Operation Naked Truth novel: Procedure Beige

In that time, when the world was watching with tension and captivated, Denise was lying in her bed in that highly classified military Facility, trying to sleep. Of course, that the whole transmission was pre-recorded and computer generated. It was an unprecedented PSYOP, after all.

But her part was yet not finished. After the mission, she will talk with many politicians and businessmen of the world, to negotiate a good stance for the Corporation, so the company will grow and accept many contributions and gratitudes, to become the most powerful Corporation of the world – this was the plan. And the state will get stronger too…

She was lying in bed, and watched the concrete ceiling above her. Suddenly, a thought about her ex-boyfriend came, and she felt strong discomfort and wave of sadness and shame. But she allowed that, to change her thoughts from all that PSYOP professional charade and Corporation, it occupied her mind for too long already.

What happened that time? Their mutual relationship seemed so fine, until that young female fashion blogger approached him, asked him to make a few professional photos for her… and in the end, a new couple emerged, and he left Denise, as he was fully caught into the nets of that another woman!

It was a present trend, that this class of female fashion bloggers had a common custom to have a boyfriend, who was their closest collaborator, colleague and photographer in one person. These couples spent much time together, both working and romancing, so the connection was extremely deep…

But it was good, because thinking of all that, Denise was finally asleep and losing her consciousness, ready for the well deserved sleep…

It was a minute after midnight, and she was leaving this world, to enjoy her rest… but suddenly, something strange came into her mind, a sound of distant gunfire…

She thought, that this is just a memory of that recorded historical session, but she opened her eyes and lifted her head from the pillow anyway, distracted.

She was awoken immediately. It was not a dream! There was some real shooting on the surface, above her!

So it happened! It was always a possibility, that a foreign power will try anything to get their hands on the Device!

Denise got out of the bed, and her moves became swift. They had precise emergency procedures prepared. So she took a combat military uniform from the wardrobe, including all equipment.

Somebody knocked the door. A fully armed female Army captain entered into the room. “Wake up, girl. The war just begun! Get dressed. Procedure Beige is in effect!”

“I know,” Denise replied, and inserted a magazine into her assault rifle. She also painted few black parallel strips with charcoal on her face, to make an improvised camouflage, not to be recognized by the enemy as The Asset.

In the command center, on the floor up, there could be clearly heard vicious gunfire, automatic cannons, explosions of grenades and RPGs.

“Cannon turrets Five and Six are down,” the communications officer reported. “Multiple targets! They are everywhere around us! They use some EMP projectiles, to disrupt our automated defenses.”

“Call the artillery support immediately! We need to clear the northern tree line from the enemies!” the commander of the facility asked.

“Negative, sir! I hear only static. Our comms are completely cut off!”

Everybody in the room knew, that the enemy made sure they will not be able to use any support, and he will be able to force them to destroy The Device by self-destruction sequence.

“You all know the rules! As soon as a first intruder comes to fifty meters from The Facility, we have to launch the emergency procedures!”

“It’s your call, sir. The system is fully functional and ready. The charges are all online,” the comms officer said coldly. After all, it was the property of Corporation, not the Military!

“Send everybody upstairs, to man the defenses! The rest will prepare to abandon The Facility. You, Asset – you come with us!”

“As ordered, sir,” Denise acknowledged.

“What the hell did we think? That they will leave us alone with this toy?” the commander said angrily, and Denise agreed.

The enemy was already at the Facility entrance, blasting high-powered charges, to force the way inside the underground complex.

The rest of defenders activated self-destructing sequence, with the timer set to ten minutes, and quickly went through the long tunnels, to the emergency exit to the surface.

A sweet, calm, even sexy female voice suddenly vibrated through all corridors and rooms in The Facility through many loudspeakers. “Attention to all personnel! Attention! Procedure Beige was activated. This action cannot be revoked. Evacuate The Facility immediately! Status: T minus Ten and counting.”

“Check the situation upstairs, lieutenant!” the commander asked.

But the situation was bad – the enemy found out the location of the emergency exit somehow, and prepared an ambush there, as they could see on a camera outside.

And the enemies were already inside the bunker too. The exfiltrating team could already hear the distant shouts and commands in foreign language. But the floor with the Device was fully sealed, and the enemy still needed a time to breach it.

“We are trapped, people! And you all know what the Procedure Beige says: to prevent enemy from seizing The Device, under all conditions!”

In that moment, further professional career of Denise was strongly endangered…

“Or we could enter The Device, and escape!” Denise said suddenly.

“How do you mean that?” the commander wondered at such strange suggestion.

“The Device is ready. We can escape by activating it, and setting the time one day ago. The system allows that, in a case of such emergency. We still have several minutes before the blast!”

“So this all was not a complete charade, do you want to say?”

“Not completely. The Device is real, indeed. The Corporation just wanted to gain as much advantages as possible. So they manufactured this colorful tale!”

“Wait… but you mean a physical transmission, not virtual? It would mean, that we will alter the past, to prevent all this to happen? It would be against direct orders from the high command, not to interfere with the past events!”

“It’s our only choice now!” Denise insisted. “And let’s call this higher interest! Orders are one thing – the practice and the future of our country is another! Our mission, as the Military, is to preserve our state and its basic values using any means possible!

If we would just end here, wasted, we wouldn’t help to achieve this goal. Let’s do it – we will be judged in some other time. But we will fulfill our pledge to the homeland!”

“OK… let’s go!” the commander ordered without hesitation.

They returned to the hall, where the Device was built. It was an impressive invention. But even all that well trained soldiers were scared! It was never tested, to send a human being through the time displacement machine!

“Attention to all personnel,” the artificial female voices repeated. “Procedure Beige in in effect. Leave the building immediately. Use the emergency exit at corridor Seven. Status: T minus three and counting.”

“Who will go first?” the commander asked the group. Nobody wanted to enter the strange and scary Device!

“I will go!” Denise volunteered.

“No, not you! You know more than us, you always knew more! You can’t be trusted!” the commander denied such suggestion.

But Denise already entered the Device, and activated it from the inside. Nobody stopped her.

“I need the launch code, commander!” she shouted.

“No… It’s too risky… I am not allowed…”

“No time to hesitate, commander! Or we all will die just in a minute! Give me the code, now!”

“T minus two and counting,” the voice supported Denise.

“47…381.”

“OK. People, just push the code 47381 on the keyboard, and wait five seconds. Everything is automatic!” she instructed them instead of saying goodbye. “Hold this for me,” Denise handed over her rifle to the comms officer.

The Device started to glow, and the power input was increasing.

And then – she simply disappeared!

“Now you, lieutenant!” the commander ordered.

The comms officer entered inside, and pushed the proper buttons. But nothing happened! The Device either needed a time to recharge, or they were fooled by her.

Anyway, they realized this complication too late.

“T minus thirty seconds,” the artificial female voice changed to some maternal tone and slowed, predicting the end. “Thank you for using the services of The Corporation. Remember, we leave nobody behind. Your ultimate sacrifice in the name of higher interests won’t be forgotten. Now, find peace inside you, and accept God.”

All soldiers just stopped where they were, and sat on the floor conciliated, realizing, that the inevitable end is here.

“T minus ten seconds. He is remaining with you. He will guide you to the light. Follow Him without fear. Trust Him with all your heart. He loves you. You are His beloved child. All your sins are forgiven. Farewell,” the computer system said goodbye to all soldiers, alive and dead, who were sentenced to remain inside The Facility, never to see the daylight again. The thick concrete walls now became their tomb.

The blast came and erased everything, everybody…

Except Denise.

She was already at some other time, some other place…

How will she use this ultimate advantage?

Alan Svejk - alansvejk@alansvejk.com

alansvejk@alansvejk.com