Jayden Roberts stumbles across something big while clearing out the spare room in the house he shares with his brother. What he unearths makes him question both his deceased step-dad, and older brother. What is HYDRA doing in England, and are SHIELD really the good guys? How can Jayden tell his friends from his enemies in a world of international espionage?


3. Day 25 - What are friends for?

Date:23rd February 2015

Location: London, England


A lot can be achieved in four days. Jayden had learnt that through hard work and dedication. Normally, he wouldn't put his full attention and effort into something unless it was a game, or a girl. But something about this had caught his imagination, sparked his penchant for meddling in other people's business.

He'd read the files. Over and over.

Those six letters rang in his head, over and over


Until Jay realised where he'd seen the name before.

America wasn't so far away that they hadn't heard about New York. Aliens. Pretty big news. Three years ago, Jay had looked up to the so-called Avengers as idols. He supposed every kid wants to be a superhero at some point. When London was attacked, he'd learnt a valuable lesson. Superheroes only exist to fight the bad guys. And when they do, people get hurt. Then 2014 rolled along, and with it, the uncovering of S.H.I.E.L.D. By then, Jay had grown up. He could see the damage these people were doing to America, to the world. To his home.

He'd almost forgotten ever hearing the name. It was all so unreal, and (mostly) out of reach. Over the last few days, he had gone through every single piece of media coverage, newspaper stories, even internet conspiracy theories on S.H.I.E.L.D. The laptop, however, had been a dead end. Encrypted with several layers of military grade codes, Jayden had been unable to gain access to anything. Even with his skills in computer games, he was not an experienced hacker.

One name kept cropping up in his research - The Rising Tide. Apparently, they were a group hacktivists, whatever that was, dedicated to exposing S.H.I.E.L.D. Jay had eagerly gone after this little titbit, but their website now held only one message:

It was all very exciting - that other people knew of the existence of S.H.I.E.L.D - but extremely irritating that he could find very little actual fact. What did it mean, onto us? What was this secretive organisation capable of?

Unfortunately, it was now Monday, and Kane had forced Jay to go to school, despite his pleading.

“You are my responsibility, Jay, and as such, you will go to school. I’m not having social services take you away because you’re too stubborn for your own good.”

And so here he was, sat in maths, unable to concentrate on the trigonometric equations he was meant to be solving. His pen doodled across the page, and he found himself writing a list of what he did know.


 - Stands for Strategic  Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division

 - Very secretive

 - Mainly American,  although they have bases all over the world, including, apparently, London

 - John worked for them - had worked :(

 - He was killed in a plane crash

 - It was NOT  an accident (meaning he was killed in action, and we’ve been lied to)

 - He was working on something called Operation DeathNote, which I know nothing -


“Mr Roberts, are you paying attention?”

Uh oh. Mr Farren just didn’t get angry, so when he snapped at you, you knew you were in trouble. Jayden should have known better than to daydream in his class.

“Well, Jayden? What is more important than your future that you had to ignore my lesson?”

He was very fond of talking about their futures, and how if you didn’t pass A Level, you would fail at life. Well, that’s what it felt like.

“Nothing, sir. I’m just tired. Sorry, sir.” As excuses go, that was not one of his better ones, but he’d never been good at thinking on the spot.

Mr Farren stalked towards him, hand outstretched. “If it’s not important, you won’t mind me taking a look.”

Jayden could not let him see his list. He stammered, trying to come up with a plausible excuse. Fortunately, the bell rang just as Mr Farren reached his desk. He started shoving his books into his bag as quickly as possible, hiding the incriminating evidence as he did so.

Mr Farren looked annoyed. “Very well, Jayden. Consider this a warning, as you’re not normally like this. Class dismissed.”

Not surprisingly, Jayden was straight out of the classroom.  He headed towards the lunch hall, still half in the almost-fictional world of S.H.I.E.L.D. Espionage, spies, agents, missions  - it was like something out of James Bond. Except this was very real. And very dangerous, if his step-dad’s death –murder – was anything to go by. For a second, his steps faltered.

Did he really want to get involved in this?

Jay contemplated the idea of forgetting what he’d discovered, going back to a normal life, never finding out the whole truth. He couldn’t comprehend it.

 No. He’d come this far – he had to continue. Vaguely, he heard his name, and the exasperated tone snapped him out of his musings.

“Jay! Jay! Jayden Roberts! Wait up, you moron.” He turned to see his fiery friend, Ashley, burning a path through the crowd of students. He chuckled.

She didn’t stop her determined charge through the corridor when she reached him, just caught hold of his arm and dragged him along with her.

“I don’t know what you think is funny, mister.” She glared at him. “I’ve got important news that you need to hear.”

“Slow down, Ash! Sorry, I was miles away,” he replied, trying to avoid that glare. Ashley was well known for her death-stares and had been known to bring men to tears.

Ash towed him towards the table where Damien was already sat, gangly body sprawled across two chairs.

"Hey, Damien," Jay started, sitting down opposite him.  "How was - "

"Damien." Ash nodded to the other boy, before continuing at full speed. "You know a had that 'friend' that used to hack into the school network?" She didn't wait for an answer, putting her hands on the table like a politician making a speech. "Well, he got arrested the other day under suspicious circumstances. As in the police wouldn't say why they were arresting him." She looked at them eagerly, obviously expecting a reaction. Damien looked confused, and Jay just blank.

He held out a hand to stop her next tirade. "Why are you telling us this?"

Ash sighed. "Because, dumbass, I think he'd hacked into some kind of secret government, M.I 6 thing and they didn't want anyone to know about it. Tell me that's not exciting!"

Damien put his hand on top of hers, deadly serious and all. "Ash, I'm sorry to burst this bubble of conspiracy theories you seem to be in, but things like that don't just happen. Anyway - Oh will you please just sit down! You're making me anxious." He pulled her down next to him.

"God, Damien, just because you don't believe anything unless you've seen it yourself." Ash continued teasing him, but Jay had stopped listening. A hacker. That's what he needed! If The Rising Tide was out of action, maybe somebody else could help him. He needed to know what was in that laptop.

" - date a hippo if it had a boobs," countered Ash, ending a conversation Jay was quite glad he hadn't heard.

"What happened to this friend of yours? The one who got arrested? " he asked, stopping Damien from uttering what Jay was sure would have been an inappropriate come-back of some sorts.

Ash turned to him. "Last I heard, he'd been released on bail, due to lack of evidence or something. Why?"

"Just sounds an interesting guy. What's his name? Know where I could find him?" Jay knew he sounded weird, but he could not miss this chance. The Classified file had given no specific details on the nature of Operation DeathNote, although it sounded ominous enough. Jay had done his research and come to the conclusion that someone like Japanese Anime. Great, now he had something to go on in his search for these people. Sarcasm aside, if he could get into the laptop, who knows what he could find out?

Ash looked at him, clearly puzzled. "Again, why?" Jay started to formulate a response but she waved him away. "Actually, I don't really care. It's your life, and if you want to find other geeky guys to do...geeky...stuff with, then that's fine by me." She said it straight faced, but he could hear the smirk in her voice.

"He's online most of the time. A chat room for hackers and computer nerds. It's called WireClub, and I believe his username is The Eye. His real name is Kyle. Don't know surname. I'm warning you - if you go in there, you may never come out again. It's the centre of Geek Town. You'll be alright, though, Blackbird."

Jay groaned. "You know I hate it when you call me that. Thanks, anyway. Don't worry, I'm not going to do anything stupid," in response to his friends' twin looks of doubt. I hope, he added in his head. God knows what he would find, if he did manage to find this person, and if he managed to decrypt it. Too many if's for his liking.

He managed to get through the rest of the day, though how was a mystery. His body was filled with a nervous energy and he couldn't keep still. He couldn't even use the school computers, as he had no free periods on a Monday afternoon. Anyway, the chat room would probably have been blocked. Better to keep this investigation private, he thought. When the bell finally rang at the end of the day, he was the first one on the bus. Usually, he'd wait for Ashley and Damien, although they didn't get his bus, but today he just could not wait.

Kane wasn't back when he opened the door. This was not unusual, as he worked odd hours, and Jay was kind of glad, as it meant his brother wouldn't come snooping into his room. Jay had never been a good liar and Kane would know that something was up. This was Jay's thing - he wanted to figure it out on his own. His brother would probably make him stop his detective work, which was not going to happen anytime soon.

His own laptop was where he'd left it in his room. As he had now cleared most of the spare room going through boxes to check if there was anything else on S.H.I.E.L.D (there hadn't been), he went in there. He logged on and sat down to contact this Kyle person, electric eels of excitement and nervousness dancing in his stomach.

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