Chapter 10

Written by: Gabrielle Burt

Osmosis.  A process by which molecules of a solvent tend to pass through a semipermeable membrane from a less concentrated solution into a more concentrated one.

The principle was quite simple really. I was fascinated by it and had developed an intellectual application for this principle.  Project IIO; Intelligence Infiltration by Osmosis. Known simply as ‘Osmosis’, with the potential to be the deadliest, most efficient, weapon of war, our world has ever seen. Or a miraculous cure for almost every disease, dysfunction or disability; physical or psychological, known to humanity.

“… for our countries to succeed?” I didn’t try to disguise the disbelief in my voice. “For our countries to succeed at what?” I was openly disparaging. “How exactly would that work?”

White hot fury flashed across his features, but when he spoke his voice was ice-cold.

“We could make a great team, Sarah. You and I. I like your spirit – and your intelligence. We would be rich beyond our wildest dreams.” He offered.

He knew I held all the cards. Any two without the third would be useless. The knowledge gave me Dutch courage. “It must be very reassuring having the Head of IB watching your back … changing your personal history to suit. Cleaning up your messes.” Silently I prayed he wouldn’t know I was guessing. I held my breath, then - bingo! His expression said it all. I struck again quickly. “I don’t suppose he mentioned he’s already offered the 2-IC to me?”

Mario’s face suffused with rage. “Cuff her!” he retrieved plastic Locktite wristbands from a belt-loop and handed them to his accomplice. “Your death will be slow and pleasurable – for me. And when we do catch up with your cowardly …”

Whatever he was about to say was lost as an explosion rocked the house, shattering all the windows along one side.

“THROW YOUR WEAPONS OUTSIDE WHERE WE CAN SEE THEM!” The disembodied voice was tinny through the loudhailer. “COME OUTSIDE WITH YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR.”

Mario swore under his breath as he ducked down beside a broken window. I didn’t move. What was the point? I had a clear view of the overgrown garden and the woods that bordered it. Uniformed soldiers wearing full balaclavas were everywhere. All heavily armed. A helicopter stood off to one side.

“What’ll we do, boss?” the gunman looked nervous.

“Do as they say. Throw the guns out. We’ll bargain with our hostage.” Mario grinned nastily as he pulled me roughly outside.

An officer stepped forward. “We have reason to suspect you are actively involved in espionage. Under the Homeland Security Act, you are all under arrest. I must caution you that anything you say will  be taken down and may be used as evidence against you.”

“No! Wait!” I found my voice. I could explain. Marty would help me explain.

It was then I saw him. Sitting in their helicopter. Tarpaulin-covered package on his knee.




Nice way to end this story which began on a beach and ended in a helicopter. Well done Gabrielle! Explaining what Osmosis was is a great way to start the chapter.