Chapter 09: Below

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" it is," Drake said as they came to stand before the elevator.

They were alone now, just the three of them, as the others had headed off towards the garage. Trent still couldn't shake the idea that he was being watched, but it had become something of a background murmur at this point, so he let it simmer along the peripheral of his awareness. He looked at the others. Drake reached forward and hit the call button for the elevator. Trent let his eyes drift to Genevieve. There was no doubt that she was very disturbing. It wasn't just her short white hair or her glowing white eyes, or the fact that she was an assassin.

It was probably the fact that she was so small. He'd be surprised if she was more than five foot three and broke a hundred pounds. Trent wasn't used to such lethality coming in such a small, attractive package. She had a very nice body, pleasantly proportioned, her muscles well-defined. She was built like a swimmer or a dancer. He was considering whether or not to ask her to bed. As a rule, he didn't ask women he thought he might break on accident, and he definitely didn't ask known assassins to bed. It was just too dangerous.

But Genevieve...

Even her name was sexy.

The elevator came to a halt in its metal nest, the doors humming open to reveal a blank, well lit, metal interior. Trent allowed Genevieve to go ahead of him, watching her tight ass that was still visible because of the armor she'd chosen to wear. It was an actual suit, but it seemed to almost be a second skin, clinging to every curve.

"You coming?" Drake asked.

"Yup," Trent replied, smiling as he stepped in.

He noticed he was in a considerably better mood since taking the job. No more existential horror, no more meltdown. He felt certain, like he was doing exactly the right thing that he needed to be doing. The doors closed, Drake hit the down button and they began their descent. Trent spent a moment checking his gear, his rifle, his pistol, his suit. Now that he was actually feeling good about his life, he didn't want it all to come to an end because of something stupid. If he wanted to keep doing good in the galaxy, he'd have to stay alive.

Trent satisfied himself that his gear was in good working order and tucked his rifle into his shoulder as the elevator came to a halt. The trio moved to either side of the lift, hidden from view, and the doors parted and slid open.

Nothing happened.

Trent strained his ears against the silence, picking up only the soft hum of power and the quiet respiration of oxygen. Beyond that, nothing. He poked his head out and found himself staring down a short, well lit tunnel.

"Guess I'll go first," he said.

Trent exited the lift and stepped into the tunnel. It was a barren, rock passageway, the walls, floor, and ceiling smooth and reinforced. Trent led the way, Drake and Genevieve backing him up. He noted that he could only hear one set of footsteps and made a mental note to try and get her to tell him how she moved so silently.

The tunnel came to an end. There was no door, no frame, just a hole that led into an even bigger tunnel going in the opposite direction. To the right, it extended for a bit, to the left, it terminated in a flat rock wall. Trent took in the tunnel, searching for threats. It ended in a divider made of metal, likely meant to segment the passageway for defensive purposes so that if anyone came down looking for a fight, they wouldn't have an entirely straight shot to their destination. There were a few stacks of crates along the walls and a single derelict forklift.

No one for company, though. Trent kept his rifle up, moving down the length of the rock tunnel, checking behind the stacks of crates and the forklift while the others watched his back. Everything looked clean and smooth, no bullet holes, no burn marks, no blood or bodies or spent shell casings. If anything had happened, it evidently hadn't reached this far. The trio made it up to the first divider. There were no windows. It was just a solid metal wall with a large, sliding door in the middle that would disappear up into the ceiling when opened. Trent imagined them moving cargo and personnel through here.

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