Meet Lewis – Book 2: Beneath the Surface excerpt

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Lewis was listening to at least ten different voices at once, and on top of that, was managing the emergency response from the city on its broadcast grid. With an eye on the Alpha and his mate, Lewis did his best to redirect information to the Commander to avoid being caught in the confusion of the explosion in front of the Piazza. It was the sudden silence that confused the crap out of him.

 

An EMP is a burst of electromagnetic radiation that will burn out and cause irreparable damage to any electronics within its blast range. The higher the altitude of the explosion, the greater the coverage on the target ranges and vice versa. Lewis knew this, counted on it, in fact, but not while in the middle of uptown. His hardware was not protected by a faraday type cage and immediately all his systems went dark. It was time to leave.

 

Standing quickly, Lewis pulled off his now useless head piece and bolted out of the mobile control center. He heard the metal hit the ground behind him, underneath the van, and didn’t wait to see what it was that made the noise.  Lewis broke out into a full out sprint, just barely missing the initial explosion of twisted wire and metal, but the concussion picked him up and slammed him 40 feet forward against the cars lined up on the opposite side of the street, shattering glass, and throwing heat up, as well as his mobile control unit, into the air.  Lewis was wearing the proto Therian-weave, gotten by means he would never admit to, and it was the only thing that kept him alive.

 

Pulling himself off the ground, he felt the sting of abrasions healing up quickly on his back, and thanked anyone who was listening that he was wearing the body armor suit. The new prototype suits were experimental Level V Kevlar armor, resisting the .30-06 Springfield armor-piercing that was the standard at Level IV; otherwise the damage would have been lethal.

 

The force of the concussion grenade was distributed along the Therian-weave material, balancing out the damage.  So instead of shattered bones in his torso, the pain radiated out to the edges of his arms and legs, but it was manageable.  Rolling over, Lewis took a deep breath and felt the fire from his mangled van.  The Therian-weave did not prevent his hearing being damaged, but his innate abilities were making up for the lack of protection.

 

Noise was garbled – screaming, people yelling, and his vision was blurry.  Leaning back against the car he was slammed against, he tried to sit up when another Piper and his Commander rushed over to him.

 

The Commander’s mouth was moving, but Lewis could not hear anything but the high whine of ringing in his ears.

 

Lewis squinted and yelled, “What? The explosion…I…my hearing.”

 

The Commander grabbed his face and began mouthing slowly.  Are you alright? What happened?

 

“Concussion grenade.  Heard it drop, didn’t wait.”

 

Can’t reach anyone.

 

“EMP.  Like Glenveagh, I think. I’m blind…not literally, but-” Lewis’ ears began to ring and he shook his head, trying to steady it.

 

“Others…sewer….”

 

“I can hear you, kind of.  The Sergeant and the others?”

 

Vivienne.  Where is Vivienne?

 

“She’s with Sarge. They’re in the sewers. Vivienne, the Sarge, Red, and Marthinus.”

 

The Commander’s expression changed from his matter-of-fact demeanor to suddenly frantic.  He quickly turned away, only to have Lewis grab at his Therian-weave suit.

 

“They’re not alone down there.  And they’re trapped.”

 

“Where’s Huntington?”

 

Lewis shook his head again, his hearing coming back loudly as his ears popped with noise.  “I don’t know.  I lost him and his Mercs after Mr. Evans jumped.”

 

“Evans,” the Commander said through gritted teeth.

 

“All electronics are fried.  I’ve got nothing here, and even if I did, everything is dead. Can’t get word out, unless on foot.  I don’t know how far the pulse went.  Could be blocks.  Could be miles.  Could be the city.”

 

The Commander reached down and lifted Lewis to his feet, helping him stand upright. Lewis fought the urge to throw up, and then stood helpless, unable to do anything.  Lifting his hand, the Commander summoned two Pipers and took one of their weapons, a Sig Sauer, and handed it to Lewis.

 

“I need you frosty, Lewis.”

 

Lewis looked at the gun and then took it in his hand.  A field Piper he was not. Lewis spent 99% of his time in the Situation Room, handling all incoming and outgoing information that streamed to him through millions of lines of code, 24/7. Physically fit, he was trained as an Alpha’s Piper and could kill a man 20 different ways, but Lewis chose to keep his destruction on a higher level of existence. He could singlehandedly hack into any database, destroy the existence of a man, and make it appear as if he never existed. He could freeze operations of some of the most powerful business in the world, delete their information, and topple governments if given enough time. The digital world was his to play with or destroy. Anywhere. Anytime. This was power in the 21st century and Lewis was king.  Still, he handled the gun expertly and checked the chamber and clip, then nodded to his Commander.

 

“Roger that, sir.”

 

 

 

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