Collisions
Author: Othello Gooden Jr.

Chapter 8
Interrogation

“So what do we have on the recent bombings?” Zyra asked, turning to Naira. All of them were sitting in the rectangular office discussing important issues on the space station.

 

Zyra had these meetings at least once a month. These meetings occurred twice a month if it was urgent in the matter of national security such as terrorism, a system modification, or system repair in engineering.

 

“Second Zyra Casino closed for repairs.” Naira said in a hopeful tone as she layed back in her chair, smirking.

 

“Contrary to what you believe, Casinos are cash cows. There’s no other way around it!” Leon Tori shook his head at Naira’s reaction.

 

“There are other cash cows less de’ms than them! I specifically ordered to have that place shut down for years and—”

 

“Naira, we’ve been through this before. It’s not as easy as you think. We can’t just shut them down because the Bible says that their operations are a gross sin!” Zyra interrupted.

 

“Maybe. We just have to catch them doing something on the same level that’s illegal from the government’s prospective like embezzlement or working with terrorists.” Naira sat up in her chair, her grin fading.

 

“That’s the thing. Mr. Hanz has broken no Raylorian law with his casino’s operations.” Zyra pleaded, hoping Naira would understand.

 

“But under the Raylorian law sub law set ‘the Nairan Code’ he has!” Naira imposed.

“Mind you, those set of laws are in martyrdom since your parent’s—”

 

“Does it matter? Since its alleged abolishment, crime is on the rise at an all time high and the Raylorian population is returning to the ways that still corrupts Earth and the majority of the Lunarian society!” Naira interrupted, her annoyance of the matter showed through her loud voice.

 

The room was silent for a few moments as Naira’s voice rang throughout the room. The lady sat back in her chair with her eyebrows slanted out of anger.

 

“The only crime we’re seeing on the space station is Z.I. and this Project Gene slash Chimera or whatever they call it these days!” Zyra finally said.

 

“I see Z.I. more as a threat because there are now innocent people getting harmed by their vigilante biz!” Naira shrugged.

 

“This is new.” Leon Tori raised his eyebrow at Naira’s denunciation of Z.I.’s latest activities.

 

“Since the bombing of the Second Zyra Casino a few weeks ago, targets throughout sector C have also been hit. Hospitals, homes of government officials, even the town hall!” Naira shook her head. She had high hopes for this group after seeing that they were doing the job that she couldn’t from the political side.

 

“This is enough to believe that Z.I. is no longer the vigilante group we thought they were. Yet from the beginning I believed they were terrorists.” Zyra mused.

 

“It was only a matter of time, Zyra.” Naira said in agreement.

 

“What about the one we have in custody?” Mr. Tori turned to Naira. His eyes were between her and the Science Administer.

 

“The Truth Nanites are working. He keeps saying short phrases over and over again but we can’t figure out who or what it means.” Ms. Williams answered.

 

“What’s the word?” Zyra asked, almost jokingly.

 

“Merkayzuric.” Ms. Williams replied, shortly grinning at Zyra’s choice of words.

“He’s speaking in code.” Mr. Tori presumed.

 

“What do you think it means?” Zyra raised an eyebrow at him.

“Considering the context. Merk is a common word amongst today’s youths.” Leon explained.

 

“Merk is synonymous for beat up or kill right?” Naira sounded intrigued but she wasn’t looking toward him. She kept her eyes focused on the folder in front of her.

 

“More I’m gonna beat you to a pulp than I’m gonna kill you.” Mr. Tori scoffed.

“Okay, so what about the last part?” Zyra pressed.

 

“Ayzuric. Hmm… I dunno. I think it’s someone’s name.” Mr. Tori shook his head and sighed.

 

Zyra nodded and then looked back to Ms. Williams. “Does Mr. Worrak say any other words in his deliriums?”

 

“Just that word and ‘Ay Zuric’.” Ms. Williams slightly hesitated to answer. She tried to hide her disappointment by burying her eyes in a folder sitting before her.

 

“Don’t be too quick to think your subject is a failure Ms. Williams.” Mr. Tori sensed her dismay.

 

“But ‘Ay Zuric’ doesn’t—”

“He’s calling out to someone!” Mr. Tori interrupted.

 

Naira sighed; folding her arms and shortly shook her head. “Or he could have himself trained to make what the Truth Nanites make him say come out wrong like a blithering idiot!”

 

“Right! Given that it took them almost a week to get through.” Ms. Williams said agreeing.

 

“So ‘Ay Zuric’  Could be A. Zuric or—”

 

“A. Zyrc.” Naira looked up at Mr. Tori. Her facial expression was emotionless. It was that stare that made him stop talking as the two were making eye contact.

 

“A. Zyrc. Wait. AARON ZYRC? Head of the University’s Frat and Sor?” the deciphering of Worrak’s words opened Zyra’s eyes. She was shocked.

 

“I knew he was bad news from the start.” Naira thought aloud.

“Just because he once ran a church in the same neighborhood as your—”

“HE’S FAR WORSE THAN HER!” Naira interrupted him, screaming her words.

 

All eyes turned to Naira. She sat there clueless to why everyone was staring at her. Tori had leaned away from her during the outburst. A few moments later Naira cleared her throat.

 

“Scuse me.” She apologized but her tone wasn’t sincere.

“Wasn’t his crime pardoned?” Zyra asked, not fully remembering all the details.

 

“He was let off the hook after they executed my parents for the dirt that they did.” Naira grumbled. “He denounced them to save his hide.”

 

“But he didn’t do it again as far as I know.” Zyra shrugged.

 

Naira rested her head on her hands, looking down at her tablet. “What happens behind closed doors in a family whose head is a de’ms foo is what it is.”

 

 “But the law has forgiven him.” Mr. Tori pleaded.

“But God won’t until he repents from his de’ms ways!” Naria raised her voice.

“Where’s your proof?” Zyra challenged.

 

“The bad blood between him and his son. That sicko messed up his childhood.  I wouldn’t be surprised if Z.I. is a front for the so called ‘Lord Zyrc’!”

 

“A group of vigilantes?” Zyra sounded oblivious yet there was a hint of sarcasm in her tone.

 

Naira looked up and shook her head. “Criminals!”

 

“Right—But what more proof do you have that Aaron Zyrc is their leader?” Zyra sounded even more skeptic.

 

“Recall that a few years ago he was jailed for having ties with Giordano’s mafia.” Naira hesitated in her words as she searched through her tablet within a section filled with profiles of criminals, both active and inactive.

 

“And what about his son?” Zyra still wasn’t convinced.

“His son’s record is clean.” Naira said, hopeful.

“But his wife’s record isn’t.” Mr. Tori interjected.

“Who?” Naira feigned ignorance.

“He’s married to that Kira.” Zyra said with a smile.

 

“Yeah, well, I told her not to marry into such a de’ms family.” Naira answered with much apathy.

 

“Kira Mancini?” Mr. Tori looked for answers in a folder of profiles on his tablet. He soon found a mug shot of Kira in it.

 

“Her full name is Laura Kira Katia Giordano-Mancini-Zyrc.” Naira eyeballed him from her peripheral vision.

 

“Ah, yes her. The junkie slash—”

 

“She’s been clean ever since she married Zyrc’s son.” Naira interrupted with much grumbling.

 

Mr. Tori cleared his throat and nodded. “Right—So Zyrc would want his son to marry into that family because doing so would gain the favor of Kira’s father?”

 

Zyra sighed after Tori made his deduction. She hid a small grin in her lips. “The Electro himself.”

 

“If that isn’t enough evidence to bring him in, then I don’t know what is!” Naira said dejected.

 

“It’s enough now given the situation.” Mr. Tori said in agreement.

 

“Have our men concentrate on Z.I. We’ll have the police arrest Zyrc.” Zyra ordered with a nod.

 

“Will do! And what about the monsters?” Naira closed her folder.

 

“They aren’t as a threat as we thought they were. Project Gene is like a family of sentient wildlife. They attack you only if they sense you are a threat to them.” Zyra explained.

 

“Got it!” Naira prepared to head out as she rose from her seat.

“Wait!” Zyra said in stopping Naira.

“Yes?” Naira paused in her steps.

 

“One of the UN leaders left you a voice mail on the Global Warming issue. He said he’s been trying to reach you all month.” Zyra explained.

 

“I presume that he left you one also?” Naira sighed.

“It’s best you just get it over with and help them.” Zyra firmly stated with a nod.

 

“My help can only go so far. Much is dependent on them.” With that Naira headed out along with the others and Zyra.

 

In her office suite down the hall, Naira sat at her desk cluttered with papers and another tablet.  Most of the papers were reports on station wide damages, deaths, and criminals. Then there were the police reports and allocation of funds for the Zyran Police.  She was at her desk for several hours after the meeting, searching through the papers. Some had items to complete while others were just progress reports. Naira made notes on some of them. These were things she new Zyra would want to know about in next month’s cabinet meeting.

 

Next to the pile of papers was her computer.  She turned to a small folder on the computer’s desktop.  In it was a password-protected file labeled “UMOTE”.  After entering in the right password, the file opened up a program. The background image was a black triangle tilted on its sides pointed to the right. In the center of it was a picture of the moon. After the loading screen reached 100% a chat screen opened up and then a small box labeled “connecting” appeared. A few minutes later Ivon’s figure faded into view. He was in a dimly lit place.

 

“It has been done, Madam Naira.” Ivon grinned.

“Great! Tell me, where did you find—”

 

“On his way to the office as usual.” Ivon interrupted optimistically, anticipating Naira’s enthusiasm.

 

“I see. You know what to do with the body.” Naira nodded with a grin.

“Anything else?” Ivon looked at Naira’s eyes, seeing it was on something off screen.

“Z.I. has gone rogue. Deal with them.” Naira turned her eyes back to him.

“Yes ma’am.” Ivon bowed lightly.

“Lastly, keep a closer eye on Laurie.” Naira smiled.

“Any reason?” Ivon was quite baffled by these instructions.

 

“Her father-in-law is a criminal but I think that he may have brought her and his son into this as well.” Naira reasoned.

 

“Why not bring them all in?” Ivon suggested.

 

“We have proof that Zyrc I is guilty. The same isn’t true with Zyrc II and his wife presently.” Naira answered.

 

“Okay, I’ll have UMOTE—”

“This is something that I want you to handle personally, Von.” Naira grinned.

“Gotcha. Is that all?” Ivon nodded.

 

“That is all.” Naira nodded back. Soon thereafter, she exited out of the program and went back to working on the papers on her desk.

 

A few moments later, a telephone ringing sound was heard on her flat screen TV mounted on the wall near her computer. Naira rose from her chair, grabbed the remote near the left edge of her computer’s desk and pressed the on button. When the TV turned on, a blue screen faded into view. Pressing another button on the remote, the TV’s settings displayed a black label reading “TV”. Naira quickly pressed another button and that label changed to “VideoCon”. A man in an all white suit was present on screen.

 

“Ah, you must be the UN rep they sent?” Naira presumed. Her tone was uninterested.

“Yes, and I believe this talk is long overdue, Madam Naira. Earth’s global climate is—”

 

“Yeah, yeah, yeah. I told you initially what had to be done. Mr. Lance even sent you the plans to build the climate regulator!”

 

“It’s not as easy as you think.” The UN rep sighed.

 

“Really? It’s not my fault that the Earth has slipped into another recession thanks to the banks!” Naira scolded.

 

“I understand your frustration but we’re independent of the consumer.” The rep shrugged off her concern in a mellow voice. “But the fallout from—“

 

“Not buying it. The UN bailed out many corporations that were going under with the help of other business savy leaders around the world. You’re saying that those people can’t rise again to help? Oh wait, they’ve all retired! HA! So sorry for you.” Naira’s sudden displeasure of the situation along with her sarcasm made the UN rep feel uneasy.

 

“And what does this have to do with the problem that we’re having currently?” the rep cleared his through, recovering from his uneasiness resulting from Naira’s previous statement.

 

“God would never let the Earth cook his creations.” Naira bluntly stated.

 

“Where’s your proof?” The UN rep raised an eyebrow, scoffing at Naira’s mentioning of God.

 

“Just look around you!” Naira yelled.

 

The man then looked around him aimlessly and back to the screen. “Sorry, I don’t see what you’re talking about.”

 

“So you’re saying that you don’t believe God exists?” Naira dimmed her eyes at him.

“Exactly.” The man challenged.

 

“Wrong answer!” At that, Naira turned off the TV.

 

The incoming call sound on her TV rang once again as Naira turned toward her desk. She let it ring, ignoring the phone call as she went back to work. The UN rep called a few more times and then gave up. Another call came in several minutes later. Naira sighed as she got up again to answer it. This time Zyra was on the screen.

 

“If this is about that blasphemer, I’m not interested. They need to—”

 

“At times like these we must negotiate with unbelievers.” Zyra interrupted, dimming her eyes at Naira.

 

“Zyra, we’re wasting our money on something that could be easily fixed with faith!” Naira complained while folding her arms.

 

“For us, that’s easy to say but Earth is so confused, they don’t know right from wrong.” Zyra explained calmly.

 

“Then why help them?” Naira sounded lost.

 

“Because our existence is a result of the UN granting my father the okay to build societies in outerspace!” Zyra said straightly after a sigh.

 

“But they don’t appreciate our help!” Naira sounded more upset.

“It takes time, Naira!” Zyra said warmly.

“Grah! Their time is up! Those de’ms foos can just die!” Naira grumbled.

 

“Those were the exact words of your mother.” Hearing that straight out of her mouth made Zyra reminisce on the times back when Naira’s mother was still alive.

 

Though her daughter was nothing like her mother from the start, given the same position, the opposite slowly became true. Yet since she was in office, Naira II held a grudge against her mother, trying her best not to follow in her footsteps. This was mainly because the majority of her teenage life was spent in prison on charges of breaking the Nairan code many times. The day when the Queen and her co-conspirators were tried and convicted of crimes against humanity was the day Naira II was released from prison.

 

“I AM NOTHING LIKE MY MOTHER!” Naira screamed as she leaned forward with a finger pointed at Zyra.

 

“Then help Earth out, okay?” Zyra remained unmoved by Naira’s outburst. In her mind, she was grinning. It was the exact response she wanted. Naira would deny anything she does that her mother use to do—down to the smallest detail. “Besides, Earth’s in dire straights since GUB went around nuking super powered nations! We are their last hope to rebuild their world.”

 

“But the greats are all dead because of—”

 

Zyra sighed. “What’s left of the establishment are the ones who are begging for our mercy. Should we deny them the chance to redeem themselves?”

 

“Considering that they brought this upon themselves—again!” Naira shrugged.

 

“We all make mistakes.”

“Not as big as the DE’MS fools that made an art out of collapsing nations.”

 

“Your mother was in on it or have you forgotten that?” Zyra raised an eyebrow at her.

 

Naira was silent for a few moments. “That’s why she’s rotting in Gehenna with Judas.”

 

“So you see, negotiating with the North American Union isn’t so bad afterall.”

 

“But—“

 

“If Trump did it, so can you!” Zyra’s tone was hopeful.

Naira looked away as she sat her head in the palm of her left hand and sighed. “Fine. I’ll see what I can do.”

 

“Good. Let me know how goes after you’re done, okay?” Zyra grinned, sounding optimistic.

 

“Alright.” Naira turned back to her and nodded.

 

The transmission ended and the screen went black.

 

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