"This is it Beth. Are you ready?" She nodded at my nervously and kept her hands tightly around her gun.
"Just remember when you get up there. Don't hesitate." I pushed up the lid to the manhole cover and we crept out into the nighttime streets.
We moved fast. Pivoting I crouched and swiveled to my left with Beth backing across behind me and turning to the right.
"Clear," she reported. "Clear," I replied.
I took point, my high calibre pistol in one hand, knife in the other. Beth moved behind me, her footsteps almost silent. I noted her distancing was virtually perfect, far away enough from me to hide if I was spotted, close enough to me to save my ass if I was downed. Just like her brother.
"Hold up. Sniper, fourth floor window, left side." I hand signaled to her to head over there and take him out. We'd have to split up at this point.
"There's one on the right too, third storey, covering the road." I took note of his position and signed to for her to stay put. I'd have to take him out before she could move and eliminate the other target.
I crept into the building. This district was a nightmare for this kind of mission. Exactly why Harry would've chosen it. These were all towers under renovation so there was noone in them and no alarm systems operating. Made it easy to hide snipers everywhere. The stairs were a no go. The man would likely expect an attack from behind him and have set a trap in the stairwell. Elevator shaft looked like the way to go. I got inside and shimmied up the cables. It's not as easy as it looks, nigh on impossible in fact, unless you have a really good pair of gloves and proper combat trousers. The gloves are necessary for grip, my combats were lined inside the knee and thigh with kevlar to prevent ripping which helped with scaling the cables too. I reached the third floor and slipped out of the elevator shaft. My man had been in the third window along on this floor, in one of the rooms to my left. I pushed open the door slowly, using sound to detect any changes in ambiance, the rustle of clothing, the sound of breath, the beating of a heart. He was in there. The room was very sparse. No furniture, nothing. Just a backpack which could fit a dismantled rifle and the assassin. He was pointing his scope out of the window, utterly focussed on his sights below. All the better for me. I kept my gun trained on his back. He was carrying a sidearm in a holster on his left hip and a radio wire snaked from his collar to an earpiece. I put away my gun. Utterly silently I ghosted up behind him. I moved very, very slowly when I got within arm's reach. Closer, til I could hear his every breath. Closer til I could smell the cigarette smoke on his clothes. Closer til my face was less than an inch from the back of his head. I readied my blade. With my right hand I clamped his mouth shut, preventing any cries and dragged his head back exposing his neck. My left hand struck before he had time to even gasp. The knife did its work with cold efficiency. I left his body on the floor and radioed Beth.
"He's down, I'm coming out."
"Roger," came her reply. "Moving into the left hand building."
While she took out her target I could move up towards the hostage position and signal Scarecrow.
After a short wait Beth signaled me that she'd taken down her man. She'd done it pretty fast. I was impressed. I could see Crow and Dani from where I was standing, concealed in the shadows, and there, right in front of me was Harry. Bold, swaggering, arrogant, that dark, scheming, cruel glimmer in his eyes. My gun and my knife were in my hands already. All I needed now was confirmation.
"Foster, I'm going to find Jagan," Beth's voice cut in over the mic. "I'm taking this guy's rifle, he won't be needing it and I could use some heavier weaponry."
"Good idea," I replied. "Don't fire it unless you have to though. We don't need gunshots alerting them to our presence until necessary."
I watched the proceedings with Scarecrow and Harry. They were having something of a conversation from what I could tell. I couldn't hear what they were saying distinctly but I could lipread well enough. "Dani-isn't-your-daughter." Crow you scoundrel, you've figured it out too eh? Still, your sister got it first. Bet she'll hold bragging rights on that for the rest of your life. Dani stepped forwards. A new rush of concern for her flooded me. She was crying. Dani-my daughter-was crying. Wow being a father felt so. Fricken weird. Focus I told myself. You're here to kill him. Worry about how to sort out things with Dani later. Then it happened. I saw the laser sight flit across towards Dani. I saw Harry signal the shot. I saw Steve throw himself in the way and catch the bullet. I moved.
"Beth!" I called on my mic. "Take out that last sniper. Use the rifle, do it now!"
I erupted from my hiding position and straight towards Harry. He turned and looked at me with only a hint of surprise in his face. I locked my gaze onto his with a look that told him; "I've come for you Harry. I'm bringing hell with me."
Then all hell broke loose.