A Tangled Web, Part 4

“The People’s Liberation Army?”

“That’s the client. Take it or leave it, as you Americans say, although I doubt you’ll find anyone else willing to accede to your terms,” Wu said.

The ‘garden’ was an underground conference room in a hotel owned by Wu’s brother. Flowered wallpaper decorated the walls, hence the term. She faced Wu from across a small table, outfitted with a holo-emitter that played Brahms in the background.

He was right. No other client would have 25 million at its disposal in so short a timeframe. She was lucky to get this opportunity.

“All right,” she said. There would be no papers to sign, just an understanding that she would be hunted down and shot if she reneged.

Wu tapped the table twice with his middle finger. “I just sent you contact instructions for your liaison. Your first meeting is tonight at 8 o’clock. Don’t be late.”

“I won’t. Thank you, Wu.”

“I have touted your skills as being of the highest caliber. My reputation is on the line. Don’t disappoint me,” he warned.

*********************************************

The abandoned warehouse reeked of days-old fish and seawater, just as she expected. She thought skulking around in dark buildings close to the harbor was just for bad noir, but her client seemingly disagreed. Thia wore a levitan shield, designed to repel lason blasts, since she was walking into an unknown situation. She had learned her lesson after getting killed by Nicholle Ryder and being uploaded to a new body. It was not an experience she wanted to repeat. She checked the time in her periphery: seven-thirty. She wanted to get to the place early, to size up the client.

“Hello, Ms. Wayan.”

Apparently the client thought the same thing. Her night vision dialed up, she turned to face a man wearing a black leather jacket and black pants. He reached into his jacket pocket and she palmed her lason, unsure of his intent. His hand came away holding a pack of cigarettes.

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About dohlman

Wright received her master’s degree in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA, and Cog was her thesis novel for the program. An accomplished poet, Wright’s science fiction poem “Doomed” was a nominee for the Rhysling Award, the Science Fiction Poetry Association's highest honor. Her other publications include “Of Sound Mind and Body” in the Bram Stoker award-nominated Sycorax’s Daughters; “Dear Octavia Butler” in the Locus Award-winning and Hugo-nominated Luminescent Threads: Connections to Octavia Butler; “The Haunting of M117” in Genesis: An Anthology of Black Science Fiction; “Cyberpunk Remastered” in the award-winning Many Genres, One Craft; “The Last Stop” in Diner Stories: Off the Menu; “Bequeathal” in Far Worlds; and “Mission: Surreality” in The City. Find her on Twitter @KCeresWright.
Afrofuturism, Cyberpunk, Science Fiction

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