2. Chapter 2
It was 9:00 at night when the call came in.
Bradley was sitting quietly at his desk as he did every night. He rubbed his eyes, longing for a break. Even at his own house, there was still work to do. The telephone rang and Bradley nearly fell out of his chair. He was not used to people calling him this late. Now that he thought about it, he hadn't heard that phone ring in months. He cautiously lifted the speaker to his ear and tried to sound lively,
"This is Bradley." A standard greeting for anyone that might call at this hour.
"Bradley? It's Xzavier. I have a favor to ask you."
Bradley's stature slumped. His first call in months and it had to be Xzavier.
"Dad? What are you doing? Do you know what time it is?"
Xzavier made a sigh of relief on the other end. "Listen carefully and speak even more carefully. Do you have time to accompany me at an interview tomorrow at six?"
Bradley scrunched his nose. This didn't seem normal behavior for his dad at all. He stuttered for the right words. "Uh, yeah, dad, I can...yeah I can go with you. Can I ask what it's for, I mean, managing a computer company isn't exactly rocket science. What kind of interview is it?"
It was easy for Bradley to tell when his father was annoyed even when he couldn't see his face.
"I can't tell you much about it, but it's important." Xzavier paused for while. "Bradley, just trust me here, okay? I know what I'm doing."
Bradley sure hoped so. "Alright, I'll do it." He didn't know quite what to expect, but knowing his father, it should be interesting.
"Thanks Bradley, this means a lot to me." There was a click and he was gone.
Bradley mumbled to himself, "Sure, whatever dad." He decided it was time to get some shut eye.
Little did he know that whatever happened at the interview would change his life forever.
The next morning seemed to go by at lightning speed. Bradley was dressed, packed, and ready to go in a matter of minutes. He wasn't sure if it was eagerness or sheer nervousness about the events that would follow. Xzavier was at his house soon after five thirty. They didn't get a chance to talk in the car. There was a tense atmosphere like how it feels when both of you know you should apologize, but
can't fit the words in your mouth. Yes, it was like that, but Bradley was the one that was out of the loop. All Bradley knew was that they were driving for a very long time. Pretty soon, they were out of town and pretty much in the middle of nowhere. That's it, this was going too far! "Dad, where the hell are we going and what are you up to?" He tried to put on a mad-but-open-to-discussion face that was entirely false. He was scared out of his mind. "Alright, ask your questions and I'll try to answer them. I just had to wait until we were out of reach of radio signals." Bradley didn't know where to start. He had about a billion questions running through his mind all at once and they were each screaming to be asked first. He took a deep breath. Start small, he thought.
"Is this really an interview?"
"That part was half true. It is an interview, but not for me."
"What exactly am I being interviewed for?"
"Son, it's time I tell you the truth about me." Bradley was braced for the worst. "I don't work for a computer company, I'm the owner of The Elites. We are a top secret agency designed to protect the country from deadly threats, terrorists, and psychopaths." Xzavier glanced at Bradley. This was worse than the worst thing he had imagined. He felt like yelling at the top of his lungs. "You WHAT? Why? How am I involved in all of this? Please don't tell me I'm an adopted child of some criminal in Europe. Or that I'm a wanted man in seven countries!"
Xzavier was getting fed up with Bradley's reaction. "Calm down will you? You're not adopted and your not a criminal! I was going to recruit you to The Elites! I thought you would be old enough to understand that there is more to life than what happens right in front of you."
Bradley shut up quick. Perhaps he was right. Bradley had never done any traveling, but he heard about what happens in other places all of the time on the television. To him, it seemed like a fantasy, a dream, that it didn't concern him. But for the people involved, it was real. Bradley never knew his dad could be so philosophical sometimes.
"What do I have to do?" Was his final question. "You'll see in a minute. We're here."