The Hatchmen

Eight years has passed by since Albina Ratownik has escaped from the Underground Hospital Prison of Dr. Smok. No one knows what happened to him but Albina is sure that he is dead because she saw his death before her very eyes. She has been adopted by a doctor who is a good man and she is survived her depression and PTSD. Now Albina is a police officer who hunts criminals but one day, everything goes downhill. Four teenagers escape a train wreck but this train wreck was suspicious and abnormal. When the train crashed, no bodies were found and the four teenagers claim that two of their siblings and the rest of the passengers have been kidnapped by terrorists. They also mention someone by the name of Dr. Smok. Is Dr. Smok really alive out there, with terrorists, trying to cause more harm to people? Or are these teenagers lying and are they part of a conspiracy? It's up to Albina to decide.

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16. Revelation

Using his clever wits, Jiling Miyu stealthily snuck past all the security and into the computer room. Luckily, for Miyu, all the police officers were at a meeting and the rest were watching the Hatchmen so the computer room was empty…for now. He stepped into the room and picked a random computer. He pressed the power button and waited as the computer loaded. Miyu looked around the room as he sat on the chair. He jolted and goose bumps popped up from his arms and neck at the slightest sound in the room.

            Suddenly, the computer played a start-up fanfare which made the man jump and fall backwards. His heart bumped up to his throat and fear surged through his veins. He tuned out the thumping of his pulses and listened carefully for any sound of footsteps. There were none. Miyu waited another minute and again no footsteps were heard. He exhaled a breath of relief, put the chair back up, and turned off the speaker completely. As he sat down on the chair, he examined the computer and its equipment: this computer was a dinosaur!

            “Hmm…usually old computers can be somewhat slow, so I will have to wait at least five minutes for it to warm up so that it won’t freeze as I execute Dr. Smok’s orders.” he murmured to himself in Chinese.

            As he waited for the brief interval to pass, he slowly and cautiously walked around the room to check for any booby traps or anything suspicious but he found nothing. Strangely, there wasn’t even a security camera in the room! If there was one then Miyu had finally slipped up on a tiny detail for the first time in a while. If there wasn’t one because the officers thought that no one would escape the police’s grasp, then they were all downright stupid.

            The man realized that more than four minutes had now passed the interval so he quickly sat on the chair and looked at the screen that requested the username and password of the computer. As he cursed under his breath, he took off his fedora and wiped the sweat off his forehead.

            “I know how I will get past you,” murmured Miyu.

            He moved the cursor to the shutdown options menu in the corner of the blue screen. He clicked the restart option and waited as the computer turned off. When the computer turned back on, he repeatedly kept pressing the “F8” button on the keyboard. Then, the screen turned black and listed a variety of options; Miyu then chose the “safe mode” options and immediately typed “net users” in the command prompt. The black screen then briskly typed a list of usernames in white letters; Miyu chose a username, renamed it and changed the password.  

            When he clicked the enter button, a dialog box appeared informing him that his username and password had been changed. He giggled with glee and waited for the computer to start; when it did, he waited another five minute interval and explored the depths of the computer files. There seemed to be thousands of files in the computer which was most likely the cause of the sluggish speed of the computer. He carefully looked around for the file that contained information about Smok, his organizations, and his plans but it took for what seemed like a long time.  

            When he finally reached the computer files that he wanted, he skimmed through it. Knowing that these were the files he was looking for, he selected all the files by clicking one file and pressed the “Ctrl” button together with the “A” button. Once all the files were selected, he pressed the “delete”. Poof! All the files disappeared in an instant. He then erased the files from the recycle bin as well as from the back-up. He just needed to delete the files from the hard drive and all the files would be gone for good –

            “Freeze!” shouted a woman’s voice.

            Miyu looked up and he put his hands up in the air and stood up. The woman who ordered him to freeze was holding a pistol aimed for him. She was an albino, had a policewoman’s uniform, and bore a pink scar running down her face. She was none other than Albina Ratownik. She was surprised but angry at the same time. She stepped closer to him without releasing her aim.

            “What are you doing here?” she demanded.

            “Oh you know…” he said as he put his hands down and stepped closer to her.

            “Put your hands back up in the air!” she ordered trying not to reveal the fear in her voice but in vain. He stepped even closer to her while she still aimed her pistol at him. The pistol was now touching his forehead but Miyu just smiled. His attractive face showing no fear.       

            “Go ahead, just do it” he invited “and when you do, answer me this one question: ‘Is it easy to kill?’ ”

            Albina Ratownik tightened the grip of her finger on the trigger and looked at him straight in the eyes. She gulped and exhaled a deep breath.

*****

            The three cousins were sitting with Romano in the hallway where the Hatchmen had to wait to be interrogated. The police officers found out that Akiyama had been battered and the spectators that were watching from a two-way mirror were locked in the room. They were released and Akiyama dismissed the nurse, returning to his job. Albina Ratownik was sent to look for Jiling Miyu despite Chief Kovalenko’s objections.

            As the cousins talked with Romano, they comforted him while he vented his emotions to them. Romano thanked them gratefully for company and he asked questions about their life. Jacek and Filipina both expressed how worried they were about their siblings, Lilka and Brunon who were taken away from them. They though had different emotional pains they exchanged them and shared each other’s burden. They were so alike but yet so different.

            “By any chance did you see our sibling Lilka and Brunon with you anywhere?” Jacek asked Romano.

            “How do they look like?” Romano asked him.

            “Well,” answered Jacek “Lilka is slightly taller than Antoni is, she has dirty blond hair, brown eyes, and is a bit…sensitive. Brunon has dark brown hair, he is...taller than me even though he is younger than me. He has a trace of Polish accent and his voice is a bit deep.”

            “No, I’m really sorry,” apologized Romano “but I never seen anyone like that anywhere in the division.”

            “Oh no,” gulped Jacek as he stared down into the ground. His face then distorted into a solemn frown. He then looked to Filipina. “You don’t think…”

            “I don’t know,” she answered.

            They both looked at each other with expressions of worry. Antoni and Romano kept asking them what was wrong but they just left the room. Antoni followed them while Romano just stayed behind. He wasn’t mad and he didn’t mind because he knew the situation that they were in.

            “Remember when we saw Lilka and Brunon’s look-alikes around the city?”

            “Yeah…” answered Antoni

            “We have to ask Officer Ratownik, or the chubby, chip-loving cop, or Kovalenko or whoever if they had seen anyone like them anywhere.” said Jacek.

            “Do you have a picture of Lilka and Brunon?” asked Filipina.

            “Yeah – Oh crab!” exclaimed Jacek “I should have shown the pictures to Officer Ratownik earlier!”

            “Well, why didn’t you?” asked Filipina in a shocked and angry voice.

            “I don’t know!” he exclaimed “It just didn’t occur to me!”

            So the three of them went to the jail where they had always slept in their usual cell. They walked up to the cop that they had offended earlier and shrug his shoulders, waking him up from his nap. At first, he just snored louder and grumble but then Jacek slapped him across the face.      

            “Wake up!” he shouted.

            “Mom? I don’t wanna wake up….” he moaned as he fluttered his eyes open. When he saw the three cousins, his eyes bulged and he quickly sat up straight. “Oh it’s you all…where is the fourth one?”

            “She is in the hospital,” answered Jacek “listen, we need to ask you something.”

            “After you assault me – “

            “We did not assault you!”

            “Well after you insulted me and the Chief, you ask me for help?”

            “Listen you, have you seen these two people anywhere in the city or anywhere?” asked Jacek as he slammed two photographs, one of Lilka and another one of Brunon, down on the table. “Have you?”

            “”Um…” he stammered “What are you talking about? I haven’t seen them!”

            “Filipina, Jacek, what are you guys talking about?” asked a feminine familiar voice.

            “That voice…” said Jacek in shock.

            Filipina and Antoni had heard it too. They turned around and searched for the source of the voice. Filipina asked the voice to repeat what she said and she obeyed. The three of them went to the source of the voice. The cop had turned pale and he had ordered the three cousins to not follow that voice but they ignored him. Antoni quickly picked up the officers keys from the table and ran away. The voice was coming from one of the jail cells and when they saw who was in the jail cell, they were really surprised.

            “You guys are alive!” said Lilka. She was sitting across from Brunon in the jail cell. What was the most surprising was that both of them were unscathed!

            “I was about to say the same thing,” said Antoni as he turned the keys into the lock and opened the barred door.

            As soon as the door opened, Filipina and Jacek rushed into the jail cell and tightly embraced their siblings. A great wave of shock and relief fell upon the two cousins. Filipina had wept great streams of tears as she tightly held onto to her sister. Even Antoni was surprised; he was happy to know that his best friend (and cousin), Brunon, was safe. This was an emotional moment for all of them.

            “How…did you…when…what happened?!” Filipina, Antoni, and Jacek frantically asked Lilka and Brunon in gibberish.

            “I thought you guys were missing!” said Brunon “The police told us that they were looking everywhere for you but they couldn’t find you!”

            “What happened on the incident with the train?” asked Lilka “How did you all survive? And where’s Cecylja?”

            “All right everyone!” spoke Jacek as he cleared the clamor among them “We’re all going to get to explain everything that happened but first, Lilka and Brunon, what the hell happened after everyone was kidnapped by the terrorists, hijackers, or whatever they are called?”

            “So here’s what happened,” explained Brunon “Ater everyone was getting off the train, me and Lilka hid under some tables. After everyone got off the train, we got up and there were also some other people who hid under the tables. We all left the train together but we had to survive in the wilderness for a couple days until we reached Philadelphia.

            “The other people that were with us in the wilderness got mauled by a bear but we survived the bear attack. With the money, me and Lilka went to a restaurant and ate some food. We thought we saw you in the city but then we dismissed it as our own imagination. Finally, we went to the police station to tell what happened so then the police put us behind bars and they told us that they would do the best they could to find you all.”

            “Was there a police officer with white skin and blonde hair? Did you talk to her?” asked Filipina.

            “No, I don’t even know if they had a police officer like that.” answered Lilka.

            “So most of the police force except for Officer Ratownik knew this…” trailed off Jacek.

            “Officer Ratownik is nice; if she saw Lilka and Brunon she would have told us.” said Filipina.

            “True,” agreed Antoni.

            “So all this time,” said Jacek “you guys were here and the police didn’t even tell us! We had to join the police force because we wanted to find you guys…and because we were forced to.”

            “Tell us what happened!” said Brunon.

            So Antoni, Jacek, and Filipina all exchanged their stories from their points of view about what happened for the past couple weeks. They told Lilka and Brunon about their escape from the train, how they were falsely accused of setting off a bomb on the train, and all the reasons why they had to join the police force. Also, they told them about the training they had to go through and the missions they went on. They also talked about Officer Ratownik and Chief Kovalenko. While the cousins were shocked and amazed, they found it hard to believe and they kept asking if Officer Ratownik really did exist.

            “It’s all true!” confirmed Filipina.

            “Where’s Cecylja?” asked Lilka.

            “She’s at the hospital because Jiling Miyu broke her legs.” explained Jacek.

            Out of nowhere, there were shouts from many people. The angry mob had finally arrived. Chief Kovalenko, the chip-loving police officer, and other police officers stormed into the hallway with looks of disbelief on their face. Jacek stood up and left the cell and ordered the other four cousins to follow him. Filipina who was fuming like Jacek obeyed and moments later the three other cousins followed.

            “I told you to keep it a secret from Lew and the Pajdaks!” scolded Kovalenko.

            “I did!” exclaimed the chubby police officer “I told them not to go in there but they deliberately disobeyed my orders!”

            Jacek and Filipina ran towards the group of cops while the three other cousins calmly followed. Filipina slapped the chubby officer straight across the face while Jacek gave the police officer a punch straight up from the chin. They both hit the two officers uncontrollably and shouted curses at them.

            “How…slap!...could…slap!...you lie to us…slap!...like this?!” questioned Filipina as she repeatedly slapped the police officer across his cheeks.

            Then two officers separated Jacek and Filipina from Kovalenko and the other police officer. The two cousins wriggled and resisted but in vain; both of the police officers detaining them were too strong.

            “Why? I had to motivate you and make you carry out this job!” answered the chief as he was massaging his face. “I had to keep it a secret from you all or else you wouldn’t want to work for me.”

            “We’re done working for you all lying, cheating dastards!” bellowed Jacek “You lie to us and Filipina and Cecylja almost gotten killed by Miyu while me and Antoni were battling our lives to stop the Hatchmen! We’re leaving this instant!”

            Jacek took off his police badge and police cap and threw it to the ground; Filipina did the same in a fit of rage. The two best friends stormed away while Antoni, Lilka, and Brunon followed them. The three of them asked questions but the two cousins just ignored them. Chief Kovalenko and his gang followed the five cousins through the building. When the five of them were heading for the exit, the chief ran after them while his gang stayed behind.

            “You know if you quit now without my permission,” the chief warned “I will release your names to the media and your lives will be ruined! You will all be seen as suspects and no one will want to hire you or accept your admissions into college!”

            Jacek who opened the door halfway slowly closed it. He slowly turned around and walked straight to the Chief. He stared at him straight into the eyes with confidence and a sense of danger.

            “I don’t give a flying fudge.” he told him.

            He put up a rude hand gesture before leaving the building with his cousins. As the door slowly closed behind them, Kovalenko smiled to himself and rubbed his hands together. He exhaled a deep breath and chuckled.

            “My plan has been perfectly accomplished,” he murmured to himself in Ukrainian “they will all be thrown in prison once we use the evidence against them. They had finally found out that we had been keeping their siblings in secret; now that they are angry and that they left, I can have them thrown into prison. I always knew they were pieces of dirt! They act like they didn’t blow up the train but they did. They won’t take advantage of my Albina or hurt her anymore.”

            The officer then headed back to where he came from and looked for Albina Ratownik.

 

 

*****

            The five cousins entered the “Philadelphia City Hospital” through the rotating doors and asked the receptionist for an “Cecylja Pajdak”. Once they had answered all the questions that the receptionist asked of them, she gave them all the information to Cecylja’s room number. They had all took the elevator and entered Cecylja. Cecylja was covered with a white blanket and lying on the bed. The room looked clean but the cousins didn’t bother to touch anything in case they caught an infection. Cecylja’s father had once caught an infection from the hospital but was later treated for it.

            “Hey guys!” greeted Cecylja “Lilka! Brunon! You’re alive!”

            Lilka ran up to Cecylja and hugged her tightly. She smiled and asked many questions and Lilka answered them. She told her crippled cousin about her and Brunon’s misadventure. Of course, Cecylja was shocked but she felt relief at the same time. This moment was so emotional for her that she almost cried.

            “Cecylja,” announced Filipina “we’re not working with the police anymore.”

            “How?” asked Cecylja “Did they let us go?”

            “No, we quit.”

            “Are you being sarcastic? I don’t speak sarcasm.”

            “No, I mean we really quit.”

            “Then doesn’t that mean that…” trailed off Cecylja.

            “Yes, I know that we will get shunned and everything but we’re all together now.” Filipina explained “Jacek said that after you are allowed to leave the hospital, we’re going home. I wanna go home, Jacek wants to go home, we all wanna go home! Also, I just want all this madness to end and I don’t want to get involved with the Hatchmen, bombers, gangs, or anyone anymore!”

            “I agree.” said Cecylja. “I am going to have to pay for these hospital bills with my medical insurance. I am glad that I have insurance because then the money for the medical bills won’t have to come out of my pocket.”

            Suddenly, Chief Kovalenko dashed into the room. He was perspirating and he seemed to be panicking. He stuttered in gibberish but no words came out of his mouth. Antoni stepped toward Kovalenko and pushed him away. Jacek and Filipina followed but the chief begged to have the cousins listen to him. 

            “I told you we’re not coming back!” shouted Antoni. “Are you dumb?”

            “Listen,” said Kovalenko “I have to tell you that – “

            “Get out!” shouted Jacek “We’re not coming back!”

            “Listen!” shouted Kovalenko “I know this was all part of my plan to get you all into prison but Officer Albina Ratownik is gone! And so is Miyu! They disappeared!”

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