The bourne supremacy, p.169
Larger Font   Reset Font Size   Smaller Font       Night Mode Off   Night Mode

       The Bourne Supremacy, p.169

         Part #2 of Jason Bourne series by Robert Ludlum
 
Page 169

 

  `It's unexpected but not illogical,' answered McAllister. `A safeguard, perhaps. False passports abound over here, as we happen to know. '

  `Queen Kong checked us out. Strike one. '

  Then, perhaps, to make sure we don't link up with the kind of people you suggested last night,' whispered the analyst, his words too low to be heard by the Chinese conduit.

  That's possible. ' Bourne raised his voice slightly so that the conduit could hear him, his eyes on the border gate's entrance. There was no one. `Who's following us?

  The Pig. '

  `Soo?'

  `Ever so, sir. It is why I must stay out of sight. '

  `Anyone else?'

  `No one that I could see, but I don't know who is on the road to the hills. '

  `I'll take him out,' said the man from Medusa called Delta. Wo!' objected McAllister. `His orders from Sheng may include confirming that we remain alone, that we don't meet others. You just agreed it was possible. '

  The only way he could do that is to reach others himself. He can't do that . . . if he can't do that. And your old friend wouldn't permit a radio transmission while he's in a plane or a chopper. It could be picked up. '

  `Suppose there are specific signals � a flare or a powerful flashlight beamed up, telling the pilot everything's clear?'

  Jason looked at the analyst. `You do think things out. '

  There is a way,' said Wong from the shadows, `and it is a privilege I should like to reserve for myself, no additional charge. '

  `What privilege?'

  `I will kill the Pig. It will be done in such a way that cannot be compromised. '

  `What? Astonished, Bourne started to turn his head.

  `'Please, sir! Look straight ahead. '

  `Sorry. But why?'

  `He fornicates indiscriminately, threatening the women he favours with loss of employment for themselves and their husbands, even brothers and cousins. Over the past four years he has brought shame to many families, including mine on my blessed mother's side. '

  `Why hasn't he been killed before now?'

  `He travels with armed guards, even in Macao. Yet in spite

  of this, several attempts have been made by enraged men. They resulted in reprisals. ' `Reprisals? Asked McAllister quietly. `People were chosen, again indiscriminately, and charged with stealing supplies and equipment from the garrison. The punishment for such crimes is death in the fields. '

  `Jesus,' muttered Bourne. `I won't ask questions. You've got reason enough. But how tonight?

  `His guards are not with him now. They may be waiting for him on the road to the hills, but they are not with him now. You start out, and if he follows you I will follow him. If he does not follow you, I will know that your journey will not be interrupted and I will catch up with you. ' `Catch up with us? Bourne frowned. `After I kill the Pig and leave his pig body in its proper and, for him, disgraceful place. The female toilet. ' `And if he does follow us? Asked Jason. `My opportunity will come, even as I serve as your eyes. I will see his guards, but they will not see me. No matter what he does, the moment will be there when he separates himself, if only by a few feet in the darkness. It will be enough, and it will be assumed he has brought shame to one of his own men. ' `We'll get started. ' `You know the way, sir. ' `As if I had a road map. '

  `I will meet you at the base of the first hill beyond the high grass. Do you remember it? `It'd be hard to forget. I nearly bought a grave in China there. ' `After seven arvelous , head into forest towards the fields. '

  `I intend to. You taught me. Have a good hunt, Wong. ' `I will, sir. I have reason enough. '

  The two Americans walked across the ravaged old square, away from the dim light into complete darkness. An obese figure in civilian clothes watched them from the shadows of the concrete walkway. He looked at his watch and nodded, half smiling to himself in satisfaction. Colonel Soo Jiang then turned and walked back through the man-made tunnel into the stark immigration complex � iron gates and wooden booths and barbed wire in the distance � all bathed in dull grey light. He was greeted by the prefect of the Zhuhai Shi-Guangdong Province Control, who strode purposefully, martially, enthusiastically, towards him. `They must be very important men, Colonel,' said the prefect, her eyes not at all hostile, but instead with a look that bordered on blind worship. And fear.

  `Oh, they are, they are,' agreed the colonel.

  `Surely they have to be for such an illustrious officer as yourself to make sure of their requirements. I made the telephone call to the man in Guangzhou, as you requested, and he thanked me, but he did not get my name-`

  `I will make sure he has it,' Soo broke in, wearily.

  `And I will keep only my best people on the gates to greet them when they return later tonight to Macao. '

  Soo looked at the woman. `That won't be necessary. They will be taken to Beijing for strictly confidential, highest-level conferences. My orders are to remove all records of their having crossed the Guangdong border. '

  `That confidential?

  `Ever so, Madame Comrade. These are secret affairs of state and must be kept as such even from your most intimate associates. Your office, please. '

  `At once,' said the broad shouldered woman, turning with military precision. `I have tea or coffee, and even the British whisky from Hong Kong. '

  `Ah, yes, the British whisky. May I escort you, Comrade? My work is finished. '

  The two somewhat grotesquely Wagnerian figures marched in waddling lockstep towards the streaked glass door of the prefect's office.

  `Cigarettes!' whispered Bourne, gripping McAllister's shoulder.

  `Where?'

  `Up ahead, off the road on the left. In the woods!'

  `I didn't see them. '

  `You weren't looking for them. They're being cupped but they're there. The bark of the trees gets a touch of light one moment, then it's dark the next. No rhythm, just erratic. Men smoking. Sometimes I think the Far East likes cigarettes more than sex. '

  `What do we do?'

  `Exactly what we're doing, only louder. '

  What?

  `Keep walking and say whatever comes to mind. They won't understand. I'm sure you know Hiawatha or Horatio on the Bridge, or some chant from your wild college days. Don't sing, just say the words; it'll keep your mind off things. '

  `But why?

  `Because this is what you predicted. Sheng is making sure that we don't link up with anyone who could be a threat to him. Let's give him that reassurance, okay?

  `Oh, my God Suppose one of them speaks English?

  `It's highly unlikely, but if you'd rather we'll just improvise a conversation. ' `No, I'm not good at that. I hate parties and dinners, I never know what to say. '

  That's why I suggested the doggerel. I'll interrupt whenever you pause. Go ahead now, speak casually but rapidly. This is no place for Chinese scholars who speak fast English . . . The cigarettes are out. They've spotted us! Goon!'

  `Oh, Lord . . . very well. Ah, ah . . . "Sitting on O'Reilly's porch, telling tales of blood and slaughter-"'

  That's very appropriate? Said Jason, glaring at his pupil.

  `"Suddenly it came to me, why not shag O'Reilly's daughter"-` `Why, Edward, you constantly surprise me. ' `It's an old fraternity song,' whispered the analyst. `What! I can't hear you, Edward. Speak up. ' `"Fiddilly-eye-eee, fiddilly-eye-oWj, Fiddilly-eye-eee to the one ball Reilly"-` That's terrific!' interrupted Bourne, as they passed the section of the woods where only seconds ago concealed men had been smoking. `I think your friend will appreciate your point of view. Any further thoughts?

 
Turn Navi Off
Turn Navi On
Scroll Up
Scroll
Add comment

Add comment