Chapter 3: A Secret is Found Out
by Mary Christmas (unicorn_76010 at lycos.com)
Sherlock Holmes quietly followed Martin Fenwick to the hovercar. As
the disfigured geneticist took off, Holmes jumped on to the back. A few
minutess later, the hovercar stopped at an apparently deserted warehouse.
Holmes crouched lower as James Moriarty walked out, carrying a box, and
climbed into the vehicle.
The hovercar again took off, this time heading for the airport.
Holmes waited until Moriarty and Fenwick were well out of sight, before he
followed their direction. Covertly, he studied the boarding list at one of
the stations. Two names caught his eye. Professor James Mortan and Dr.
Martin Fenton. Nodding to the attendant he bought a ticket, and then
boarded that transport. He moved into a compartment at the back, where he
could see everything that went on.
Two hours later, they were out over the middle of the Atlantic
Ocean, when a voice came over the loudspeaker. "Terribly sorry you had to
go, Mr. Holmes. I am certain you would have enjoyed where I was going
immensely. Bon voyage." Before Holmes could react, his seat was ejected
from the transport and he felt himself falling through the air. Seconds
later, he hit the water, and went under. Holding his breath, he undid the
safety harness, and swam to the surface. As he broke the surface, he
looked up to see that the transport was nothing more than a speck in the
sky. Resolutely he began to swim in the direction the transport had taken.
Several hours later, the sky darkened, and Holmes was tiring. He stopped
and treaded water for a little while, then started swimming again. It was
pitch black when he lost consciousness.
"Geez, according to these scans, this guy's been out there for
twelve hours. How in the world did he survive?" Holmes opened his eyes
to see a woman looking down at him. She had short blond hair and a
sprinkling of freckles across her nose. She couldn't be older than
twenty-five at the most.
"Hey, Mister," she said, "How many fingers am I holding up?" She
held up three fingers.
"Three," Holmes answered promptly.
"Well, at least his brain is functioning," the woman said.
Holmes sat up to look at everything else, but lay back down,
groaning as a wave of dizziness engulfed him. He waited until it passed
and sat up more slowly. There were two other people, besides the girl
who had spoken. He smiled and nodded to them. "Perhaps you could tell
me where I am?" he asked.
The bald, black man looked concerned. He reminded Holmes of
Wiggins, which brought a smile to his face.
"No, I do not have amnesia; my good sir, I merely do not know my
precise location. The last thing I remember is swimming in the Atlantic."
"Hmph," the third person in the room growled. He was an older man
with a weatherbeaten face. "What were you doing out there, anyway? Must
be crazy," the man said in a gruff voice.
The woman nodded in agreement, while the black man sighed. "You're
aboard an aircraft carrier. That's all I can say."
"Ah...I see. American, no doubt, judging from your accents. You
work with the Big Guy?"
Instantly, the three stiffened. "Mister, I don't know who you are,
but that is classified information," the woman said, her eyes flashing
Holmes put his hands up. "I apologize for startling you. The
symbol on your hat," he nodded at the old man, "is a picture of the Big
Guy. I merely deduced that you must be affiliated with him, based on that
and on the fact that this is an aircraft carrier."
The black man smiled. "It's all right. I guess it is pretty obvious
once you think about it. My name's Garth, this is Jo," he said, pointing
to the woman, "and this is Mack." Mack glared at Holmes but said nothing.
"I take it you pulled me from the water?" Holmes asked.
"Actually, the Big Guy did," said a voice from somewhere behind him.
Holmes turned to look, and saw a clean-cut man wearing an American military
uniform. The rank appeared to be that of lieutenant. "I'm Lieutenant
Dwayne Hunter," the man said, extending his hand, "the Big Guy's chief
mechanic. And you are?"
Holmes debated on whether or not to tell the truth, then decided
that these people would more readily believe a lie. He took Hunter's hand
and shook it. "The name's Jeremy Street. I was on vacation and had to
jump from the transport. Unfortunately, my parachute broke before I hit
the water, and I had to cut it off. That's when I started swimming in the
direction the transport went. I am glad you found me when you did."
Hunter nodded. "Yeah, I...the Big Guy was just in the area for a
test flight, when he saw you. He brought you back here."
To any other person, Hunter's slip would have gone unnoticed. But
Holmes was more observant than most people, and he caught it. Filing it
away for later, he asked, "I don't suppose you can tell me if the transport
I was on landed at its destination, can you? All my luggage was on it."
Hunter shook his head. "Not unless you have the serial number.
Which you shouldn't have, not if you are who you say you are."
Holmes shrugged. He hadn't had time to find that, before boarding.
"Well, then I suppose I shall have to go to the station and ask them."
"Why'd you have to jump, Mr. Street?" Hunter asked.
"My compartment was faulty, and I didn't have time to move to
another one. It would have endangered countless lives."
The American nodded, but still looked suspicious. Holmes groaned
and pretended to have a dizzy spell. That effectively forestalled any more
questions. As the four people filed out of the room, Holmes lay thinking.
He needed to find a way off the carrier, and into Newtronic City, the
destination of the transport, and most likely Moriarty.
As Slate walked back to her lab, her mind reeled. The substance
Professor Mortan had introduced was a large step in robotics. It was also
dangerous. It could make an army of sentient robots, more powerful than
any human army, or maybe even the Big Guy. Slate shuddered and stepped
into her lab. She gasped at what she saw. There were wires and tools
"Yeah, Dr. Slate?" the boy robot asked, popping up from behind an
overturned table. The puppy popped up beside him, his toungue hanging out
of his mouth. They both wore identical innocent expressions, and Slate
found it hard to be stern. She wondered if this was how her father had
felt whenever she and Beth did anything wrong. She quickly suppressed the
thought and put her hands on her hips.
"Rusty, you know better than to mess with these things without
permission. No web surfing for three days."
"Awww...Dr. Slate...three whole days?"
She gave him a stern glance and he sighed. "I'm sure as shootin'
sorry. Me and Pup'll clean up the mess."
Images of what might happen filled her mind and she said, "That
won't be necessary, Rusty. Why don't you go take Pup to meet Big Guy?"
Rusty immediately cheered up. "Okay! Power up!" He picked the puppy
up and flew out his access tunnel.
Slate moved to the vidphone and called Dwayne. It was only fair to
warn him, after all.
When she finished the call, she was frowning. Something about that
visitor on the Dark Horse didn't set right with her. It seemed too
much of a coincidence that three British men had come to the States at the
same time. She cleaned the lab up, then walked to Donovan's office. If she
could get Jenny to tell her why she didn't trust Professor Mortan and Dr.
Fenton, then that would be a start.
Holmes waited until everything was silent, then walked out of the
room he was in. He had seen maps of the inside of aircraft carriers, and
almost all of them were the same. Granted, this one would have special
features due to the fact that it was the Big Guy's home. It would still
be a simple matter.
Making his way towards the stairs, he heard a loud noise coming
from the opposite direction. Deciding to go investigate, he followed the
sound. Soon he came upon a large room where three of the four people he
had met were standing around a robot that looked like a little boy. 'That
must be Rusty,' Holmes thought. He stared at the three humans. Mack,
Garth and Jo. But where was Lieutenant Hunter? He stepped in and hid
behind a low table.
"Kid," Mack said gruffly, "get that thing...yeck!" A small mixed
breed puppy had just licked the old man on the cheek.
"Well, what do we have here, son?" a booming voice asked.
"Big Guy!" the boy robot exclaimed, "This is my new pal Pup." The
robot picked the puppy up and carried it over to the giant robot. "Hey,"
Rusty said, "Where's Lieutenant Dwayne? I want him to meet Pup too, ya
Holmes strained to hear what the answer would be. The three humans
hemmed and hawed, until Big Guy finally said, "He..uh went to Newtronic
City to do some shopping. Humans have to eat, you know."
"Oh, okay. He can meet Pup later."
Holmes frowned. Hunter would not have had enough time to get to the
mainland after he had questioned Holmes. The lieutenant must be Big Guy.
There was enough evidence to support the fact that The Big Guy could just
be an exosuit. After all, Artificial Intelligence was still in the
experimental stages, when the Big Guy was brought into operation.
Holmes waited when the boy robot had left. His patience was
rewarded when a hatch opened on Big Guy, and Lieutenant Hunter came out.
"Good thing Dr. Slate was kind enough to warn you the kid was
coming, huh, Dwayne?" Garth asked.
Hunter nodded. Then he turned and looked directly at Holmes.
"All right, come out and tell us who you really are."
Holmes stood up from behind the table and smiled. "I am Sherlock
On to Part 4!
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