Read Or Die Fan Fiction ❯ Read or Dare! ❯ Chapter 3

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Read or Dare! Field work

“I hate rain,” Shane noted as he, Yomiko and Nancy huddled in the large tent and the rain poured down outside, the setting sun hidden behind dark clouds and mist, “in fact, I think I hate it almost as much as I do fire.”

“Agreed,” Nancy scowled, her purple black hair nearly matching the skin tight leather bodysuit that she wore. They had eaten a short time ago and were readying for bed, though in Yomiko’s case that mostly involved reading a bit before laying down.

“Ah-choo!” Yomiko sneezed, then the brown haired young woman in the overcoat sniffled miserably, peering blearily at the book in her lap.

“Here,” Nancy reached over to hand Yomiko a tissue, “you wouldn’t want to drip anything on your book.”

“Ank ‘ou Nancy,” a completely stuffed and congested Yomiko answered.

‘Look on the bright side,’ Shane thought as he say cross legged on his sleeping bag, ‘at least I didn’t catch a cold.’ He paused, ‘Yet.’

“Do we have any more cold medicine?” Nancy asked him.

“Hold on a minute,” Shane put down the paperback he was reading and went through his nearby backpack. Several other paperbacks and bundles of paper fell out as he dug, but eventually he came up with a vial of pills, “Here we go.”

“Thanks,” Nancy took them then crawled over to where Yomiko sat miserably by the small lamp they were using.

Watching the normally tough, almost cold woman tending so gently to Yomiko seemed such a intimate thing that Shane turned away, focusing on his book instead. It had been a bit of a shock when, after a few months working with them, he realized that the two women were lovers but he thought he was coping pretty well.

“Lay down for a while,” he heard Nancy urge, “we’ll wake you when it’s time.”

“Thank ‘uo,” Yomiko murmured to Nancy drowsily then there was the sound of a soft kiss as she added, “Night.”

“Night, love,” Nancy whispered back. After a moment Nancy picked up the lamp, dimming it a bit before carrying it over to where Shane sat. Giving him a hard look she challenged, “Got something to say?”

Shane met her eyes mildly, his glasses gleaming, “Nothing at all, Miss Mukahari.”

Nancy met his gaze then relaxed a bit, “Sorry.”

“Had some problems?” Shane asked gently. He smiled slightly, “If it’s none of my business, just tell me.”

“It’s none of your business,” Nancy said crisply but with a bit of gentleness in her voice too. They sat there a moment then she asked, “And how are you coping? Becoming a agent must be a big change for you.”

“After Drake Anderson got done with training me,” Shane said to her dryly, “I think I was ready for anything.” There was a short pause and he added wryly, “At the very least, death now holds no fear for me.”

Nancy chuckled, “That bad?”

“I was a librarian,” Shane reminded her wryly as he mused, “before now, my greatest physical exertion was hauling piles of books around. Drake had me running around in full army gear and a fifty pound backpack.”

“Ouch,” Nancy smiled slightly.

Shane half smiled, “You too?”

“When I first joined,” Nancy agreed, “though it wasn’t Drake who was my drill master.” She looked thoughtful, “How’d you do?”

“I’m a poor shot,” Shane conceded, “but he seemed pleased with my progress in using paper, so hopefully that’ll make up for it.”
“Sounds good,” Nancy nodded, the woman clearly factoring in the information to her plans for tomorrow.

“So, we hit the castle tomorrow?” Shane asked. A wry smile, “And since when does anybody base themselves in a castle?”

“Dokusensha seems to have a flair for the dramatic,” Nancy noted with some amusement, “and yes, we will.”

“Huh,” Shane murmured.

Over the past two days they had traveled from Japan to China, traveled across a variety of land through bad weather, all to reach this location. Here, amid this mountainous province, was one of the research facilities for Dokusensha and possibly the source of the fire based attack that had devestated the British Library.

“So, what’s the plan?” Shane asked.

“Our mission brief is to get inside, get the information and get out,” Nancy said calmly, “beyond that, we improvise.”

“Comforting,” Shane sighed.

“The maps we’ve got should help us get in,” Nancy said calmly, “but the interior is probably completely different than listed. Once we’re inside, we’ll just have to improvise.”

“I guess I’m more used to organized events,” Shane conceded, uncomfortably fiddling with his paperback.

“You’ll manage,” Nancy flashed a smile.

Shane unwillingly yawned, then blushed, “Sorry.”

“It’s been a long day,” Nancy smiled. She reached over to dim the lamp a bit more, “Let’s hit the sack, we have to be up early in the morning.”

“Right,” Shane hesitated, “would you mind if I read a bit before....?”

“You’d lose track of time and not sleep,” Nancy said firmly as she made her way to Yomiko’s side, “lights out.”

“Had some experience with that?” Shane said as he carefully marked his page.

“Oh yeah,” Nancy nodded towards Yomiko as she carefully laid down. “Now,” she said seriously, “bed.”

“Yes ma’am,” Shane greed as he lay down, turning out the light.

Nancy snuggled in beside Yomiko in their shared sleeping bag, “And no reading using your flashlight, either.”

“Right,” Shane chuckled, turning away from the two women to look at the tent wall. ‘Tomorrow’s the big day,’ he silently mused, ‘I get to finally find out if all my training has paid off. Am I ready?’ He closed his eyes, ‘Guess there’s only one way to find out.’

To be continued....