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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Download/Upload (11/17/11)

TITLE: The Mission!
By Robin Ocasio
11/29/11


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It was pitch black. The air was damp, musty. A cool breeze gently rustled through the trees providing cover as the small dark figure stealthily crept forward. Chip strained his ears, silently halting his movements, to listen intently for the faintest sound that might betray that his presence had been detected. It was difficult to hear, above the racket of his furiously thumping heart. It sounded like thunder in his ears. A tree branch relentlessly jabbed his ribcage, rocks pressed sharply into his left knee. He ignored them both, intent on completing his mission.

The darkness wasnít bothersome; he knew the layout of the compound as well as he knew his own name. As a seasoned soldier he had spent every waking moment for days poring over the mission directives, carefully studying each detail, planning for every contingency. He knew he could not fail, no matter what the cost, innocent lives depended on it.

His mission: scale the rock face, climb to the top of the 100 foot precipice, slither across the plateau along the drainage ditch to the far side of the north entrance. There he would locate the access panel leading to the underground ventilation shaft. After repelling down it, he would painstakingly cut his way through the steel bars guarding its base. Once inside he would simply follow the power relay to its main hub in order to disable the energy source feeding the security system. He would have to move quickly, evading multiple foot details to reach Solomon undetected.

Solomon; a lame code name, but the moniker stuck due to its claim to wisdom, mimicking the biblical counterpart. In actuality, Solomon was nothing more than an elaborate bio human computer prototype, yet deemed key to the future existence of mankind. Chip would need to download Solomonís hard drive before uploading its replacement. It would be a tricky process, requiring his famous, lightening fast butterfly touch. Good thing he possessed nerves of steel!

Solomon could not be allowed to masquerade amongst the population, infecting innocents with the virus that would leave them brain dead; little more than human zombies going through the motions of life, alive, but dead all the same. The walking dead!

Chip belonged to an elite fighting force. When his commander asked for volunteers, Chip immediately stepped front and center. He was ready to sacrifice his life if necessary, whatever it took to rescue the prisoners. Chip wished more were a part of the resistance. Many seemed to be either paralyzed by fear, blatantly indifferent, or beguiled by the virus already infecting them. Ultimately, Chip wanted to be one of those who would make a difference. He would be that one! Goliath, Solomonís creator would soon learn that the head of his prize prototype had been completely cut off. Unable to sustain its elaborate network connections, Solomonís ruse would soon be exposed. Goliath would fail! Truth would prevail and those infected with the virus would have a chance to accept the life saving treatment that would make them whole and immune to the effects of the virus.

Chip shifted his position slightly, peering into the distance searching for the signal to begin. The rest of his team would be leading various attacks on other fronts. There it was, light shinning on the horizon. It grew closer. Chip felt exhilarated! Peace, anticipation flooded him. His sign had come!

Chip purposefully inhaled deeply, one long breath, holding it for ten seconds, before exhaling slowly, deliberately releasing himself, his cares, and the mission into his heavenly Fatherís hands.

Looking toward the light, Chip started to move forward but found he could not. His knee was caught fast! Using all his strength he pushed forward. Oomph! His face kissed the dirt! Stifling a grunt, Chip lifted his head, working a stick out of his mouth with his tongue. Carefully he began to unravel his body attempting to move his limbs into a crouching position. He was pinned to the ground.

Desperation welled up, "I have a mission! Must complete the mission!"

Chip struggled furiously to free himself.

His ribs hurt. He was caught in a vice.

An annoying rumbling grew louder.

"Chip, Chip wake up! Youíre dreaming, wake up, son!"

Suddenly, Chip was wide awake.

His heart was racing, but his mind was perfectly clear.

God had spoken in the depths of his heart.

Chip knew exactly what God wanted.

One question remained; did he have the courage, the faith, to obey?


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This article has been read 265 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Nancy Bucca12/01/11
Interesting story and very unique take on topic. Very descriptive and (for me) a little hard to follow. (My brain's doesn't seem to be wired for so much action, but after reading it a couple of times I started getting a better idea of what it was about).

With your open ending, I can't help wondering what it is Chip has been called to do. I take it, it's a spiritual matter, that what he experienced in the dream was a metaphor for what he is called to do in real life.

I must say, I really like this story, even if it was hard to get into at first. Again, that's probably me. I like dialogue better than action, and that's what really caught my attention at the end.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 12/01/11
This was really good. The beginning drew me in immediately. I like the names you chose for your characters. The subtle play on computer Chip to take down a computer was brilliant.

My only complaint might be that you fell back on the familiar it was all a dream. With that said, I do believe God talks to us through our dreams. This was a fun, suspenseful, and fresh take on the topic. Well-done!
Hiram Claudio12/06/11
Very interesting ... and very nice work! I like the way you painted progressing scenes that led me on a journey.

In the middle of the story, you mentioned the computer named Solomon and that commented that using that label was "lame." I re-read the piece to be certain of my impression. You write the rest of the story as a story teller. That one section hit me as you were editorializing - giving an opinion. I don't know, I think it can be best to let the reader decide how lame the label was. Just my thoughts on that part.

Overall, this was an excellent piece!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 12/16/11
Congratulations for ranking 7th in your level!