Spies must tell lies

'For years I'd been trying to piece together some form of family, and now I had a second chance. I wouldn't let it slip through my fingers.'

Charlotte Goode is fifteen.She speaks eighteen languages and knows how to fight. But she wants to know what really happened the night when her parents fought, and only one of them came out alive.

Spies must tell lies, but she is determined to find the truth.

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9. Perfect strangers

A while back I mentioned Abigail Cameron, and I guess I should explain what happened. How I found her. What we discovered. And how I haven't seen her since. 

I met her for the first time back in England. I remember vividly; it was a brisk morning in April. I was still living with the Townsend's, and I went into town to do some shopping. I caught a glimpse of a woman standing on the other side of the road, a crimson scarf knotted around her neck. A few seconds later, she had gone. I thought nothing of it - she was a stranger.

Five minutes later, she bumped into me on a different street. She wasn't wearing the scarf, but it was still cold. Her hair was no longer brown, but blonde. She was wearing blue contacts to cover the green glow of her eyes.

How did I know? Because she was still wearing the engraved gold ring on her thumb. 

It was so simple, but so many people would miss it. But I was trained, and that was when I became suspicious. Why was this woman in disguise? I tried to think of as many plausible reasons as I could for why someone would change their appearance so dramatically in such a short space of time, but I couldn't think of much.  I distinctly remember thinking she could have been working in a fancy dress shop, and wanted to try out some items in public to see how real they seemed.

I quickly put that idea aside. Bumping into someone twice is a coincidence, nothing more.

I kept walking.

I didn't see her for the rest of the day. I felt confident that I had lost a potential tail.

Over-confidence is a spy's worst enemy.

I sat at the bus stop, sipping at the remnants of my coffee from a plastic cup. I remember seeing the man in the knitted jumper checking his watch, the woman in a leather jacket stepping out from a taxi, the wind chasing leaves across the devious road, and the flickering of the street lights peppered along the path.

These were the last details I remembered before everything went black.

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