Maria DeMarco never thought that she would find trouble amongst her many businesses. After all they were the public face of where her money came from. She was after all a retired Prima Ballerina and like most such women she invested her money wisely. But trouble she did find and in the one place she would never have thought to look. One of the schools she loves and sponsors. Can the Black Badge Deputies ferret out the people behind the troubles before Gemini has to deal with Gym Class?
by Snowfall and Jessie Wolf.
Dedicated to the men and women of the US Marshal Service.
Edited by my husband Paul, and AJC Snowfall.
Ram's Rock Island, 0730:
Kasey, Kristine, and Anna had watched the Deputies fly out the night before, heading for South Carolina. Now it was time for them to leave the island. Kasey and Kristine stood looking at the things laid out on the table in front of them.
"Whoa!" Kristine said. "We like, actually get stuff!"
Lyssa nodded. "You ARE going on an operation. This is your load-out. Kim."
"Alright girls. Listen close." Kimberly snapped, gaining their attention. "This is your real gear. The pressed powder compact has six tracking dots. They will last twenty-four hours and have a half mile range. They work off cellular towers. You can track them using your phones and laptops. We can also track them. The newest scanners will find them."
The compacts were closed and tucked into their purses. "Yes Ma'am."
Kimberly nodded and pointed to the blush compact. "The blush has audio bugs. Twenty-four hour battery and will pick up EVERYTHING within fifty feet. You have ten bugs, make them count. Your phones and laptops have the receivers. Range is an eighth of a mile. You can set a relay and we can listen too."
As the compacts were closed and tucked into purses, Lyssa stepped up and held out her hands.
"Barrettes?" Kasey asked.
"Multi-purpose. Yes, they will hold your hair back. They also contain the five most frequently needed lock-picks and a tension bar. Also is a small three inch Tungsten Carbide blade. Have this on you at all times." Lyssa instructed as she showed the girls then affixed them into their hair.
"What's this?" Kristine asked, pointing at a small plastic box the size of a deck of cards.
Lyssa opened one identical and began laying out the contents. "Survival kit. Standard issue. Wire, matches, fishing line, fish hooks, needles, thread, water purification tablets, foil and multi-function tool. The box will confuse most airport metal detectors."
Kimberly handed them both a wallet. "Identity cards, credit cards, cash. You have a thousand in U.S. Five hundred Swiss and five hundred Euro. The credit cards have a five grand limit, save all receipts. Anything over a hundred dollars and we'll know. You know the pins already. The cards trace back to a Swiss bank, normal for European diplomats' personal funds."
Krystel stepped up to the table and took over. "Laptops. They look standard IBM with Windows OS. Actually they are the same as ours. You know the features and security already from your parents'. Phones, same. They work off cell towers unless no signal for one full minute then switch automatically to satellite until cell is available. Regular and encrypted capability. Sub-screen requiring password brings you the bugs and trackers."
The two teens packed the electronics into carry-cases with their phones into their purses. Anna stood to back wondering why she was needed and wearing such a nice suit.
Kimberly laid out three attaché cases and waved Anna forward.
"Standard issue among most diplomatic dependents and staff. Anna this is you." Kimberly pointed to one and opened it.
Anna looked inside. "All this I'm allowed to carry? I don't have to hide it?"
Kimberly nodded her head. "It's diplomatic so it can't be searched by anyone, but Spanish officials. Vienna Convention: articles 24, 27 and 37. Yes, remember those numbers. All the girls' school papers, Guardianship papers, Student Visas, medical papers, briefing papers for the school. You give those to the Headmistress and she keeps them. All others, she copies and gives you back the originals. Standard issue nine millimeter semi-automatic Glock, holster and three magazines. Nine millimeter jacketed ball rounds, standard NATO-issue. Keep that in the case until you get to South Carolina."
Lyssa had been showing the girls their own cases. "DSS, Diplomatic Security Service Agent Sara Denton, Shawna; will meet you outside Customs in D.C. Girls, do not object to your purses being checked. Only flash the diplomatic status when these cases come up and for nothing else. That's S.O.P. You have nothing to hide. Now the attaché cases are totally different story. In them are the following, ten tracking dots, twenty long rage burst transmission bugs, and twenty short range continuous transmission bugs, one full set of lock picks, ten pinpoint cameras, fifteen wide angle cameras, cigarette cameras, and ten nanny cams that you can disguise as needed. All of which can be monitored by both laptops and cellphones. Usual manner for connect on both." As Lyssa listed what was in the two briefcases Kasey and Kristine nodded their heads. They knew that this wasn't the normal load out for surveillance work. This was a complete surveillance work drop kit.
"Mrs. Kimberly are these mikes and cameras Bluetooth or Wi-Fi?" Kristine asked first.
"Can we piggy back off the cellphone boosters within dorms?" Kasey was already trying to figure out work around in case of signal drop.
Kimberly chuckled. "Yes, the mikes are Bluetooth and will pick up the nearest Wi-Fi network to bounce their signal. The cameras are all Wi-Fi capable and will automatically link with the nearest open network. As for using the emergency cellphone boosters those are off limits kiddos. Before you ask it is for your safety. Those boosters are wide open and any signal on them is fair game."
"Got it. Keep Comms secure above all else. That includes all surveillance channels." Kristine answered. "Do we know if the school dorms have hard phone-lines? If they do is there an access we can tap?"
"What are you thinking Kristine?" Kimberly asked.
Kristine explained. "I don't know about these schools, but if they are anything like my old school back in Toledo, they don't allow cellphones in school. They will actually have cellphone blockers in hallways."
"Well, you'll be glad to know that AEGS, and SRMA, both allow their students to keep and carry cellphones in school. Which is good and bad. As for your cellphones, all three are the standard models that everyone else uses. Anna, yours though has a special app that will allow you to link with any of the six team members and track them. Most especially with Gemini, as they are YOUR main concern." Kimberly smiled.
"Thank you Mrs. Kimberly, I am sure Madam will be most pleased when I tell her this. She does so worry over her granddaughters." The maid smiled as the two teenagers blushed. "Will it also link with the Madam?"
"Yes. As a matter of course, the Madam's also has the same feature. Only yours and hers have that feature. Please be so kind as to remind the Madam of this fact? Also she may track you. We can track you all. We can also remote activate your phones." Kimberly informed Anna, who smiled and nodded.
Kimberly closed the cases. "Shawna will meet you at Customs. Remember that she is DSS Agent Sara Denton this time. You'll ride a diplomatic limo to the Spanish Embassy. The Colonel will meet you at the gate. You follow him inside and register. This will take an hour and is S.O.P. Then Shawna will lead you back out to the limo and you go to the private airfield. She'll fly you to South Carolina and ride with you to the school in a contract limo. After the girls are accepted to the school, Anna you will meet up with Maria and Shawna will be taken back to the airfield."
"You're wondering why all that." Lyssa said then explained. "This is to maintain your legend. You are claiming to be Spanish diplomatic dependents. These are things they would do. They officially enter countries and register at their Embassy. You have every reason to do this and would not hide it. If you did, people would notice and ask questions."
"Yes Ma'am." The girls answered.
Anna nodded. "This is new to me, but that does make sense."
"One last thing." Kimberly said then held up what looked like an air-charge hypodermic gun. "Bend over. Skirts up."
Kristine gulped. "Um. What's that for Mrs. Kimberly?"
"So we can track your asses." Lyssa replied flatly. "Not negotiable."
Kasey leaned over the table and hiked up the back of her skirt. Kimberly swabbed a spot on her butt with alcohol then injected her right buttock.
"OH FUCK! WHAT WAS THAT? IT'S HUGE!" Kasey yelped.
Kristine was injected next and didn't hold back either to screech. "HOLY SHIT! THAT IS BIG!"
Kimberly held up what looked like a three inch flexible ribbon. "This is what I just implanted you with. This is a tracking device. It's bio-organic. That means it will not show up on anything other than an MRI. Also, it won't cause a problem if you are scanned by one. This will be in you for a year before it breaks down completely. Actually, it's harmless."
"What about batteries?" Kasey complained.
Kimberly smirked. "You're the battery. It runs off bio-electricity. You power it."
"Ha-ha Prima Lyssa. Track our asses. Very funny." Kristine grumped. "Didn't think you actually meant that literally."
Krystel commented. "You'll be thankful for those, when your ass is on the line."
Kimberly nodded. "Yep. You'll definitely want to be found when your butt's in a sling."
Anna couldn't resist and jumped in. "BOTTOM line, you'll be protected."
"This is what we have to look forward to, ASS jokes for the operation." Kasey groaned.
Rodrick came in. "You got them Stocked, Popped and ready to Rock?"
"R.O.E.s" Kimberly said.
"R.O.E.s?" Anna asked.
Lyssa nodded. "Rules of Engagement. You two will engage ONLY IF ENGAGED. You are cleared to go hand-to-hand, temporary to mild damage, discourage stupidity. If an adult is involved you are cleared to use batons and inflict mild to moderate damage. Off school grounds you may inflict whatever damage short of permanent to minors. Adults, you are cleared to permanently incapacitate by whatever means available. If you are compromised, you may utilize your sidearm and shock-gloves to exfiltrate to the extraction point."
"Yes Prima Lyssa." Kasey and Kristine answered.
Kimberly gave them the last part. "If Lyssa, Shawna or Krystel show up you WILL clear the AO, Area of Operation, without question. Are we CLEAR?"
"YES MA'AM!" Both teens called out.
"We remember. Just like Prima Lyssa instructed us last night. We're a pair of Castilian Ladies, Justinian and Angeles Carmen. We're the granddaughters of Spain's envoy with NATO, Colonel Rolando Carmen. We are to avoid active contact from all primary unsubs. Our job is Intel collection only. Deal only with the bullies, but no doctors' visits on school grounds. Above all else we are to exfiltrate at the first sign of trouble not within OUR assigned mission. If the primary members of the Black Badges get in deep, we are not to come to the rescue. We get out and call for the Calvary." Kasey ran the list of parameters that Lyssa had laid out for them to follow. "Murphy's Sixteenth Law of COMBAT. No OPLAN ever survives initial contact intact."
"They're all yours." Lyssa said to Rodrick.
"Boots and saddles girls. We're riding out." Rodrick waved them to follow to the Bell helicopter.
Anna smiled at the man that she knew was more than just a rogue. Anna admired Rodrick like she did all the young men and women here on the island. To her they were all just as Honorable as ANY member of the DeMarco or Capizeo families.
The two teens were excited about leaving the islands for their first operation, but knew that this it was into danger that they travel. Something was very wrong where they were going. What that was they only had a small idea, but they were determined to prove themselves. After giving three of their mentors a quick hug, the girls headed outside.
"Lyssa, do you really think that those three are ready for this?" Kimberly asked the senior Operator.
"They are more than ready for something like this. Those two can handle a pack of bullies, find the leak and expose whoever it is. They might even straighten out of a few of those over indulged princesses while they're at it. No, the problem will be holding them back if things go pear-shaped. That is something they are not ready for, not by a long shot." Lyssa told them. "As for Anna, don't let that quite demeanor and formal ways fool you. That woman is the personal maid for a family of assassins. She can handle her duties just fine."
Lyssa left the rest unsaid. The other two Operators put two and two together quickly. To be the personal maid for the DeMarco’s, someone had to be just as deadly as any of the DeMarco’s.
"That old woman has been in the employ of the DeMarco family for over thirty years. Do you really think that she hasn't learned a thing or two? Hell, I would give you even odds that Anna could teach us all a thing or two about poisoning someone. Probably right out of Lucrezia's how-to book." The smirk on Lyssa's face let the other two know that she was way ahead of them on certain fronts.
Savannah River Military Academy, Akin, South Carolina, 0800:
The school was a buzz over the news about the two new instructors. Word had it that they were both Sergeant First Classes and real combat vets. That they had just come out of the European Theater and were just here to finish the time off until Retirement. The fact that the new teachers were also Airborne Rangers and Special Forces just added to the mix.
The first cadets to meet the two instructors was the American History Class during first period. The word quickly spread that Sergeant First Class Taugh was as hard as his name sounded. The ones who had Sergeant First Class Everbrite found that he really knew his stuff when it came to Civics and Social Studies. Both men had shown up earlier that morning in the same black F-350 pickup. The really BIG difference between them and the rest of the Academy Staff, these two teachers were NCOs. Both gave off the attitude that their time was not to be wasted and no special considerations were to be expected.
Most of the cadets of SRMA had a real respect for these men. They showed that even the Enlisted men they would one day hopefully command were just as smart, if not smarter, than the Officers. Also those same Enlisted had what most young officers didn't, experience. There were some cadets though, that were not happy seeing the new instructors. Those three young men were not happy at all.
Bradly and Thomas Henley, along with Stephen Gilroy, were following the orders of their parents. The fact that they were still trying to find out who was the former slaves was driving the three boys crazy. Their attempts at hacking the school's student data had failed at every turn. The fact that their sisters had been able to get that information within three days was a sore spot among the boys.
"I thought we got the word out to the subs that they're not welcome here? Where the hell did these two fucks come from? Well Steve you got any answers for us?" Bradly started asking.
"They’re not normal subs you dipshit. Those two are straight out of the DOD. Regular Army. Didn't you get a look at their uniforms?" Stephen asked his two friends. "Dude those guys are the real FUCKING deal. Not like most of the teachers here who are National Guard and Reservists. Those types don't scare easy. They're used to facing off against terrorist and hardcore combat troops. They're not going to just run away at stories and vague threats." Stephen Gilroy had tried his best to crack the school records on the two new instructors to no profit.
"What are they a pair of Fags? I mean they come out of nowhere, driving through the main gates in the same truck. They got to have wives or fuck toys. Come on, man. You have more connections than anyone else for fuck's sake." Thomas pointed out.
"Dude! Don't you get it! The only records on those two are in the Old Man's and Gunny's offices. And there is no way any of us are going to get into those offices. If you think I'm going to break into their offices, you're out of you minds." Stephen was very quick to point out.
"Well I should be able to get us more on at least one of them next period. I got American History next with that Taugh, monkey." Thomas told his friend and brother.
"What about you Brad?" Stephen asked.
Brad nodded. "I've got Civics with the Everbrite shithead. So yeah, I should be able to find out more about him. What do you have next Steve?"
"I got study hall. I'll text Mary Sue over at AEGS to see if they have any new teachers. I have a feeling that Colonel Boatwright and Mrs. Scarlet have brought in a couple of ringers. I wouldn't put it past the two of them to try something like that." Stephen answered.
"Yeah that feels right. Personally, I don't get why our folks are so set on shutting down these schools. I mean they go through the trouble of getting us enrolled here, then have us start causing all kinds of shit. It doesn't make any sense to me." Bradly complained.
"They want the schools to be closed down so that they can buy them, on the cheap. The amount of money that follows through places like this, is crazy. Between the operation costs, tuitions, uniform purchases, and everything else these places are damn near tailor-made for money laundering. The only thing better are those T-shirt shops, bars and restaurants down on the beach. At a rough guess, I would say that you could run anywhere from fifty to seventy-five thousand a week though a school like this. Then there is the fact that you can basically blackmail all those parents by threating the kids. Think about it man. How many of our fellow students are the sons or daughters of CEOs, or Politicians?" Stephen couldn't believe how closed minded his two friends were.
"Damn dude! That is just twisted! How did you ever think that shit up?" Bradly asked bluntly.
"I learned to think that way from my dad, dude. Why do you think that the Gilroy’s are top dogs in South Carolina? We look at every opportunity that comes along and figure out how to make it work for US. The only reason the Henley’s have what they do, is thanks to our grandfathers' peace treaty. If not for the treaty both families would have lost way too much to the Feds. Now get me what Intel you can on the new subs. And for once, will you two boneheads remember that you're Henley’s." Stephen Gilroy drove the point home that he was the top dog at SRMA.
Stephen stood back and watched as the two Henley boys walk off. He knew they would do as they were told. The Henley family learned long ago to follow the Gilroy’s. It didn't matter what the Henley’s tried they still had to follow the Gilroy’s. That is the way it had been and that is the way it would always be. Stephen knew that he had those two in his pockets already, now he just had to get their sister Chantel to do as she was told. His sister Adaline was toeing the line their father had set out for them, just like the high price whore she was.
Akin Equestrian Girls School, 0730:
Sam and Annette walked into the main building with all the grace of ballerinas. As they walked the hallways the students were looking on in awe. None of them had ever seen a woman, much less two at the same time, walk that way. It was as if the student body were looking at a pair of runway models. The two women were both graceful and beautiful at the same time in ways that each girl wanted to be. Neither Sam nor Annette paid any attention as they headed for the main administration office.
As they walked through the door the girl behind the counter looked at them both. "Good morning ladies, can I help you?"
"Yes, you can young lady. Is the Headmistress in? We're the substitute teachers Mrs. DeMarco arranged for; Mrs. Everbrite." Sam said pointing at herself then over at Annette. "And Mrs. Taugh."
"Oh, um, yes ma'am. Um, we weren't expecting the two of you until next week ma'am. Um, Mrs. Scarlet isn't in her office right now. Um, if you want you can wait for her in the Teachers' breakroom." Both women could tell that the teenager was extremely unsettled by their arrival.
"We'll wait here for her. Thank you anyway young lady and do NOT slouch. Shouldn't you be trying to get the Headmistress for us?" Sam let her displeasure be known over the girl's lack of professionalism.
Annette glared at her as well. "You WILL stop that incessant stuttering this minute!"
"Yes, ma'am. Right away, ma'am." Chantel Henley didn't like the way these two bitches were treating her, as if they were better, but knew that she had to keep her cover. Turning to the intercom system, Chantel turned on the mike. "Would Headmistress Scarlet please return to the main office at once."
Turning back to Sam and Annette she found they were standing by the chairs. She looked carefully at their clothing. The suits fit them very well and the high heels looked expensive. Their hair looked like they came straight from a salon and make-up seemed professionally done as well. If she had to guess, everything about them was designer label, not knock-offs.
It wasn't long before Scarlet Boatwright returned to the office. As she walked through the door, out of the corner of her eye she saw two young, professionally dressed, ladies. "Thank you Chantel for paging me. Can I help you ladies? I am Mrs. Scarlet Boatwright the headmistress for this school. And who might you be?"
"Annette Taugh and Samantha Everbrite, Mrs. Boatwright." Annette said as she introduced herself and Sam. "Mrs. DeMarco should have informed you that we were coming?"
Scarlett's face showed true surprise. "Oh my, YES. Yes, Maria said that she knew of a few substitutes that could fill in for me. I thought that you ladies weren't due in until tomorrow?"
"Our husbands were able to get us an earlier MAC Flight for us all. We landed in Columbia last night. Thanks to Mrs. DeMarco, we were able to get someplace to stay until our husbands can arrange for a more permanent place for us." Sam explained to the older woman.
"WONDEFUL! Charles will be over the moon! Well, let me show you ladies to your assigned rooms. Might I know which classes the two of you are here to teach, so I can direct you to the correct rooms?" Scarlet was almost beside herself at the fact she had two substitute teachers. AS it was, the school had been unable to hire even one. Someone had leaked the death threat notices to the teachers' union. Not even the subs in Georgia were willing to drive the twenty miles to teach.
"Sam is our History expert, Mrs. Scarlet. I'm here to cover for your English classes." Annette told Scarlet as they walked the hallways.
"OH thank goodness! Those are the two we need the most. Did Mrs. DeMarco contact you ladies by chance?" Scarlet was looking hard at Annette. "May I ask you something Mrs. Taugh?"
"I'll save you the question Mrs. Scarlet. Madam Maria is my mother and Samantha's aunt. Yes, we both dance, but life took us away from the stage. To be honest, it was our husbands." Annette smiled at the woman.
"May I know where you ladies have been teaching?" Scarlet asked. "I need to know for our records and to assure the school board."
"We've been working for the DOD, overseas, teaching the dependents of our military while our husbands did their duty, Mrs. Scarlet. Most of the time, we dealt with the sons and daughters of Enlisted." Sam answered.
"Oh, so you ladies don’t have experience dealing with high-strung personalities?" Scarlet asked.
Sam stopped them in the middle of the hallway with a sad smile.
"Mrs. Scarlet, if there is one thing that is HIGH-STRUNG it is Military Dependents. Those kids get up every morning and go to school, knowing that they could come home to a single parent home, every day. When they're in a foreign country, you have to add in the fact that they're targets for terrorists and so on, things get ramped up to a whole new level. Yes, their schools are on some of the most heavily guarded land in the world, but that doesn't lessen these facts. Those kids live day to day with those facts always in their heads and on their minds. If you throw in the normal every day BULLSHIT of high school, things become really unstable. We have been trained to look for the signs of bullying. Unlike civilian children, military dependents KNOW how to use firearms. They learn how to defend themselves in hand to hand combat, in multiple martial arts forms. All of these factors make them dangerous. This is what we have been working around." Sam sighed then looked at the girls around them.
"All these young ladies come from rich and powerful families, Mrs. Scarlet. In short, pampered and mostly spoiled. They have never known that kind of pressure. I pray that they never do. However, the children we have been teaching are the sons and daughters of soldiers who are trained in many things. However, they are first and foremost killers and those parents have a constant habit of passing on their knowledge to their children." Sam let her voice and tone carry on purpose so the students around them heard.
"My word, Mrs. Everbrite. You don't pull your punches, do you?" Scarlet had let her own voice carry. She could tell that Sam and Annette were up to something, but what that was she had no clue. "I take it that you are more elegant with your students?"
"Of course, ma'am. However, please understand that our teaching methods are a little unorthodox, but they do get results. None of our students have EVER failed to learn their lessons." Annette said pointedly.
"Just so long as you don't swing from the lights, do what you always have, ladies. I'll let you ladies get to your classes. Unfortunately my greatest need right now is in the 3-E Classrooms. Mrs. Everbrite, yours is here, room 114. Mrs. Taugh, yours is across the hall, room 115." Scarlet smiled and headed back to the office. "Oh, and Ladies, I expect to see the two of you at lunch. Teachers eat with their students here."
Meanwhile back in the main office:
Chantel Henley didn't like the fact that the two subs had shown up a day early. She knew that her brothers would want to know, so they could pass this information on to Steve. The problem was she would have to wait until after her work period. The office staff frowned upon cellphone use in the office. The fact that their subs were here now, meant that the boys' subs would be arriving today as well.
At ten minutes to eight, Chantel looked over at the Headmistress' secretary. "Miss Billings, can I leave early? I forgot to get my Science book from my locker."
"Seeing as how you are normally so on top of things dear, you can. However, don't make a habit of it." The secretary stated.
"Yes ma'am. It's just with all the excitement of having to fight my way through those reporters at the main gate this morning, I forgot what class I had first thing." Chantel knew that the secretary would buy her excuse.
"Oh, of course dearie. I wish those imbeciles would just crawl back into whatever hole they crawled out of. Now run along, before you're late for class." The secretary just went back to her typing.
Chantel hadn't gotten twenty feet from the office before her hands were full and the texts were flying. There was no WAY she was going to be the one to screw up their parents' plan. One way or another this school, and her brothers', were going to belong to the Henley’s and Gilroy’s. There was just far too much future power walking these halls for it to not be in their control. The LOG party made the mistake of working with adults past their prime. The Henley’s and Gilroy’s had mastered the art of the long game, before the rest of the South even knew there was a game to play.
The first text went to her mother. 'Mother 2 new teachers. Both former DOD patsies. Will let you know more later. Need to find out more 1st.'
Her next text was to her father. 'Papa new teachers arrived early. Need Intel. Both former DOD. Saw their files as I put them away. Sending pix of files. Get Bobby Lee on it.'
The next one was sent to her brother Bradly. 'New faces in the teachers' lounge. What about your end?'
Her last one went to her friend and roommate Mary Sue Gilroy. 'Heads up roomie. New teachers walking the halls. Not normal, both former DOD teachers. History and English teachers.'
She hadn't even got her phone put back in her purse before it buzzed. She looked down and saw it was a text reply from Mary Sue. 'In History 101 Now. Everbrite real bitch. Watch your ass in English. Already heard Taugh takes no prisoners.'
Chantel had just reached her locker when the text from her brother chimed. 'Chan need Intel on two new Teach. Both Regular Army. Any chance on you hacking our SDB?' Chantel just shook her head at the stupidity of her brother's request. As if she could or even would hack their school's server. Sure she could get into AEGS with no problem, but the SRMA was one of those damned DOD servers. Chantel sent her reply in just a few words. 'Get real you twit!' Chantel put her phone away and headed for class.
She had just stepped through the door when she was stopped dead by a voice that was cold as an iceberg. "I hope that you have a pass for being late young lady." Chantel turned to see the well-dressed woman in her mid to late twenties with raven black hair for earlier. "Well? Speak up young lady."
"Yes ma'am. I have a pass. Here it is." Chantel handed over the pass she took every day from the office. "I am sorry that I am late. I had to grab my text book from my locker."
"Very well Miss Henley, take your seat." The woman's icy demeanor never changed. She just walked to the head of the classroom and began to write on the black board. "As I understand, you ladies have been through several substitute teachers and as a result, are behind on your studies. To address this, I have taken the liberty of throwing out the old course syllabus. From now on, we will be going off a more college-style syllabus."
As the girls heard this a few of them groaned. They knew that this woman wasn't one to play with. She was a real teacher. Across the hall a similar conversation was being held with similar results. By the end of the third period classes, word had spread throughout the school. The new teachers are hardcore and won't take any crap from a student. Even over at Savannah River Military Academy, word was spreading. The new teachers were no one to play with.
Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington DC, 1030:
Shawna stood just outside of the Customs' area waiting patiently. She wasn't surprised to learn that Kasey and Kristine had been tasked to go in undercover as students. The one thing she couldn't figure out was why Madison picked up four more suits with lingerie and shoes for Samantha and Annette. After all, they should have more of those than she did, at least Annette should.
She looked up and smiled as her charges reached the Customs officers. She knew that they had been briefed on what to do and hoped they followed instructions. Everything was going to plan, until one of the officers reached for Kristine's attaché case. Naturally Kristine stepped back with the case.
"Senor, this is a Diplomatic Case." She told him.
"Yeah right, little girl. Now hand it over." He said reaching for it
Anna stepped forward and grabbed the man's hand. "That case is a Diplomatic attaché case for Spain, sir. If you make the mistake of opening that case you will be in violation of the Vienna Convention, articles 24, 27 and 34. These children have Diplomatic Immunity as such I suggest you leave them alone." The fire in Anna's voice was hotter than lava.
"Just who the hell are you?" the Customs officer demanded.
Anna pulled out the wallet that Kimberly had handed her back on Ram's Rock Island. "I, sir, am their Governess and bodyguard. You put your hands on one of them I can legally cut your balls off. Understand?"
"Would someone here care to explain WHY my Customs' area is being upset?!" called out a Shift Supervisor for the Customs Agency.
"This man." the scorn dripped from Kristine's lips as acid "dare to put his hands on my person, and attempted to take my case." Kristine let her displeasure color her voice and flare her Castilian accent.
"Excuse me young lady, but do you have proof of Diplomatic Immunity?" The Supervisor asked.
Kristine pulled out her diplomatic passport and show the Supervisor. "Si Senor. I had already shown it. Satsfactorio, no?"
"Very much so young lady, muchos gracias. Sorry for the inconvenience. The officer will be disciplined. Please, collect your bags and be on your way, with our apologies, ladies." The Supervisor waved the three through after stamping their passports quickly.
Shawna smiled as Anna, Kasey, and Kristine stepped up to her. "Mrs. Garcia, it is a pleasure to see you again. I take that your flight went without problems?"
"Hello again Agent Denton. It has been a while. As for the flight it was very relaxing. Allow me to introduce my charges. This young lady is Justinian Marie Carmen." Anna said with her hand on Kasey's left shoulder. "And this sweet girl is Angeles Susan Carmen."
"My, oh my, Anna you have moved up in the world. The last I heard, you were working for that family in Sicily. Have you take to selling yourself to the highest bidder?" Shawna joked.
"OH nothing as vulgar as that, Sara. I was asked by a friend of the family to escort these lovely young ladies and watch over them while they are in school here in the States. It is, however, nice to be meet by a friendly face." Anna played up the banter like a seasoned pro. Then again she was a season professional. She had to be working for the DeMarco family.
Turning to face the two teens Shawna greeted them. "Hola señoritas. Esta es la primera vez a los Estados Unidos?" Hello young ladies. Is this your first time to the United States?
Kasey quickly answered playing up the Castilian accent. "Hola Señora. Sí esta es nuestra primera vez a los Estados Unidos." Hello ma'am. Yes, this is our first time to the United States.
"Espero que las señoras ha estado estudiando en inglés." I do hope you ladies have been studying up on English. Shawna smiled and switched over to English. "You will need it to be able to talk with your new friends and you may call me Sara."
"Yes ma'am, Sara. We've been working very hard on our English studies." Kasey said with a smile.
"Yes ma'am we have even set aside our French and German studies to be better prepared for going to school here. Is it true that this school will teach us to ride horses?" Kristine got in on the act as they walked through the airport to the baggage claim area.
"I must say girls, with the exception of the accent, I would guess that you were born and raised in the Pacific Southwest. Oh it is not as heavy as some that I have heard, but it is MOST definitely Castilian." Shawna looked over to see their bags coming out of the scanners. "Ah! Here comes your luggage now ladies. Shall we collect them and be on our way?"
She waved over a porter and he pulled the bags indicated. As she led them out she whispered. "The limo is wired for audio and video. Stay on-mission."
Once outside and in the limo the three relaxed for a few moments. The girls kept their Castilian accent throughout the drive to the Spanish Embassy. Shawna smiled to herself as the teens never once let themselves fall out of character. Even while inside the Embassy, they played the part of true Castilian Ladies of culture. When the Embassy Guards asked to see their papers both girls had them ready and handed them over in an arrogant manner, as if the guards were beneath them.
Shawna couldn’t have been prouder of the teens. The two of them were acting as professional operators. Even Lyssa would be proud of her protégée’s. The teens will make their family and teachers proud. Shawna could see the two girls moving beyond the bounds of your normal operators or law enforcement investigators. They would have a place on the world stage in the fight against criminal organizations. It would be the only place big enough for these young operators.
After an hour at the Embassy the four ladies were taken to the private airfield, to Shawna's private Learjet. After a short one hour hop to Columbia Regional Airport the group was meet by a limo driver holding a sign with their names. It took another two hours for the driver to deliver them to Akin Equestrian Girls School. They were a little perplexed by entering through the rear gate of the school grounds. When Shawna went to question the driver about this he was already supplying them with a reason.
"Sorry for coming through the back door ladies, but this is for your own safety. This way, we avoid the protesters and press vultures out by the main gate." The driver had a quirky smile on his face.
"About those protesters driver, what is it they are protesting?" Anna asked, maintaining her own accent.
"That ma'am is the sixty four dollar question. You got everything from the Right Wingnuts screaming about the morals of the students being put in danger, to the Left Wing fruitcakes going on about students being used as candidates for some ultra-secret spy training program. And everything in between. Personally, I think it's just the Henley’s and Gilroy’s up to their usual tricks." He explained.
"Gracias Señor. Agradecemos vas a todo este problema para nosotros." Thank you sir. We are appreciative you going to all this trouble for us. Kristine had no sooner finished thanking the driver than Kasey elbowed her. "Sorry sir, I forget sometimes. Thank you for going to all this trouble for us." Kristine let her accent be just a tad heavier than normal.
"Por favor perdóneme hermana Señor. She has problems, at times, remembering to speak English." Kasey said from her seat.
Steve just chuckled. "Young lady if remembering to speak proper English is a problem for her, the two of you will do just fine in the United States."
"Sir. Please do not encourage the Colonel's granddaughter's bad habits. They are proper Ladies, from a noble household." Anna told the driver which got the two teens giggling. "Justinian, Angeles, you know better. Now behave the way your grandpapa would expect of you."
"Yes Governess Anna." Both girls dropped their eyes and starred at their hands as they gave their Governess a very contrite reply. Steve wanted to chuckle at the two teens in back along with the two other adults but kept his professionalism. All three knew that the teens were nowhere near being contrite that it was all just an act. Just like teens everywhere, the two in his backseat had a mischief streak. Shawna sneaked them both a wink in approval of their antics.
As he pulled around to the front of the main office building they saw a gathering of teenage girls. Anna looked down at her watch. "It seems that we have arrived in time for the afternoon break. OH well, no help for it now. Come along girls, don't doddle."
Anna took charge and led the two teens inside. "Sara, please wait here until I return. It has been so long that I would like to spend time catching up with you. I just need to get the girls registered and we can go for dinner."
Shawna smiled. "Oh I'll be going inside as well. There a matter between the Austrian Embassy and a certain would-be journalist that is to be addressed."
"I see. Come along girls don't doddle, we have much to get done." Anna prompted.
The teens quickly followed behind Anna and Shawna. As they walked behind the women, Kasey and Kristine scanned the faces of the girls in the hallways. If either teen saw someone that fit their possible profile for the bullies, they would a hand signal to alert the other. It was this simple act that allowed Kristine to spot the highest possible target group. Nine teenage girls stood in front of a set of lockers.
With a simple hand signal that Kasey and she had practiced while racing their buggies, Kristine identified the girls.
"Are you sure about them Angeles?" Kasey asked Kristine in Russian.
"Yes sister, they are the Alpha bitches for sure and most likely, our bullies." Both girls stayed with Russian until they would be sure of those around them. It was something they had talked about during the flight down from D.C. They knew that some Americans knew Spanish and French as they were the most abundantly taught.
As they passed the girls they both heard the whispers.
"Oh just great, another pair of Slavic Slags."
"Why can those Irenas just keep their sluts at home?"
"Two more eastern sluts for the whore house."
"Excuse me, but we are not Russian. My sister and I are Castilian Spaniards. Never assume otherwise." Kasey had gotten right in the face of the girl who had been the most vocal and stressed her accent.
Kristine was not about to be out done by her older sister and faced off against the other Queen Bee. "If I were you young lady I would learn the difference, quickly. We are not Mexican or South American. Nor from any of the Spanish speaking west. I would do it before you get your skinny, underfed, bleached-blonde behind handed to you on; a silver platter with our family crest."
The girls' accent was perfect and attitude, spot on. They stylishly turned on their heels and caught up with Anna.
No sooner had they caught up to their Guardian than Anna asked them in Italian. "What were you two doing back there girls?"
"Kicking over the hornets' nest Miss Anna. The best way to hunt down a bully, is to confront the Alpha bitches first thing. We are now on their radar. They'll have to come at us hard and heavy. If they don't, the other girls will call them on their bullshit." Kasey answered in Italian.
"We are a new threat to their pecking order Miss Anna. If they don't face us down and try to put us in our place, they lose all credibility. It also gives us an opening to find out who is behind the bullies." Kristine told their Guardian. "We made ourselves the bullies' newest targets."
Shawna smiled and said in Italian. "Insurgency 101. The fastest way to get a regional Warlord's attention; mark-up or take out his bagman. Do it first and in view of the indigenous personnel. The tax collector is usually the propaganda officer. They've been learning their lessons well."
"So I see." Anna really did see and understand. "You have decided to be the bait on the end of the hook. Just remember one thing girls. Wiggle, but don't get bit."
Shawna leaned closer. "This is straight out of the Special Forces handbook; Force Multiplication. Impress the locals and they become your assets against the hostile force. By solving their immediate problem, they will in turn help you solve your problem."
"Sounds like that book; How to win friends and influence people." Anna whispered back.
Shawna smiled. "This way is much better and fun. It includes high explosives."
"Murphy's Law of Combat: Odd objects draw fire." Kristine smiled.
Kasey smiled. "We will be very odd. In fact, we will become popular."
To emphasize the point, they both smiled charmingly at a girl so shy looking, she might have jumped away as they spoke directly to her. "Hola."
"Where do we find the Headmistress?" Kasey asked in her heavy accent.
"Th-that way." The girl replied meekly.
"Gracias." Kristine smiled. "Thank you."
A moment later they found the door and walked inside. A woman was speaking with a secretary.
Shawna spoke up. "Where might we find Headmistress Boatwright?"
"That would be me, Miss?" Scarlet replied walking over.
"Agent Denton. State Department." Shawna said and showed her credentials. "Mrs. Garcia I'll only be a moment."
"By all means Sara." Anna said.
"Oh my. You're here about the shooting, aren't you?" Scarlet asked.
"I am." Shawna stated. "The Austrian government will not pursue the academy about this. They understand the incident was none of your doing. Herr Kohl asks that you not stress yourself and simply continue to provide the same fine education Uta has been enjoying here. She will NOT be removed from your Academy."
Scarlet sighed with relief. "Thank you! Uta loves it here and has been worried her father would send her back to Vienna."
"Not at all. She may stay until she graduates, save for holidays. The individual that caused this however, I will be visiting him later and it will not be so pleasant. Good day Headmistress." Shawna said then waved Anna and the girls forward. "Mrs. Garcia. Headmistress Boatwright, This is Mrs. Garcia. She is the Governess for Colonel Carmen's granddaughters. Colonel Carmen is a military attaché with the Spanish Embassy, specifically he is their NATO attaché."
"I see. Hello Mrs. Garcia. Ladies. Welcome to Akin Equestrian Girls' School." Scarlet greeted them.
"This is where I leave you. Have fun." Shawna said to the girls then nodded to Anna and went out, closing the door behind her.
Two girls that scurried away had been noticed by both girls and Shawna, who pretended to ignore them. Word would spread very fast now. Just as the girls had planned.
to be continued
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