thinks he knows better? I-"

"Is THAT what you think of me? I’m an idiot?"

"Sorry, Onyx, I'm just... a little tired of all these accusations.  Captain Scarlet is my best friend - Don't you think I know him?"

"I'll stop for now, if you want.  But rule number one in a job like this is NEVER TRUST ANYBODY."

"So why do you trust me?"

"I'm a good judge of character."

Captain Scarlet entered just in time to hear that last remark.  He glared at Onyx for a moment, then turned to Captain Blue.  "Problem solved."

"You sure took your time! What happened?"

"Well, there was no damage done to the cables - I checked them all.  In fact, the problem must have started with the first computer that crashed.  Somehow, that blew a fuse and set off the others.  I've fixed it and cut the power, there should be no further problems."

"You cut the power?" Onyx stared at him. "Why did you do that?"

"Because you wanted to look inside those blasted machines, remember?"

"I'm warning you, Scarlet, don't use that tone on me-"

"Why not? You use a very similar tone on ME."

"Watch it, don't make me lose your temper-"

Blue stood between them, quickly.  "Hey, what's the matter with you two? Remind me, are we meant to be fighting ourselves - or Mysterons?"

Captain Scarlet looked at his feet.  "Sorry, Captain Blue." He paused, glancing at Onyx, "I'm sorry, Onyx-"

"That's OK, I guess."

Captain Blue cleared his throat, staring pointedly at Onyx.

"I'm sorry too."

"That's better." Captain Blue smiled at them both, doing his best to hide the feeling that he was trying to baby-sit two naughty boys.  "Now, maybe we can do our jobs without any more trouble-"

"You won't get any hassle from me," Scarlet assured his partner.

"Me neither," Onyx added quickly.

 

***

 

Captain Scarlet opened the computer that had been causing the problem.  He groaned inwardly as Onyx came and stood directly behind him, peering over his shoulder. 

"What are you doing?" Onyx asked him.

"Trying to find the source of the problem.  Captain, can you move, please? You're making me nervous-"

"Got something to hide?"

"Should I?"

"You tell me."

"Will you give it a rest?"

Scarlet switched on the small but powerful torch at his side, and took a quick look.

"Captain Blue said that you're not very good with computers."

"Really?" Scarlet wasn't really paying Onyx any attention.  The computer was big, and the circuits fiddly.  Suddenly he noticed a small box near the back of the machine.  "What's that?" As he touched it, a sharp feeling shot through his hand and arm.  He jumped back flinching with pain and shock "Yaaahhh!"

Onyx watched with silent amusement, which quickly turned to concern when Blue rushed in.  "Are you OK, Captain Scarlet?"

"No." Scarlet looked down at his hand and winced, "That computer is booby-trapped."

"Great!" Blue muttered, looking carefully at his friends arm.  "You're out of action, and the computers have been Mysteronised!"

"You got one  out of two right - the computer probably WAS tampered with, by Mysterons, but I'm not out of action."

Onyx stared at Scarlet.  What did it take to get him out of the picture?

"At least let me take care of that hand," Blue was saying.

"I'll take care of Scarlet," Onyx offered, quickly. "We need to get this together - right, Scarlet?"

"You mean you want to make up for jarring me."

"Put it that way, if you like."

 

***

 

As Onyx was busy tending to Scarlet, in the small room adjoining the large computer suite, one of the technicians entered and began work on a computer.  Captain Blue offered him help, but the man merely shook his head.

Through the open door, Scarlet watched him for a moment, then turned to Captain Onyx.  "Who is that?"

"Robert Johnson, one of our top computer experts - not as good as me, of course."

Scarlet turned away, rolling his eyes.  As he did so, his head began to ache.  Onyx saw the look on his pale features and, at last was, concerned.  "You alright?"

"N-yes... Yes, I'm fine."

"Are you sure?"

"Yes."

"You know, I heard that Mysterons can't get sick."

"Did you?" Scarlet almost gasped at him.

"Guess that means you're human after all."

"To tell you the truth, Onyx, I AM human, my body is another-" Scarlet stopped abruptly.

"What's the matter? Captain Scarlet? Hey, Scarlet!"

Captain Scarlet was staring at the computer expert.  "This headache, Onyx, is my detector going off."

"Sorry?"

"Did you bring that detector in with you?"

"Yep!"

"Try taking a shot of that guy, will you?"

"Anything you say..." Onyx pointed the detector at Johnson, taking a quick shot.  He and Scarlet scrutinised it carefully.  "Mysteron," they stated, almost in unison.

 

Captain Scarlet rushed into the computer room.  "Adam, evacuate the building, NOW!"

Blue didn't ask his partner what it was all about.  He grabbed Onyx' hand and charged out the nearest exit.

 

***

 

Scarlet rolled on the floor with Johnson.  The technician had a small piece of electricity cable in his hands and was desperately trying to strangle his opponent with it.

Scarlet hit his head against something, which made him dizzy.  I MUSTN'T black out, he told himself, pulling his gun from its holster, but Johnson threw it aside.  "Why... not give... up?" Scarlet panted.

The Mysteron laughed at him.  "Sorry, Earthman! We aim to stop Spectrum, this time! If some of your top bases - excluding Cloudbase - are knocked out, Spectrum will be legless."

Scarlet glared at him.  "I think 'IF' is the key word, there."

He suffered a strong kick to his stomach for that.  "SHUT IT, Mr. Wise Guy!"

Scarlet continued rolling with him, hoping the man would make some kind of mistake.  When he saw that they were close to the computer that Onyx had left open, he deliberately made for it.  Before Johnson had any idea of what was happening, Scarlet threw him into the opening.  As the technician was struggling to free himself, Scarlet ran to the main switch and turned the power on - full.  Sparks began flying from the machines, and Scarlet realised to his horror that they were about to overload.  He tried turning off the switch, but it was jammed.

 

 He bolted from the room, running as fast as he could through the corridor.  Hearing an explosion behind him, he ran all the faster.  As soon as he dared glance behind him, he turned, only to see a huge ball of fire coming at him at great speed.  He came to a fire exit and leaped at it.  He hit the tarmac outside with a sickening thud.

 

Blue ran to his partner's side.  "Are you alright, Captain?"

Onyx waited quietly.  For a moment, it looked as though Scarlet would not get up again, but he saw him lift his head slightly.  Breathing a sigh of relief, Blue helped him up.  Onyx joined the two men.  "Scarlet, I - I'm sorry I didn't help..."

"Don't worry about it." Scarlet winced, holding his stomach, "I... need to sit down...."

Onyx and Blue helped him gently.  The three men watched the building go up.  "Captain Blue," Scarlet said, suddenly, "call Cloudbase.  The Mysterons aim to leave Spectrum legless, by destroying some of our top bases!"

Onyx whistled, "They sure mean business!"

"Yes." Scarlet answered, curtly.  He looked completely drained.

"Right, I'll call Cloudbase." Captain Blue told him, "THEN I'll take you back."

"But-"

"No, I mean it.  You look terrible."

"Alright." Scarlet sighed, then grinned, suddenly as he thought of something, "I wonder if the Cricket is still on...."

Onyx and Blue exchanged glances, then started to laugh.

 

Back on Cloudbase, things were STILL going slowly.  In the Amber Room, the Angels had given up on complaining of boredom - there was no point to it.  Destiny was now in Angel One, and Rhapsody and Symphony were reading.  Symphony sighed, closing her book.  "That is a great novel!"

Rhapsody looked up at her, "Did you read that in ONE day?"

"That's right."

"Well, Time is getting by QUICKLY, isn’t it?”

The loudspeaker above them came to life before Symphony could answer.  "Angels Two and Three, immediate launch."

"FINALLY a bit of action!" Symphony commented, throwing the book away.

 The elevating seats took the two Angel pilots to their planes.

 

***

 

At Koala Base, Captain Magenta had been working busily at the main computer, and hardly even glanced up when someone came to stand behind him.  "What are YOU doing here, Earthman?"

Magenta turned to see Captain Black standing there.  He tried to stay calm, but Black could see fear in his eyes.  The Mysteron chuckled slightly, pulling out a gun.  Magenta had to think fast.  He shoved Black as hard as he could in the legs, and dived for cover as his enemy toppled, firing his gun at the ceiling.

Magenta hid behind the first thing he came to.

Black searched for Magenta, but there was no sign.  The Captain waited until Black was occupied, then ran to another, better hiding place - one of which had already been checked.  Black shot another glance around the room - then spotted an open cupboard door. 

"COWARD!" Knowing better than to stick his head in there, The Mysteron agent slammed the door and locked it.  "I'd like to see you stop me NOW, Earthman!" Black sneered. 

Magenta waited, watching carefully from his hiding place.  He pressed his tracker hard.  Good job I didn't choose to hide in THERE, he told himself, looking at the bolted door.

 

"Angel Leader, this is Colonel White."

Destiny answered the call.  "Angel Leader here."

"Destiny, I would like you to make for Koala Base.  It seems the Mysterons have been making work difficult for Captain Magenta."

"S.I.G."

The Angels made for Australia.  Destiny wondered what the Mysterons could POSSIBLY do to Magenta - the knowledge that they were capable of plenty sent a shiver down her spine.

 

Black was programming something into the main computer system, when a crowd of people rushed into the room.  "What the..?" Black turned.  A large group of Spectrum members had gathered around him.  All of them were armed with Mysteron rifles.  "You ALMOST got me, this time!" Black's statement confused the men before him.  Surely, they HAD him?  The most wanted traitor known to Spectrum vanished, by way of giving his explanation.

Magenta came out of hiding, "He had me in a corner," he explained, sheepishly. "I thought I'd be of more use watching what he did so I can UNDO it."

"You know what he did, Captain?"

"I know what he was GOING to do.  He didn't get very far."

"So you can deal with it?"

"Yes.  It shouldn't take too long." He stopped, remembering the tracker.  "I'd better call Cloudbase and tell them I'm OK."

 

"Destiny Angel,” Colonel White called out, “make for New York.  I can't contact Captain Grey."

"But sir, what about Captain Magenta?" 

"Magenta is fine, a few of the base's members helped him.  He's repairing the damage Black caused."

"S.I.G." Destiny sighed, cutting communication. "Well, THIS had better not be a wild goose chase!"

 

***

 

Captain Grey stared angrily at the two Mysterons before him.  He opened his mouth to speak, but one of the aliens cut him off, "If you're going to say something BORING," -he paused, 'boring' was emphasised with a roll of his eyes- "don't bother.  We Mysterons hear that we'll 'never get away with this' SO many times from Spectrum officers."

"I wasn't going to say anything boring."

"OH, what do you want to say, then?" The exasperated tone made Grey wonder if he SHOULD torment the Mysteron agents.  "Out with it!"

"I was just wondering what you were going to do when my backup arrives." Grey remained calm, despite the gun trained on him.

"You called for help?"

"No, but the Colonel isn't stupid.  He'll guess there's something wrong when I fail to report in."

"Radio Cloudbase.  Tell your Colonel that everything is fine."

"I'm sorry, I can't do that."

The two Agents pulled Grey to his feet; they half led, half dragged him outside, tied him to a tree and gagged him. Captain Grey wanted to do something to stop his enemies, but he knew that there wasn't much he could do alone.  One of the Mysterons plucked his cap from his head, and called Colonel White, while Grey struggled against his bonds.  How could that guy imitate his voice? He'd heard a report of this before, from Captain Scarlet, but had never thought much about it.

A sound above him made him look up.  The Angels came swooping in low over them. Grey sighed with relief.

 

"Angel Leader to Cloudbase," Destiny stated, calmly.

"Go ahead, Destiny," Lieutenant Green's voice answered.

"Lieutenant, two men have Captain Grey bound to a tree-"

"WHAT? Sorry, Destiny, I didn't quite-"

"Two men are holding Captain Grey at gunpoint.  They have tied him to a tree, and it looks as though they have gagged him as well."

"Try to get a shot at those men." Colonel White cut in. "Drive at them,  if you can.  Make it quick!"

"S.I.G., Colonel White." Destiny shivered.  How could they possibly fire at the Mysterons down there when they were so close to Grey? "This is Angel Leader.  Drive the two Mysterons away from Captain Grey, and into the open.  Then we will be able to deal with them!"

Rhapsody and Symphony acknowledged, and the three Angels began the dive.

 

The Mysteron with the gun fired once at Grey, then the pair bolted.  Not long after losing sight of the Mysteron Agents, the Captain heard bursts of gunfire, some cries, and a loud "bang", which must have been some kind of explosion.  Silence followed for what seemed an age.  Captain Grey looked down, assessing the extent of damage the pair had done him.  He had been shot in the leg, but the aim of the gun was bad, and he only had a graze wound.  He was lucky. Suddenly, he heard voices.  He saw Symphony Angel running toward him with one of the men from the centre, who was carrying a first aid kit.

 

"Colonel White," Lieutenant Green turned to his Commander-in-Chief, "All reported Mysterons dealt with."

"Good.  Any news from Spectrum Research Centre?"

"Yes, sir.  Captain Ochre has everything in hand."

"I'm glad to hear it.  I hope he doesn't mind missing the last hour of his leave-"

"I shouldn't think so, Colonel.  By the sound of it, he was having fun."

"We can't have that, can we?" the Colonel chuckled, "I'd better call him."

"Hi, Colonel!" Captain Ochre answered the call eagerly.

"Hello, Ochre.  Have you anything to report?"

“Everything is fine, now, sir.  I had some of the men equipped with detectors.  If anyone seemed to be acting differently, we checked him or her out.  Worked too.  We dealt with two Mysterons!"

"Thank you, Captain.  I trust everything is quiet, now?"

"Yes, sir...  But I'm willing to carry on here."

"When did you find the two Mysteron Agents?"

"Upon arrival, more or less."

"Which was...?"

"Over three hours ago."

"Then I think that will be all.  Return to base."

"Yes sir." Ochre sighed, turning back to the members he had been sitting with, "Sorry, guys.  I've gotta go."

"Just because you're losing!"

"Come on, Frank!" Ochre pulled some notes from his wallet. "That should cover the amount I lost."

 

***

 

Captains Scarlet, Blue, Grey, Magenta, and Ochre joined Colonel White in the Control Room.  "Captain Scarlet, I had a word with Doctor Fawn, a little earlier." Colonel White seemed pretty annoyed about something.

"Really, sir?"

"It means I'll want a word with you later."

"S.I.G., Colonel."

White cleared his throat.  "Now, on a different subject, Captains Scarlet and Blue... how did you find Captain Onyx?"

Captain Blue frowned. "Captain Onyx, sir?"

"Yes.  As you have seen, he's new.  I was a bit worried that he wasn't quite ready."

"He has promise, Colonel." Captain Scarlet stated, generously, "He just needs to know when he is going too far."

"Can you explain?"

"We-ell, sir..." Scarlet did a bad job of hiding his embarrassment, "He didn't trust me as far as he could throw me - AND made it quite clear at every opportunity."

"I'll have to do something about that." the Colonel glared icily at the Captain, "There is no reason to doubt YOUR word, is there, Scarlet?"

Captain Scarlet felt very uncomfortable.  He knew he'd been asking for trouble staying that bit longer with Fawn, but...

"Thank you for your efforts, gentlemen.  You all did a wonderful job." Colonel White stated, "You can go now.  Dismissed." Captain Scarlet began to stand, but the Colonel held him back.  "Tell me, Captain," White began quietly, as soon as the others were gone, "do you like Cricket?"

"Yes, sir.  It's a great sport."

"As Doctor Fawn was telling me.  You said you were with him, earlier?"

"Yes, sir." Captain Scarlet felt as though he was confessing to some terrible crime.  Surely, Fawn wouldn't tell HIM...?

"You and Fawn were in Sickbay, I take it?"

"Well...." NOW Scarlet was torn.  Telling the truth was risky, but lying would be FAR worse.  "No, sir.  We were in the officers' lounge.  It was the-"

"…First Ashes test, Captain?"

"That's right." Scarlet tried not to hang his head. He was just glad that Ochre wouldn't hear about this one.

"I found the good doctor absorbed in the game when I was looking for him.  I was very taken aback when he suggested calling you, to tell you the score."

Scarlet sighed, looking at the desk, rather than his commanding officer.  "It was HIS idea!"

" That's no excuse, Scarlet!  You didn't have to agree."

"It was a kind offer.  Anyway, I didn't expect him to bother me at every boundary."

"I can't believe I'm hearing this!" White hit the desk furiously, then pointed at Scarlet.  "Something will have to be done about this."

The captain sighed heavily, "I'm sorry, sir-"

"If you're so sorry, why are you still trying to defend yourself?"

Scarlet groaned inwardly, then decided that seeing as he was already asking for trouble, he may as well push his luck all the way.  “Did Doctor Fawn tell you the score?"

"I'd say that's the least of your worries, Scarlet." White almost growled at him. "Does the game REALLY mean that much to you?"

"Well... yes.  Why, sir?"

"And I heard Blue got you some tickets to the next match."

"Yes, sir.  I don't know HOW, though.  It must have taken a lot of doing - they're on demand! I'm taking Rhapsody with me - you agreed to it."

"After your behaviour," Colonel White barked at him, "do you expect me to let you go?"

Scarlet sighed and shook his head.  "No, sir.  I couldn't expect you to."

"I wouldn't want to ruin it for Rhapsody...." White continued, slowly.

Scarlet's hopes lifted a little.

"Give me the tickets.  I enjoy Cricket, myself."

Captain Scarlet groaned inwardly, and handed over the tickets.

"Thank you, Captain." The Colonel gave him a cold smile, then gestured to the door.  "Get out.  I'll expect you in here first thing tomorrow."

"Sir?"

"You are to operate the computer.  Now GO!"

 

Outside the Control Room, Scarlet met Captain Blue head on.  Blue smiled warmly at him.  "How'd it go?"

"How do you think?"

"What happened, Paul?"

"Fawn dropped me in it.  The Colonel has taken my tickets to the Ashes test, which you bought me, and he and Rhapsody are going."

Blue winced. "I don't believe it!  Paul, I'll see if I can change his mind-"

"You'll just get yourself in trouble.  Forget it, Adam."

"If that's what you want..."

"Yes, it is.  His mind is made up, end of story."

"Look, there’s still time.  Just hope the Mysterons make another threat tomorrow - the old man will HAVE to forgive you, with all the hard work you put in."

"Don't hold your breath.  Anyway, I'm confined to a computer job." Scarlet sighed, heavily. "I'd better find Diane."

"Are you sure you're OK?" Blue called after his partner, as he turned to go.

"I'll let you know,” was Scarlet’s dull answer as he disappeared behind a sliding door.  

 

 

THE END

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