“Agent Price,” Adelaide raised an eyebrow, “hi. What are you doing here?”
“I work here, unless you’d forgotten,” Price shut the door behind him, “what are you doing here?”
“You two know each other?” Francis said, “Who is this guy?”
“I’ll tell you later,” Adelaide hissed.
Price glanced over at the screen behind them.
“You came here to see the Source,” he said, “I’m not stupid.”
“Could’ve fooled me,” Adelaide muttered under her breath, “listen, we were just going to go down to that room and take a look. You wouldn’t mind showing us the way?”
Price smiled and shook his head.
“Sorry,” he said, “I’d love to, but I’ve got orders to escort you from the premises instead. Hope you don’t mind.”
“Unless you hadn’t noticed,” Adelaide gritted her teeth, “we outnumber you five to one. Seems to me you don’t have much of a choice.”
“You’re not suggesting we fight are you?” Price cocked his head.
“You bet I am,” Adelaide grinned.
She raised the rocket bat and charged. Price sidestepped neatly and his foot shot out. Adelaide tripped and went into a roll. When she came up Price’s knee came crashing upwards towards her face. It smashed against her chin and knocked her back.
A whistle made Price made look up. Lee pressed a small catch on the device he carried and the metal disk on top started to spin around. With a slightly crazy laugh Lee flicked another switch and the disk shot off the top and whizzed at Price. He smirked and went low, ducking beneath the spinning blade and knocking Lee off his feet with a sliding tackle. The disk embedded itself into a wall with a thunk.
“Get off Lee please,” Francis punched Price and stamped his foot. There was a click from the ‘vindicators’ and metal spikes slid from the soles. Francis raised them again but Price grabbed him around the ankle.
“With…pleasure,” he grunted, and with a heave pulled Francis into his extended fist. There was the unpleasant sound of Francis’ nose breaking and Price dropped him.
He turned around. Lydia and Emma were looking at him, slightly nervously now. Adelaide was dusting herself off, her glare was icy and she had a cut on her chin.
“Still sure about this?” Price pulled a pair of sunglasses from his pocket and slipped them on, “I can do some cool stuff, you know, despite what the Director says. I didn’t go to spy school for nothing you know.”
“There’s a spy school?” Said Lee from the floor, “Awesome!”
“Lee,” Adelaide said, “stop fraternising with the enemy. As for you, old man, bring it on.”
“I’m not that old,” murmured Price.
Emma looked across Adelaide and nodded. They went for Price together, Emma’s hands igniting. Price rolled his eyes and came in to meet them. Adelaide pressed a button on the rocket bat and the firework strapped to it spurted into life, she swung it down on Price’s head with a blur of force. His hand moved up and caught it and he winced with pain. Shoving the bat back he shoved the sparking end of the firework into Adelaide’s face. She let go of the bat and scrambled back, putting up her hands to protect herself. Price threw the bat up into the air, caught it deftly by the handle and spun, smashing it into Emma’s cheek. She grunted, stepped back and unholstered the home-made flamethrower.
Price grinned and advanced but hopped back with a yelp of surprise when he was met with a spurt of flame. Now it was Emma’s turn to smile and she stepped forward slowly. Price shrugged, then he feinted left, moved right and went to grab Emma’s arm. She turned, but he was too close to flame. Dropping the weapon she ignited her arm with a flick of her wrist instead, the flames catching at her sleeve. Price let go and moved out of the way of her other arm as it swept towards him. He felt someone grab him round the neck and hold him in place. Lee. Emma smirked and moved in, burning hands reaching for him.
With a snort Price leapt and somersaulted over his attacker, forcing him to let go. Landing behind Lee, he shoved him into the path of Emma. The two thumped together and Lee’s t-shirt caught on fire.
Price straightened himself. A twinge in the muscles of his back made him wince.
“Maybe I am getting old,” he said to himself.
Adelaide was coming at him again, throwing wild, unthinking punches. He deflected them with relative ease and keeping her at bay with strikes of his own.
“This would be so much easier if you just let me throw you out,” he said between blows, “we should be working together, not fighting. I’ve got a job for you as it happens, something that could really help your cause.”
“Well I don’t trust you anymore,” Adelaide said through gritted teeth, “not you, not the Director, not anyone in this organisation. I want to know exactly what you want with my ancestor’s notes and what this Source really is.”
“We want what we’ve always wanted,” Price replied calmly, “equal treatment for super-humans and normals.”
“How’s that working out?” Adelaide struck home. Price put a hand to his jaw with a moan of pain, “I notice the Department hasn’t raised a finger to deal with the serial super-human murderer on the loose.”
“We’re on the case,” Price said. He glanced down at his watch. Time to end this.
“You know you’re a really good fighter,” he said, bringing his hand down on Adelaide’s shoulder. She grabbed his wrist and he punched her, tripping her as she fell forward and stepping back as she crashed into the ground.
“But I play dirty,” he said quietly.
He turned to look around the room. The others were lying on the floor or slumped on chairs, moaning or nursing their wounds. Only Lydia remained standing, clutching her small hammer nervously.
“Do you want to drop that and come quietly?” Price said, reading the fear in her eyes. She nodded and dropped the hammer. There was a small bang and shower of sparks as it hit the floor and Lydia jumped back in terror.
Rolling his eyes Price pulled out his walkie-talkie.
“Hey Director,” he said into it, “remember we were talking about a pay rise earlier?”