Author : Julian Miles, Staff Writer
“Where are you?”
“That’s a relief. I was so worried when the news said you’d been cornered in Rio.”
So was I. It was only after fleeing I found it had only been media hype, not a snatch team.
“Doctor Flowers says we need another sample.”
A chill ran down my spine. She said ‘doctor’, not ‘professor’. That meant she was under observation, duress, or both.
“Tell him I’ll contact him tomorrow afternoon.”
“Will you have time to visit?”
Not good. That was a ‘do not come near this town’ warning.
“I’ll see what I can do. Love you, Tara.”
“Love you to. Bye.”
I called MI6 as soon as she hung up. I identified myself with the agreed code for day and date, then got them to send an armed MI5 rescue team to our home. The home I had never seen.
Four years ago I had been stood at the altar, Tara’s hand in mine, when something blew the vicar’s head apart. The slaughter at my wedding was the culmination of two years of international frenzy over my unique ‘condition’. I fled from the venue alone, over the bodies of the small army that had been allocated to defend me.
I worked at the New Calder Hall reactor. I was there the day that its ‘revolutionary innovation in reactor cooling’ failed, bequeathing Britain with Chernobyl-on-Cumbria.
Tara was my specialist during treatment. To everyone’s surprise, I showed no ill effects whatsoever. Tara received several awards for the work she did that led to the identification of ‘blue cells’. She says that her engagement ring is the only one she treasures.
My body had been exposed to quantities of radiation almost guaranteed to cause cancer. Whether my mutated white cells were a freak result or a pre-existing condition will never be known. But the results are clear: people who get a shot of my ‘blue cells’ have their cancerous cells destroyed. No-one has yet managed to replicate blue cell serum. I am the golden goose that bleeds the cure for cancer.
Tara and I decided to make blue cell serum available to the world on a critical need basis. An anonymous billionaire provided funding, as well as starting a research project to artificially produce blue cell serum. It was in its early stages when the first attack occurred. Someone had decided that the value of controlling the only source of the blue cells was worth murdering Tara’s colleagues wholesale.
A year later, the body count had risen to a point where I called a stop to the procession of body guards and safe houses. Our wedding was the last event to be heavily guarded, as the protocols for me becoming a fugitive had been agreed. The wedding showed just how far they would go.
As to who ‘they’ are, it seems that it is a consortium of powerful and greedy people. They want to market the serum made from my blood. It would become something available only to the wealthiest, with a black market for placebos worth even more.
Tara and I will not have that, and we are supported by people at all levels and seemingly everywhere. I cannot count the times that I have evaded a snatch team solely because a stranger intervened.
One day, I will exchange vows with Tara. One day, I will walk into our home. One day, when the researchers at the fortified and hidden laboratory work out how to refine blue cell serum.
Until then, I run.
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