They were driven as close as possible to back door in the secure, underground car park. The door opened and a uniformed guard put his head in.
"We are going to move you inside now. Please move as quickly as possible."
"After you," Scott said pointedly. With all the enthusiasm of a condemned man, Clairbourne slowly climbed out of the car. Flanked by what looked like an entire army unit, he was frogmarched into the lobby. Scott followed, clearly wanting to keep close to Clairbourne. Hannah gestured to her birth mother to go next. Diana looked ashen as she fiddled nervously, rotating her wedding ring over and over.
"Thank you," Hannah said quietly.
Diana nodded, blinking away burgeoning tears. "Be careful," she said hoarsely.
"Ma'am." The soldier had returned and offered Diana his hand. She took it, gingerly and climbed out of the car.
For a brief moment Hannah was alone. For almost all of her life, she had never told lies or really ever had any need to lie. Recently however, she'd become quite adept at telling them. But was she really capable of successfully lying to the man who had turned deception and falsehood into an art form. She took a deep breath and climbed out of the car.
"This way, Miss Page."
Once inside, she was ushered into a large room on the left. Scott, Diana and Clairbourne were seated on different sides of the room, each talking to a member of the onsite medical staff. A young male nurse in a white coat was taking Diana's temperature and another was peering inside Scott's right ear with a small device.
"Hello, Miss Page. Might I just say how relieved we all are to have you back here, safe and sound?"
Hannah turned and saw Zeke coming towards her.
"It's good to see you again too. I have so..."
"This way," Zeke interrupted. "Please, take a seat." An older man in a white coat approached. "The medics are going to check you over as a precaution," Zeke continued. "Can we get you anything, a glass of water perhaps?"
The medic placed a thermometer beneath her tongue. Hannah nodded at the request for water. The thermometer removed, the nurse then checked her blood pressure. Hannah looked over towards Scott and found him staring back at her. He discreetly mouthed something to her, but she couldn't discern what he'd said. "Ouch!"
"Sorry, I am taking a small sample of your blood to check your sugar levels. Do you have any pain anywhere; are you injured at all?"
"No, I'm fine, honestly."
A couple more checks were carried out and she was deemed fit enough to undergo questioning. For a split second the four of them caught each other's eyes. The conspiratorial looks that passed between each of them differed. Diana looked terrified, but she gave Hannah a nod, placing the palm of her hand against her left breast. The gesture forged a lump in Hannah's throat. Clairbourne looked at Hannah, his eyes steely. His gaze moved to Tom and a moment passed between them that could only be described as menacing. Clairbourne had a decision to make. It wasn't about whom he felt true allegiance to, but to whom he feared the most. Back in the warehouse, it had been made very clear to him, that Briggs was the least of his worries. Hannah hoped, he would stay to true to his word, although she very much doubted it. Hannah caught Scott's eye again. For the second time he tried to mouth something to her but Zeke interrupted her view.
"This way please."
"Please, sit down, Hannah." The characterless room she had been taken to was just like any other room she had seen so far. Brightly lit with a pale, grey palette; in the centre stood a table and three chairs.
YOU ARE READING
The NumberedScience Fiction
Imagine the second you're born, a consultant removes you from your mother's grasp and runs a battery of genetic and physiological tests on you. Thirty minutes later they give you a score out of one hundred which denotes your level of perfection. If...