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The Assault Continues
Volume Two of the Assault on America Saga
By Michael S. Pendergast III
AuthorHouse LLCCopyright © 2014 Michael S. Pendergast III
All rights reserved.
The man cradling his aching head in his hands as he slumped over a cluttered desk was not a happy man.
Though he lived and worked in a rather luxurious suite – at least one that would be considered luxurious in the region he was in – the man was worried. Quite worried. It mattered not a bit that he had all of his needs, and a great many of his personal wants, met as a matter of routine. All those things were provided for with a mere call to those who attended to him. If he gave voice to this need or that want, it was met, almost instantly.
Now, however, the suite in one of the uppermost floors of the nondescript apartment building just outside of Tehran felt like a prison from which there was no escape. And the few that attended him – armed men all, who were there ostensibly to protect him and insure that he was in no way bothered – now felt like guards. And perhaps, if Allah were not very merciful and kind to him, they would be his executioners as well.
Those feelings had been gradually building for weeks.
With his impatient master's earlier announced that he would arrive tomorrow – no today, the Planner sighed, as he caught sight of the clock on his desk, half hidden behind worthless chicken-scratched pages, overfilled ashtrays, and a cup of long cold tea – those feelings of dread had begun building. Now they towered over him, causing him to huddle over his desk in fear as he waited for the tsunami to crash down upon him, crushing him and obliterating him.
Those feelings were quite reasonable for the great Planner had nothing worthwhile – at least nothing his master would consider worthwhile – to offer as proof that his last several months of effort had not been a total waste of time.
Oh, he had the basic plan well in hand, of course. But he'd developed that easily and had had it in hand for months now. He had even gone so far as to begin putting parts of it into motion.
But the means and method of pulling together the final coup – the pièce de résistance his master wanted and demanded – had eluded his mind, as impossible to grasp as a wisp of early morning fog would be to his hands. Time and time again, his efforts to find a way to produce the grand finale had eluded him.
He'd talked to Artur Munoz-Baiza, the former leader of the fifth assault team – a team that had been dissolved after four of its eight members had been killed or captured at the Canadian border halfway across the world in Washington state – for Munoz-Baiza and three others that had survived had been sent to him as consultants and assistants (as well as field instructors to help train the members of two new assault teams. One of those would replace Munoz-Baiza's own team. The second would replaced the team that had been headed by Albert Khalid Hastings. The late Albert Khalid Hastings.
Khalid's prowess and skill had seemed invincible until he and his entire team had somehow been ambushed and massacred in northern Vermont.
How that disaster had been engineered, precisely, no one yet knew. More specifically, the Planner did not know how it had been accomplished.
That bothered the Planner, but not so much as the fact that talking to Artur Munoz-Baiza and the other three survivors had done nothing to cause the juices of inspiration to begin flowing. And because they hadn't, because his deadly intelligence – or some fickle muse – had deserted him, he still had nothing to offer his powerful patron as the demanded finale for the upcoming second attacks.
Because of that, he had been forced to stall the Ayatollah over and over again. It wasn't a wise move on his part – or anyone's, as even Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had discovered a time or two – for His Excellency the Ayatollah was a very dangerous man. A very dangerous man in part because he was also a very impatient man.
Yet what else could he do?
He knew that his basic plan – a plan that was initially only incrementally different from the previous one that he had planned and implemented last September, which had quite successfully terrorized both a nation and a world by sending over 1,750 infidels to the hell Allah had prepared for them – was good. It did include taking a few more risks, here and there than the previous plan had, but nevertheless, it was still a good plan.
Moreover those additional risks were both necessary and inevitable, for the Planner knew that each new attack on their enemy simply had to be more impressive than the previous one. It had to push the level of terror ever upwards, rather than letting it subside, but doing that simply meant taking correspondingly greater risks.
Everyone knew that and accepted that, for an omelet simply couldn't be made without breaking a few eggs. But then, Islam had no shortage of men willing to be broken for its sake.
What the Planner had, however – everything but the means to provide the finale – would not satisfy his finicky master, of that he was certain, for the Ayatollah had specifically stated that he wanted members of America's most out-spoken defenders of homosexuality and women's rights, especially pedophiles and a goodly number of the whores who strutted around on MTV exposing themselves and defiling womanhood, or speaking out for gay marriage or equal rights, targeted and spectacularly executed for all their sins.
Worse, like a fool, the Planner remembered that he had, without giving the matter the consideration it now so obviously deserved, agreed, saying that it could be arranged easily enough. And of course in theory it was an easy thing to accomplish. Targeting and eliminating an individual sex icon like Brittany Spears or Lindsay Lohan, or a single outspoken activist for homosexual rights like Jacob Appel, Chastity Bono or Cindi Lauper, was, as the American expression went, a piece of cake.
And so, like an unthinking fool, he had suggested those names and others off the top of his head without considering the wider implications that targeting such persons would have for the mission as a whole.
Worst still, his master had accepted the infidels he had named on the spot – and those infidels had now become the Ayatollah's own chosen targets.
It thus seemed that he – the planning genius, he cursed himself – had to find the ways to target those particular man-less men and whores. But every drop of genius now seemed to elude him. He seemed a dried-out husk lacking every drop of inspiration.
Assassinating nameless infidels by the fistfuls, he had the genius to plan that out. Had that been all there was to the mission, it would have been a simple task, easily accomplished. But it wasn't. The near simultaneous executions of many particularly noxious infidels scattered across America that was demanded as the final act, the pièce de résistance of the whole second attack, its capstone and its crowning glory, figuring out how to accomplish that had slipped through his fingers like water.
The fundamental problem was that these famous and wealthy infidels had the means and resources to move about on the slightest whim, and they tended to do just that in the best of times, often changing schedules at the drop of a hat. And all without giving anyone – especially him – the slightest notice that they were about to do so.
Why couldn't they simply stay nicely put so that one or another of his six teams could simply proceed from their previous quite stationary targets straight to them to mete out the just desserts their wanton behaviour had earned them? He had wondered that more than once.
More to the point, the Planner didn't know the answer to that question – or how to make provisions for it. And not knowing, there was simply no way he could complete his plan. There simply was no way to plan out a schedule, months in advance, for the assault team hop-scotching throughout the west – dispatching the residents of this or that small town to hell as they went – to bring them to the place where Brittany would be sleeping on that particular night. Should they be sent to Calabasas, California, expecting to find the slut asleep there? Why, when she could all too easily be in LA – she often was – or in Louisiana. Or perhaps even somewhere else, possibly not even in the US.
And then what? Kill servants and maids, assuming such were even there? Or worse still, destroy an empty house. That would do nothing but to proclaim their – his – complete incompetance
It would be abject failure! Abject failure of one small part of the grand finale – and quite possibly many of the other parts of the finale would suffer the same sort of failures.
It would make his assault teams suddenly appear impotent.
And his master, the great Ayatollah, would not appreciate or tolerate failure – abject or otherwise. And he certainly would not take it kindly if any plan tarred Islam – or Him – with even the hint of impotence.
The Planner shook his muzzy head, hoping to clear the cobwebs that his lack of sleep had filled it with. He lifted his cup of tea, hoping that a little caffeine would help. As he looked down at the cold tea, he suddenly remembered – seeing the cigarette butt floating in it helped jog his memory – that he'd thrown his last cigarette there because his astray was already overflowing with burned out, stinking butts.
Head aching, the Planner put down the cup and turned to his computers on the table behind him. He linked to the internet, feverishly hoping to find some way to figure out where Brittany – and the others – would be so that he could aim his assault teams at them with some confidence.
As luck would have it, the very first web site he picked (through bleary, red eyes, almost at random), turned out to be his salvation. At least his fevered brain hoped it would be his salvation, for as he looked at the pages before him, a glimmer of inspiration seemed to float up from somewhere and tickle his consciousness.
On the screen before the Planner was a little blurb about a Twitter site devoted to Brittany sightings.
That got the Planner thinking. In no time at all that thinking became planning, and suddenly there were no cobwebs clogging his mind. The man behind the desk, hunched over his computer typing like a madman, was too busy to be either worried or unhappy.
He was back in his element.
Hours later, when one of his attendants poked his head into the office to inform his charge that the Ayatollah had arrived, the planning genius – totally immersed in his task – merely snapped out an order. "Go away. Come back after lunch," he said without thinking about the import of his words and kept working.
The large, well-trained, gun-wielding servant glanced back at the small, frail man half a step behind him and cringed, for he knew that the Ayatollah could have him and his family, and not just his idiot savant charge, executed with a snap of his bony, arthritic fingers.
Instead the sour, frowning Ayatollah simply nodded and turned.
Though miffed by the preemptory dismissal, and that from a minion, the Ayatollah recognized genius at work and decided to give it just a little more leeway.
"I'll be back at midday," he said unpleasantly, hurrying to his next meeting. The men he'd meet there would bear the brunt of his irritation.
He also decided that if genius at work didn't fully please him when he returned, it would not be well for the one disappointing him. Not well at all.
* * *
Promptly at 1:40 in the Tehran afternoon, more than six hours later – and almost two hours later than he had hoped (for there were always too many things that he simply had to do for himself, things he couldn't trust others to do right) – his Excellency the Ayatollah strode past the same cringing servant into the Planner's cluttered office.
The armed man behind him shut the door with no small measure of relief, leaving the Ayatollah alone with his plans master.
The Ayatollah walked across the room and sat down as regally as any king ever had. "Well, my son," he said gruffly, disapproval strong in his voice, "I trust that you have finally gotten this plan of yours well enough advanced that I may approve it. Have you worked out how to target and dispose of those enemies that I set for you. How many months ago was that?" he asked coldly.
"No Excellency," the Planner said calmly. "I have not."
The Ayatollah's face darkened and his hands clinched into fists, but before he could say a word, the Planner held his hand up for silence and continued.
"There is simply no way that we can know in advance, at least not with any certainty, where most of the chosen individuals who deserve termination will be when our teams finish attending to their penultimate targets. The movements of those people ... those types of people ... are too spontaneous, too fluid, to plan for.
"There is, however, another option, Excellency. And I am confident that it will accomplish everything that you really want to accomplish."
As the Planner turned and moved his mouse around, clicking it to bring up certain screens on his computer monitors, the Ayatollah looked on uncertainly, yet with a measure of curiosity. His minion didn't seem to be stalling any more – or to fear either censure, punishment, or death. Perhaps this intellect still possessed a spark of genius after all. Perhaps he actually did have something worth looking at and considering.
For his sake, he certainly hoped so.
"This is a map of the tasking for one of our teams. The sixth team, Excellency," he said pointing to one screen. "Targets for the first night. Targets for the second," he continued as his finger moved from one place on the screen to another. "These will not be any more of a problem for this assault team to handle than the targets last September were for any of those teams. This team will be successful in its strikes on them and give you all that you could want ... on the first two nights."
The Planner's finger moved again.
"The final targets," he said.
"I know you had specific infidels in mind, but these final targets are not particular people, for, as I said, we have no way of knowing whether the individuals you specified will actually be at the appointed place at that particular time or not. Instead our targets are areas. Specifically, areas of opportunity."
"Areas of opportunity?" the Ayatollah asked not sure just what his planning genius meant.
"Excellency, we both know that this area, and this one too," he said, his finger moving from one spot on the computer's display to another, "are cesspools of depravity.
"My mistake, when you first told me what kind of people you wanted targeted, was in picking out a few particular persons, people whose names are well known and so came readily to mind. But only a few only of those from the many who are most deserving of the fate Allah has in mind for the most disgraceful of the infidels.
"The solution is to allow Allah's providence to choose," the Planner said, briefly turning back to his computer and switching from one window to another.
"Luckily for us these Americans are obsessed with their idols. They even have web sites devoted to tracking where this or that one is, and what he or she is doing, moment to moment. Look!"
On the screen the old man saw a window titled "Brittany Watch." As his planner scrolled slowly down, he saw dates and times go past, sometimes followed by little blurbs – "Brittany enjoying an ice cream cone on Rodeo Drive" here and "Brittany taking her child to a movie" there. Sometimes there were even pictures, usually taken by some fan with a cell phone.
"What I plan to do, with your approval, is to set up a special celebrity watch site of our own and follow the activities of the types of person you have chosen. The famous but depraved infidels that the Americans so love ... all the whores and homosexuals and pedophiles and the like, and, of course their supporters in politics and the media. We will follow all of them without seeking to choose one over another.
"Until the last night of operations.
"On that night all that will be posted on our site will be the names and sighting information for the two or three individuals that Allah has positioned in this or that area of opportunity. Those will be the infidels providence provides for our considered attention. All our teams will have to do then is to call up our web site and in so doing receive their final target designations.
"Then they will eliminate them ... with prejudice."
The Planner fell silent and waited.
His master continued looking at the last screen that the planner had brought up as he ended his spiel.
In the banner at the top of the screen was site's name – "famousinfamous.com" – though of course that site did not yet exist except on the Planner's computer. Below that was a list of clickable boxes. The planner clicked on the one that read "Today in Los Angeles".
Suddenly dozens of names in alphabetical order popped up, each in HTML script. And each name was followed by a brief descriptor – pop singer, film star, producer, publisher, politician, and the like.
Excerpted from The Assault Continues by Michael S. Pendergast III. Copyright © 2014 Michael S. Pendergast III. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Table of Contents
ContentsAuthor's Note, ix,
Washington's Third Vision, xxi,
The Prelude (Chapters 1 – 5), 1,
We're Back (Chapters 6 – 16), 85,
The Day After (Chapters 17 – 23), 286,
The Second Night (Chapters 24 – 32), 348,
The Next Day (Chapters 33 – 36), 482,
The Third Night (Chapters 37 – 44), 535,
The Following Day (Chapters 45 – 50), 634,
Surprise – Yet Another Night (Chapters 51 – 52), 702,
The Aftermath (Chapters 53 – 55), 736,