Courtney Kennedy stepped out the elevator. She smiled at the young man in the powder blue shirt and he blushed and pushed his glasses further up his nose. The woman he saw had wide fluttering green eyes that admired him longingly. She strolled confidently between the glass box offices of the solicitors and barristers. She had her mission and she would not deviate from it. “Excuse me ma’am?” a handsome blonde man stood in the doorway of an office cubicle. “Can I help you at all?” Courtney faced him and saw a friendly old woman carrying a basket. “Oh, no, I’m fine. I’m just bringing my son some lunch. He works here. He’s very successful. We always knew he would be…” The blonde man shook his head and broke the conversation short. “I’m sure he’s looking forward to it.” He smiled and closed the office door. Courtney kept going up another set of stairs. The law firm was quite prestigious in Melbourne. They handled a lot of high profile cases even some Post-Human ones had been discretely resolved by this group. Fischer & Beckett was its name and they were well respected in the legal community. As Courtney reached the top of the stairs she collided with man in a dark grey suit. He was in his forties but was prematurely bald. Anger flashed in his eyes as they ran into one another. The folders he was carrying fell and spilled onto the carpet near the photocopier. “What the hell did you think you were…” he began to raised his voice then calmed when he saw the young intern in the short skirt on all fours on the floor trying to collect his papers. At least that was what he saw… Courtney didn’t care about his stupid paperwork; she was busy. She kept marching along the corridor checking the names on doors. The man at the photocopier was confused as he found himself collecting the fallen documents. Wasn’t there a young woman? Courtney found that people didn’t ask questions if they saw what they wanted to see. She was only eighteen, but she already had a reputation. Among the people with the right bank accounts she was known simply as Mirage. Her Post-Human ability was to be able to manipulate the minds of people close to her and show them whatever she wanted them to see. The only downside was that this mirage only lasted for several seconds at a time. Courtney had always been an outsider. She was never noticed by the boys at high school and she never felt like she fit into any social group. When her ability developed she manipulated everyone who had made her feel rejected. She was still that ordinary looking girl and she still played mind games with those around her. The young man at the elevator saw a sexy girl that was well out of his league, the blonde man downstairs saw an old woman that was going to talk his ears off and the man by the photocopier saw a scantly dressed intern that would do anything to right a wrong. She never got tired of messing with people. She was plain and nondescript when she walked past the women in the corridor. Even unattractive for some. She saw a slight smile of self-assurance on the face of one young solicitor. She was glad she was prettier than the girl that walked past. The men saw and an old woman or an attractive and aggressive looking businesswoman. Both of which men didn’t want to talk to in passing. Finally head office. Courtney looked around for the office she wanted. Jamie Fischer’s office. She saw the plaque on an office on the mezzanine. That was it. Then she saw a board meeting taking place to her right through a glass wall. There was Jamie Fischer speaking to some clients. Dammit! She had to think quickly. She looked around for a way to improvise. She crossed her arms while she concentrated. She had to make sure that everyone that looked her way saw an empty space or they would ask her why she was there. And seeing she was wearing a padded lycra body suit, she didn’t want to explain that. The reception desk. The woman at the reception desk looked up from her laptop. “Yes? Do you have an appointment?” Then her eyes grew wide as she saw a police officer. “I’m sorry, can I help you officer?” The lady officer lent on the desk. “Yes you can actually. I just need a few words with Mr Fischer, if that’s ok.” Courtney smiled to herself as the secretary hurriedly scanned her boss’ schedule. “He is umm…busy at the moment. Can I get you to call him about three?” she smiled apologetically. “Is that him just over there?” Courtney gestured to the conference room. “Umm…yes. I’ll call him and let him know you are here officer. She picked up the phone and dialled the conference room number and Jamie held up a finger to his clients before answering the phone. “Mr Fischer, I’m sorry to disturb you but there is a police officer her to speak to you.” She nodded and turned to Courtney and put he hand over the mouth piece. “He asked if it can wait.” Courtney shook her head sadly. “Oh.” The secretary spoke to Jamie again. “I think it’s rather urgent. I’m sorry. Yes sir. I can do that. Of course sir.” She hung up the phone and looked up at Courtney. He won’t be a moment. I’ll take you to his office.” “Thank you, that would be good.” Courtney followed the secretary up the steps to Mr Fischer’s office where she was offered a chair to sit down. When the secretary was gone Courtney relaxed. She was alone for a moment, she could just be herself. There were footsteps climbing the stairs outside the office. She needed him to see someone else, at least for now. The door opened and Jamie Fischer came in and looked at the police officer. He was a man in his mid thirties. He carried himself with confidence and always dressed fashionably. “Sorry to keep you waiting, I just had to take care of the people downstairs.” He flashed a grin and gestured back towards the stairs. “Some of our bigger clients.” He walked behind his desk and took a seat in the expensive leather chair. “What can I do for you officer?” Courtney grinned evilly. “I believe you have something for me.” Jamie frowned. Courtney chuckled and changed Jamie’s perception of her. Now he saw a beautiful and dangerous woman sitting with long slender legs crossed. “It’s… It’s you.” Jamie nervously shifted in his chair. “That’s right.” Courtney kept smiling demurely. “Mirage. They told me that you would come.” Jamie found it hard to swallow. He was genuinely scared. He had heard the stories about this woman. There was a rumour that his father even hired her to make certain people disappear and to acquire evidence from the prosecution in some big trials. But that was two years ago. “And do you have what they asked for?” Jamie Fischer nodded vigorously and pulled open his desk draw. He then drew out four manila folders. And held them up before laying them on the desk. Courtney rose from her chair and came to sit on the desk and inspect the folders. “Are you sure this is everything?” “Umm… Yes. That’s everything they had. I checked personally.” Courtney nodded slowly as she flipped through the pages. These were the court records of her employer and associates as well as herself. Her mission was to acquire the files and make she Mr Fischer didn’t speak to another soul. “Thank you Mr Fischer. I’m pleased. And my employer would be pleased.” Jamie nodded and gave a half smile as he wiped his brow. “Unfortunately your wife killed you.” Courtney smiled at him again. Jamie was confused. He sat up in his chair. “What? Is that some sort of story we are going to use?” It didn’t make sense. “No not a story.” Courtney picked up the photo of Mrs Fischer off the desk and gazed at it for a long moment. Jamie was looking toward the door, thinking about escaping from this woman. “Look Mirage, I…” The beautiful brunette sitting on the desk had become his wife and she glared at him with malicious intent. “No, no, no… Not her. You can’t. Not like this. I have children. Please!” Tears were running down his cheeks and he was openly sobbing and shaking his head. “It’s not an attractive look for you Jamie…” Courtney grinned. She pressed and chloroform soaked handkerchief to his mouth and nose. Jamie sobbed and squeezed his eyes closed. “Pathetic excuse for a man.” She Courtney drew one of the long thing chrome-steel spikes from her thigh holster. She chuckled as she pushed the long pin down though the base of his neck into his chest where in punctured his heart. Then she jabbed it again and again a his heart till it would be full of irreparable holes, then he would bleed internally. “Thank you, Mr Fischer. Your services are appreciated.” Courtney wiped Jamie’s blood on his clean white shirt and leapt off the table and gathered the files. She slid the long pin back into her thigh holster and took a deep breath. She chuckled to herself as she walked out of the office projecting the guise of Jamie Fischer’s wife to the minds of all who took notice. She marched back out of the building the same way she came in: the front door.
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