In the deepening darkness, hope can continue to bloom.
With the knowledge of the cybernetically enhanced, causing the populace to seek stronger, faster, and better warriors, a faction has determined they can use this opportunity to further their ends.
Senator Daniella Villede takes charge of a covert agency. Their mission is to investigate and close down those who'd overthrow the government. She's on the rise in her political career, but as conditions change, so does her role.
Jonah McDowell is just the man to head up the security force. Drawn to Daniella, he fights against his attraction. She's his superior, a senator, and beyond his reach.
When the unthinkable happens, Daniella turns to Jonah, but staying alive is just the first step.
Content Warning: this story contains sexual content and violence but also hope for a future where love conquers evil
Settling onto his bed, Jonah tugged off his shoes. "Oh, man!" His body ached, and his eyes were like sandpits—gritty and sore—while sleep was little more than a desperate dream from long ago.
Pondering his choices of stripping down or crawling on the bed fully clothed was replaced by 'who cares?' as he lay back. The soft, pillowy surface beneath him seductive as it lulled him.
Jonah closed his eyes, sighing and allowing his mind to wander. His brain began to settle, and sleep curled itself around him. Then the peal of his communicator split the air. He jerked back to wakefulness. For a second he considered ignoring it, but instead he burrowed his hand into the pocket of his pants and retrieved the tiny device.
"Where are you?" Michael asked.
He shot up in the bed, knowing that Michael, who was currently on his honeymoon, would have only contacted him in an exceptional circumstance. He opened his eyes as his mind whirred back into action. "What's up?"
"There was an attack at the senate. Daniella was hurt." Michael's terse wording increased the suddenly ragged cadence of his heart rate.
"What? I'm on my way."
Even as he shoved his feet into the shoes he'd just discarded, he dialed the senator's security team office. No answer. He tried again, and still there was no answer.
Fury peaked inside him, and he contacted Kallee. When she picked up, he ignored all pleasantries. "Is she all right?"
"Jonah? Yeah, kind of. Look, are you—"
"I'll be there in ten. I'm coming in hot with sirens and lights."
"Good. Use the side entrance and engage the armor. You may need it."
Nausea rose and he shoved it away, pounding through his apartment to the front door. It slammed behind him, but he ignored that, knowing his locks would kick in automatically.
His car sat in its spot, and he remotely started the engine before tugging the door open and sliding inside. "Senate House. Side entrance at speed. Full armament. Lights and sirens."
The vehicle moved—auto-driver engaged—pushing the car into traffic while the blare had people moving out of his path as it rocketed forward. The town passed by in a blur as he called up the secure feed and rewound long enough to view the attack on the chamber.
"Fucking assholes." Nothing else seemed appropriate as his shoulders set in an attitude of rage. His hands fisted. He'd find who did this, and they'd face retribution.
Daniella. He saw the blood on the screen. His brain felt tight, as if ready to explode.
"I'll kill them," he vented before grappling with the morass of emotions. This ball of seething rage wouldn't help her now. The best thing he could do was get her home, where she would be safe. Then he'd call the team together, because this smelled like a setup.
Rewinding the video, he watched every movement, pinpointed the location of the combatant, and grimaced as he realized they'd been fully aware of the eyes in the ceiling and walls. They'd been careful to hide behind others so no identification could be made.
"Goddammit!" His hand thudded the steering wheel.
"Do you require the vehicle to stop?" the automated voice asked.
"Negative. Proceed to the set location."
The building loomed, the stone structure imposing, and he took control of the vehicle, smoothly navigating to a small side door very few knew of. He jumped out of the car, pressing his hand to the print reader before gazing at the retinal scanner.
The door slid wide, and Kallee, a small woman with dark hair and worried brown eyes, met him. "She's coming now."
The door behind Kallee slid open, and Daniella appeared, the pristine white pantsuit she'd worn rumpled and bloodstained, her hair matted, and a doctor in a white coat was keeping her upright, muttering about foolish women.
"You're her escort?" The doctor pinned him with a sharp gaze.