"All right! Pass obstacle 1, double time to obstacle 2!"
I was overseeing the training course in the SCIT basement. We were putting the new girl, Myra, through her paces. I barked orders from the viewing platform as they scrambled over and under metal barriers, sheer walls, flat netting, anything that'd make them sweat, put them under pressure. We had to get Myra up to speed before we flew out to France to investigate the Stalker's possible connections within their government. That was the point of the intensive training course. As I watched, Crow surged ahead with Jagan hot on his tail. Dani and Drake hung back, a little under their maximum work rate, holding pace with Myra who, whilst not as good as the others yet, was doing admirably.
"Dive over obstacle 3! Behind cover now! Targets popping down range, Myra, take them out, everyone else, hold fire!"
Myra whipped out her training pistol and fired off a series of double taps as the cardboard cut outs of men popped up and down like whack-a-moles. Her weapon clicked, smoke drifting from the barrel, slide locked back, her last 9mm cartridge tinkling on the floor.
"Good shooting Sails, not a bullet wasted! No breaks, everyone upstairs, close quarters combat training next! Jagan and Crow you two pair up and get working, you're familiar with the drill. Dani, go over knife work with Drake, you two both struggled with the disarms earlier. I'll test Myra's basics."
The others began sparring in their groups as I took stance in front of Myra. She looked calm, her body betraying none of the nerves she must be feeling. That was a good sign.
"I'll assume you've had some CQC training before, correct?"
"Have you ever killed in an unarmed combat situation before?"
She shook her head.
"Okay, that's fine. You'll spar with me now so I can evaluate your level and decide how much training is necessary. We do things a bit differently at SCIT. Don't worry about that for now, just remember to stay focussed and defend yourself as if I were trying to kill you."
A hint of hesitation crossed her face at this last sentence but was gone before it was noticeable, replaced by a cool and controlled expression. She flicked her hair out of her eyes, looked straight at me and nodded. She was ready to go. I sank my weight a little, guard up. I focussed on the base of her throat, all attacking intent is betrayed by the breathing visible here and it's the best spot for your periphery to pick up any incoming blow. I inched a half step closer to her and she raised her guard. Then I flew at her, as if I were trying to kill her.