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The Eagle Serves No Banner, The Rats Invade Though (EP: TWO)

Fox

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A STORY OF HYPOCRISY, RISE AND FALL, AND POSSIBLY RESURRECTION
- EPISODE: PROLOGUE -

"For what values are worth..."

29th August 2007 - 2351
Somewhere in Los Santos


The sun had just set behind the hills surrounding, what some call the city of angels, the city that blisters with, what some may call life. The surroundings giving off the heat they had absorbed during the day, only to now heat up the night sky. Shadowy figures and outlines moving on the walls, making one feel as if they were in a horror movie with sweat running down their spine. Not out of fear though, not out of any emotion whatsoever.

Los Santos, a city that has seen everything, a city that was once hailed to be the most liveable city in the world. Somewhere in the United States some institute or paper thought it was worth that title, though the real truth, is always found somewhere in-between.

Sounds of sirens fill the night sky, the neighborhoods are as usually lit up by the so well known play of colors. Red, Blue, Blue, Red, White, Red, Blue. Helicopters droning out any thought from above, one could think they are in Fahrenheit 451, and sounds are getting all mixed up together. Nothing is clear but the shine of the ever re-iterating scheme of colors... A beam of light focuses on a shadowy figure in front of the many estates. The illumination allows for closer examination, the shadowy figure is not a grown man nor woman. A child, maybe 16 years old, definitely still in Highschool, a gun pointed to his head, mumbled lines escape his mouth but are watered down to nothingness under the sound of helicopters, under the sound of the sirens and the yelling of the people surrounding the estate.

The child, as if it was a play suddenly has a beautiful symphony of color coming from his head, though this is no play it was clear the child had just pulled the trigger on a gun to take his life in front of the people, that where supposed to help him.

The protectors had arrived, at least as such it was later proclaimed in press issues. The reality was different, as is always the case, the Los Santos Police Department hailed for its many achievements was but a silhouette of the picture painted by the media. The protagonist of our story was part of this husk and saw many people before and after the child's death take their lives, or have their lives taken. How the situation came to be you may ask? The child was simply in the wrong place, at the wrong time. Brothers in blue saw a figure of his likes attempting to violently enter a house just 250 feet down the street, called in support when the suspect started fleeing and surrounded the house he had supposedly entered.

Though what many did not know about this situation, nor the protagonist at the time, was that the child had been violated in his household before and was just enjoying the night before the sirens and helicopters came. The suspect? In fact the suspect, as found in the aftermath had long fled the scene and was nowhere to be seen. Screaming had been heard coming from the house, the parents ordinary people one might think, a nurse in the hospital and a clerk at the grocery store, living in a rather dangerous area with a son currently in highschool. The screaming continued, so the brothers in blue called in for the specialists to arrive on scene in no time. Lucky for everyone, a patrol had just passed the border of the neighborhood and was exceedingly fast on scene.

Four men clad in a menacing uniform unmounted their tank like beast, in fact it was a mere police vehicle with additional armor but for many it looked like knights unmounted their golden and shiny horses. These men clad in their menacing black and blue uniform, could not have been identified if it were not for our protagonist had been one of them. One, exceedingly muscular, so much in fact that bystanders were able to realize that, another with his balaclava down around his neck with a cigarette in the edges of his mouth, another one, relatively small but of a bulky build and last but not least our protagonist with relatively little noteworthy about him, other than the insignia on his sleeve and the "TEAM LEADER" on his vest.

He had been through too many of these situations, so did his colleagues. None did feel anything when dismounting the vehicles, the usually chitchat started about another home intrusion turned hostage situation and such all while maintaining little to no actual emotion. The motions more robotic than human, the talk empty of any substance, the usual for them really. Swiftly the weapons had been prepared, each of the operators had their own weapon at his disposal, the muscular one used a heavily customized M16A4 with a custom barrel (4 to 6 inches longer than regular), a custom mounting mechanism for a grip that seemingly was inverted for the purpose, an ACOG sight with a red-dot mounted on top and some sort of cloth wrapped around the stock. The one with the cigarette, grabbed his custom Heckler and Koch MP5-K from the backseat, it being left mostly untouched had it not been for the larger than usual magazine, the bulky one made his way to the back to grab what appeared to be a heavily customized M14 rifle. The protagonist, let's call him Fox, looked around the scene calmly with the tactical glasses neatly tucked to the front of his helmet and the balaclava around his face, covering it almost entirely let alone the eyes.

He reached inside the vehicle to retrieve a heavily modified Heckler and Koch M416 Assault Rifle, featuring a shorter than usual barrel, a foregrip with ground standoffs, a flashlight and laser combo, a magazine larger than usual, 60 rounds instead of 30, a custom made stock and a EOTech Holo Sight. Having equipped themselves, Fox gathered the troops, the muscular one we shall refer to as Biggy, the one with the cigarette as Smokey and the bulky one as Eagle.

Together they made their way towards the on scene supervisor to gather the needed details before conducting this operation, as soon as they reached the supervisor, as if that were the cue, the helicopters arrived at about 500 feet above the ground, their engines roaring in the night sky, drowning anything what might had been left of emotion or sense. The scene dimly lit before suddenly became illuminated by search lights from the helicopters and all other police vehicles on scene, the house lit up that one might think it will catch fire sooner or later with how many watts of power shun upon it.

The operators had gotten their briefing. Eagle made his way towards an SUV and in one motion made his way onto the top of it, only to lay down shortly after and deploying his rifle. Biggy and Smokey flanked Fox whilst they walked towards the police vehicle closest to the house. Cover they thought was unnecessary in the situation described to them by the scene supervisor, the suspect was believed to be not armed with a gun, so why bother going from cover to cover? That was a waste of time and they had better to do than deal with another crazy man holding hostages.

Fox looked at Biggy and signalled towards the cruiser, they had done this so often together they needed not to communicate with words anymore, signs, some times simple body language was enough. Biggy yanked the microphone from the cruiser's and started rattling down the usual lines you hear in situations like this... "You are surrounded, come out and nothing will happen to you." "We are here to help you!" "We are the LSPD, we are only trying" to make you obey and... err "to protect and to serve..."

It was basically a movie, the shadowy figure described from before left the building, gun pointing to the head. This made the adrenaline rush, blood pressure rose, thinking was not an option it was all training and instinct now. Fox and Smokey took aim with their weapons pointing towards the head of the suspect, Eagle somewhere in the back surely readied his rifle too, he only needed one bullet for him it was a waste to load an entire magazine.

They saw him move his lips, they thought they heard him say something but the droning of the helicopters above made it all into one continuous stream of noise. Fox almost in perfect choreography with Smokey moved his right hand from the grip towards the trigger, whilst unconsciously controlling his every breath and move.

A little bit more to the ground so that the hood of the cruiser covers him more, a little more to the right so that he has a better shot, breath in, breath out, synced to perfection with the heartbeat. Eyes focused on the figure, watching it's every move like a predator examines his prey. Any motion of the figure that was not one of surrender or anticipated would be followed by blasts of gunfire. Though that motion never came, not in the way they expected it anyway. Biggy tried talking with the figure, tried talking him into putting the gun down, though there was no actual attempt made it was all fun and games for them, they were here to neutralize threats not take captives and as said, they had better things to do.

The figure made a motion and Eagle pulled the trigger, faster than either Fox or Smokey had expected though little reaction from their bodies came when the shot rang through the neighborhood and the all too familiar faint glint of red and that oh so beautiful figure it caused appeared. Biggy jumped a little, when the shot rang though that was about as much emotion as he had ever shown. The figure collapsed to the ground, Fox and Smokey moved in to secure. The situation was wrapped up in a matter of minutes for them, it didn't concern them or the LSPD what caused this, what happened after, or whether the shot was justified or not, another criminal off the street for them...

... after all their motto was not to protect and to serve, but rather "obey and you survive if we will it".

Biggy, Eagle, Fox and Smokey returned to their vehicle and left the scene. It was about the end of their shift under the Special Weapons and Tactics Team of the Metropolitan Division of the Los Santos Police Department. They soon resumed chitchatting about women, cars and guns again, little concern was on their mind when entering the garage, they knew only paper work was waiting for them and then it was the end of their shift and beers were soon to be had.

Paperwork was filed by the other three operators and then handed over to Fox to verify it and put it into the archives. The SWAT locker room was separated from the others, as the squads usually sat in there discussing plans and holding ad-hoc briefings for situations, though at around zero dark thirty no one was around, the next shift had already left for their patrol, and so it was only the four of them. Getting rid of their uniforms and equipment and switching to a more casual look. All four of them preferred to dress in leisure like clothing, though they knew for where they were about to head they required business'esque attire. So they brought out their best guns for the night that was yet to follow.

As soon as all of them were ready they headed for the garage. The garage was no less full or empty as always, though they knew where their vehicle for the night was parked. They strolled around the corner and gazed upon the metallic black sedan with 20 inch BBS rims and four exhausts signifying some sort of engine life. Fox, who's vehicle that was, sat down on the driver's seat, whilst Smokey as usually flanked him on his right sitting down on the passenger seat, with Biggy and Eagle taking their seats in the back. Having inserted the key into the ignition, the engine roared to live, a true V8 had been sleeping in the husk of the vehicle that now suddenly sprang to life with an aggressive roar, as if it was about to attack the next person it saw.

Mission Row's Police Department is not the busiest area of the city, but during this night it was quieter than ever so the car could have been heard from miles away. Soon their faces were illuminated by the street lamps, painting the interior and their surroundings in a fade orange. They were making their way to an exclusive club in the upper parts of Richman, they had reasons to celebrate after all.

Arriving at their desired location they parked up their car and headed for the inside, the bouncers quickly making way for them as the badges flashed in the artificial green light created by the lights pointing towards the entrance. Inside they were greeted with a packed dance floor, men and women in a sort of trance to the music that was blaring from the speakers. Some of them barely clothed, though again that was of no interest to them, they headed for VIP area to be let in quickly and escorted to a separate area behind a one way window. The atmosphere was different, the smell was different, for newcomers it must have felt like an entirely different world, though for them it was not the first nor last time they entered this area.

A table which was already occupied by 16 other people was their final destination of the night. They dropped their serious monikers and started grinning, as the faces they saw were all too familiar. Their family, or what they considered their family had gathered at the table to celebrate together. Things were to be great for them, especially for Fox as he had two things to celebrate. One being the promotion to Sergeant with the Los Santos Police Department, the other his engagement. At the age of 28 he was among the youngest Sergeants the Department had seen, having entered the force with 22 years. Though it makes sense to say at this point, his soon to be wife was not there, as was clear when several women appeared from a hidden doorway to surround the newcomers.

They generously were escorted to the table and had just taken a seat when a voice too familiar to all who had gathered here rang through the room, as if it were magic, the music became quiet as the voice rang out. Praises were given and received, laughs were had, drugs were consumed, women were... well that is not what this is about.

Somehow Fox managed to come home to his apartment in Vespucci and survive the night without ending up in hospital from what was close to an overdose of basically everything. Tomorrow was his day off, the plan was to lounge at home and do nothing for the rest of the day and maybe go shopping with the soon to be wife.

For what values are we lack all...

To be continued.
 
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Hound

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This was a really good read, man. Looking forward to following this as your character progresses.
 

Erty

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Scott Miller, Clementine Galloway

Fox

Head of Property Management
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Los Santos Police Department
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A STORY OF HYPOCRISY, RISE AND FALL, AND POSSIBLY RESURRECTION
- EPISODE: ONE -

"The Eagle has claws..."

23th September 2007 - 0703
Vespucci Beach Los Santos


The sun had rose above Blaine County and Los Santos long ago, the weather as usual around this time of the year was clear and little to nothing obstructed the sun for burning down onto the streets of the city it shines upon so often. Los Santos too began waking up as cars poured onto the streets. The main streets of Vespucci, as per usual, were slowly getting filled up by cars and soon there would be traffic jams all around. Even though, it was a Sunday the people still had to get places, work, shopping, the beach, or out into the county.

The sea was as ever beautiful, one of the only features that really never changes and can be considered objectively beautiful. Blue as ever, reflecting the sun every time a wave formed only to be deformed into a little food upon hitting the beach. The canals of the Vespucci area slowly started getting busy as well, as the residents turned seaward to enjoy a few hours out there on their boats.

Fox had just waken up from his slumber, as it was the second day he had off after having worked a 5 day, 12 hour per, shift. Getting out of bed was not the easiest part, he enjoyed sleeping so much so that some times he managed to sleep for 18 or more hours. The apartment he had awoken in was rented from a couple and was enough to satisfy the needs of a two head household. Featuring two rooms, one being the bedroom and the other being the living room and kitchten. The style of it was modern, post 2000 style, hence most of the furniture was kept in tune with it. Some might call it bleak, others may call it simplistic, the colors used were mainly black and white with different gradients. The most outstanding feature of the apartment however was, the balcony overlooking one of the many canals in Vespucci.

As had become routine Fox left the bedroom, leaving his fiancee enjoy the rest of her sleep, and quietly closing the door. One would imagine a SWAT operative not being able to be quiet, not after the first story anyway, though it was still possible and was an asset that was utilized quite a lot. Having successfully managed to not wake her up by closing the door, he headed for the kitchen, mind void of any sort of thought, turned on the coffee machine and the radio. The machine jumped to life first, before the radio started playing Radio Los Santos. To Fox's hatred as was already habit in the morning, the coffee machine required water, more coffee and a cleaning before being operational, he knew that he had thought about doing it yesterday though decided against it and thought it wise to leave it be, yet now he regretted it, being almost incapable of staying awake without a coffee in the morning.

Radio Los Santos played their usual morning show, with the presenters jumping on every now and then to talk about what had happened during the night and continue their program. Eventually Fox stopped staring at the coffee machine with disgust and self-hatred and got to fulfill the needs it required of him. He pressed on the button to finally have the machine make his coffee and it sprang to work, pouring the black coffee into the mug. As was usual for machines then, they were not quiet by any means yet somehow they were non-intrusive with their sounds, thus after the machine was done Fox listened for any sort of movement or sound coming from the bedroom. It remained quiet, so he was able to continue his usual morning routine. He proceeded to head towards the balcony with the mug in his right hand. The door was opened and immediately the fresh sea air filled his nostrils, as well as the room behind him. It was relatively cool for the time of year with barely reaching 70° Fahrenheit so he decided to keep the door open. The balcony for the overall size of the housing block he lived in was kept spacious, allowing for 4 chairs and a table to be placed on it, as well as having multiple plants Fox struggled to identify every day on it, the general consensus regarding the plants in his mind was that they all were either some sort of tree or flowers, he cared little about the particular name nor what made them different from each other but kept them in shape regardless. He walked over to the chair against the wall window that allowed the living room to be flooded with light if the shutters were pulled up and sat himself down.

The faint but yet audible sound of the radio could still be heard, as he looked towards the skyline of Los Santos reminiscing about the past few weeks. Two months ago he was promoted to Sergeant and his bonus had just been sent to the bank account, it was nothing of note worth, $10,000.00, it would not further the progress towards a house in the outskirts of Los Santos, or maybe in Vinewood but it was something at least. Some sort of recognition by the department for his effort. Further back, he thought about his time in the police academy and his first months as a rookie on the beat.

Paired with a senior officer, who was part of the unit investigating fellow brothers. He cared nothing for him, nor was the officer really something to set an example with, at least for Fox at the time of writing this. The patrols were usually boring, in upper class districts, the most action he had gotten during his rookie year was a pursuit of a local thief that ended with the thief being apprehended after five minutes, since she was incompetent enough to ruin her tire on a curb. Things started taking shape with the regular promotion to Police Officer II, he was finally free of constant oversight and lectures of what to do and when. With it came the assignment to the Downtown area, which meant he'd be able to go from South of Los Santos up to Vinewood and back without overstepping his jurisdiction.

It had always been on his mind that joining the LSPD and with it the Special Weapons and Tactics team was his ulterior motive, so the opportunity came as it usually comes that the team started looking for potentials and ran a few trail sessions. Long story short, he had made it into SWAT school and passed that too. His buds came along too, Biggy, Eagle, Smokey and him were paired together in most of the assignments so they grew close and eventually became friends even in their off time.

The blaring sound of the breaking news broadcast interrupted his train of thought, for some reason all the stations in San Andreas found it necessary to play an obnoxious horn sound when breaking news were to be aired. Fox looked around, having been sitting on the balcony for a good while now, he assumed it had been thirty or forty minutes. He stood up from his chair and walked back inside to overhear the reporter talking about a radical shift in the LSPD. Fox' eyes immediately widened and blood pressure rose as he sat down the mug with coffee on the counter of the kitchen. The reporter suddenly shut up and a familiar voice came from the radio:

"With great regret I inform you of my departure from the Los Santos Police Department. The scandals that have and will in the future be exposed, have led me to realize that under my term as Chief of Police this department has rotted away. It is full of corruption and cares little for the populace. Henceforth, I was motivated to step-down by the Mayor and the City Council and hand over my duties and responsibilities to [CENSORED]."

Having heard the name of the new Chief of Police, Fox looked around warily. His fiancee still hadn't left the bedroom, presumably still sleeping, he looked for an opportunity to sit down, get rid of the anxiety that just shot up to his head, everything started to fade. The new Chief of Police hailed from a small squad of snitches within the department that worked against everything Fox, no the entire Metropolitan Division was currently doing. Back then it was called the Rat Squad, the stories surrounding them had been nothing more than pure treachery. They worked not for the department but the attorney general and the Mayor, the corrupted bastard, himself.

A thought started setting in, whilst Fox did not explicitly committed any sort of crime, at least not on the record, there had been situations that per law and per procedure should have, no must have been handled differently. The previous Chief did not care for that, he was after the pay that was all, that's why the department was allowed to freely do whatever they wanted. Surely there were guys in the department that would appreciate the change, though Fox? Fox was not one of them. His entire existence was at risk if the new Chief was going to do what he anticipated and that would not go over well.

As soon as the thought had been completed, his phone started ringing. It was in the bedroom however. He jumped up from the chair he had settled at the dinner table, and ran into the bedroom, busting the door open, his fiancee staring at him with wide open eyes, wonder what the fuck was just going now, as Fox usually never ran to his mobile phone nor cared for it when it was his off days. Not paying any attention to her he ripped the phone from the charger, and ran back outside towards the balcony, on his way there grabbing the pack of cigarettes that was left lying there for two weeks.

He looked at the phone, as to see whether it was possessed by the devil or not, the name of the incoming caller was a friend though. It was the Commanding Officer of Metro, so he pressed the answer button, quickly replied with "give me a hot minute", with his hands shaking he was barely able to get a cigarette from the pack nor light it but somehow he still managed it. He was still full of anxiety, fear, and he just felt as if the world was neigh the end.

He put the phone to his right ear and started talking, "Hey... Yeah I am fine... No... No... No... Nothing of that has been left Jack... There is nothing that I know of that can be traced to us... Yes I am sure... FUCK I MADE SURE OF IT ALRIGHT... No fuck the bullets could be from anyone, we use standard issue and no one has access to our rifles... Yeah I will be there in noon." The conversation ended with that, it was clear to any observer that something was off. Sophie his fiancee approached Fox, looking up to him with the sincerest look of concern and asked him what was wrong. He thought of an answer that would not compromise her, so he simply referred to... The Eagle has Claws...

After everything settled, with Fox wide awake and Sophie being relatively calmed down again they settled for breakfast. The breakfast was quiet as neither of them was in the mood to talk, not Fox especially, he kept glaring at his phone more than looking at what he was eating or drinking. The wind seemingly picked up a little and a fresh breeze came from the opened door and the sun now shun into the living room engulfing it with a yellow taint, since the shutters of the wall window had been opened. Before finishing up breakfast, Fox looked at Sophie once more and set to say something but she shook her head. She understood that his line of work required to keep secrets more so than anything and that anything he would say right now could eventually compromise her. She generally cared very little for what was happening during the work hours, she was busy herself training to become a lawyer at a firm, she just wanted to see Fox come home well every day after his shift ended, or at least wake up to him being around.

Fox stood up from the table and walked into the bedroom to get some clothes ready for the upcoming drive out to Blaine County. He opened the wardrobe and started looking for an entire that would be comfortable for a two hour drive there and back. Looking through something fell from a pocket or somewhere, it was a lanyard that fell out and onto the floor. He quickly looked at it, before picking it up and stashing it back into where it approximately came from.

It was now 10:30AM, Fox was standing in front of his car ready to drive out into the county to arranged meeting place. He got into the car, started it up and revved the engine and got onto the road towards Blaine County. The radio instead of being tuned to Los Santos FM, was tuned to LS News. The resignation of the Chief was all over, it was a Sunday it probably had awoken everyone especially when you announce it at 8'ish in the morning. It was played over and over and discussions about the corruption of the LSPD were broadcast live. He just needed to hear something, at least maybe the new Chief was going to hold a press conference himself and announce something, he just needed something to reassure him.

2 hours later, 12:45AM somewhere in Blaine County, a field with a barn that could literally be taken from an old western. It was no different to the surroundings, so it would not standout at all. Inside though, inside was different. No farm equipment, no hay, nothing just bare ground and in the middle a circle of men and women. In the middle of it was Fox, the group that had gathered here was the leadership of the Metro Division with the CO Jack talking.

"... someone in our midst has been leaking information to the rest of the department. They know what we have been doing for greater part of the last year. I am certain all of you here did your best to remove any traces of involvement, and as per my order it can only fall back onto I. Regardless there is a leak that must be stopped"

Everyone in the barn knew exactly what was meant by that. Someone had been betraying them, as the evidence brought forth during this meeting clearly indicated that everyone had been compromised and that the new Chief very well knew who to go after to exterminate the root of corruption. Laying low was not an option anywhere, the reports were meaningless regardless of how much fabrication or tampering could be done to clear all of them out. It was on them now to find the snitch and eradicate him or her. Fox had been part of the upper echelon of the Metropolitan Division for a good while, he was on the good side of Jack and the rest of the leaders were comfortable with him around. The plan in situations such as these was to appoint a figurehead and have him or her take the blame, for we all know if you cut off one head of the Hydra, two more will take its place. However, this was different. All evidence pointed directly at everyone in the barn.

Fox himself had been compromised apparently with his addiction to cocaine and overstepping his authorities. He knew it that it must be someone who had access to the exclusive lounge in the club they frequent but that access was granted to anyone in SWAT. So the circle of suspects was not necessarily small.

7:45PM the sun started setting and the it illuminated the county in red, almost bloodish color. All the leaders were still gathered in the barn, when their pagers all went off simultaneously. The code of conduct in such places for them was that only Jack himself would look at his pager to find out what it was about. Everyone staring at the Commanding Officer, saw his eyes widen as he opened his mouth everyone was already anticipating the worst...

"Bank Robbery, Bank of Los Santos tower, downtown. 20 casualties, 5 of them officers, the rest civilians or employees of the bank. 5 heavily armed suspects wearing advanced armor. SWAT required"

As he read it out loud, a small sigh of relief could be heard around the room. However, this presented the next issue, some the leaders currently present were supposed to be on duty and in the city. None of them were however, only team members had been left. They could hold their own but there was little hope without organization from them that the situation would clear up and if worst come to worst their situation be compromised even more. Jack gave the sign and everyone started running towards their cars and raced back to the city. Luckily enough for them, as some of the people present arrived with police vehicles they were able to bypass most of the traffic with the lights and sirens rushing towards the city. What previously had taken about 2 hours 30 minutes, had just taken them 1 hour 50 minutes at full speed.

A convoy of sixteen vehicles pulled into the garage of the Mission Row police department. Fox ran towards his locker and reached for his radio. He managed to grab a hold of it without tearing apart the rest of the uniform and called for his team. Biggy responded, "oi we are on scene already, where the fuck have you and the rest of the dipshits been?" Fox didn't respond to the question but answered instead "we are on our way". The words left his mouth without thinking, though instinctively he knew this was the worst possible timing. He was nowhere near ready enough to handle a situation with his team right now, nor were the others. Their minds were all clouded by what had transpired throughout the day, and Fox knew his team had also heard it and probably was as uncertain as he was.

Situations like these usually do not require much thinking by any of them, it was what they train for every other week, it was their job however it would be different this time. Getting into the gear, was no more difficult than any other time, grabbing his rifle felt no different. Pulling up the balaclava over his face, putting on the tactical vest with TEAM LEADER on the back, felt no different, though the entire vibe in the room with the rest of the team leaders, platoon leaders and divisional leaders was different. It was as if there had just appeared a rift between all of them, no one was talking about tactics or how to handle the situation. Glares and stares were exchanged, they knew someone here was a rat.

Fox reached for the magazines of his rifle in the locker and counted them. Six additional in the vest... Hmm, seems about right he thought before grabbing one more and putting it into the weapon and pulling the repeater. There now was a bullet ready to be fired in the rifle, he lifted the rifle up and aimed at a spot in his locker, looking through the sight as he did every so often. It didn't feel different, well it did now he was thinking instead of doing.

Jack shouted for everyone to gather and they quickly went over the assignments, Fox' team was part of Romeo Six, so he was under the direct command of Jack and his assistants. Everyone in the locker room moved out from there and headed towards the garage, the run felt longer for all of them, at least that was what Fox assumed, he felt like decades went by till they reached their vehicles. Black, unmarked, armored sedans and SUVs. Everyone mounted their usual vehicle and they flew off towards the scene.

Meanwhile night had fallen over Los Santos, it was as usual. Shadowy figures all around, lights going on and out, though the roads were empty even though it was barely nine o'clock in the evening. They went up to the main street connecting Mission Row and Downtown and flicked on their sirens and lights, Fox was used to not driving though this was not driving anymore. This was like a ride in a helicopter. Blasting through the streets of Los Santos exceeding 120 miles per hour, he felt like he was in a movie, the lights kept flashing and sirens kept blaring, every time they crossed an intersection it felt as if the car would take off into the sky any second and all this would be over. However, it never came to be. They arrived at the first perimeter guarded by normal patrol officers and were quickly let through, they had to pass 2 more before arriving in front of the Bank of Los Santos tower.

Everyone got out from the vehicle, Fox didn't need his goggles yet they were still mounted to the top of his helmet, he reached for his right ear and pressed onto the side of it and began talking: "This is Fox... Biggy, Eagle, Smokey where are you and what have you got, I want the status update in the order of names, give me your weapons and location." As nothing was off, the rollcall happened and as if they all knew none of them had equipped their usual gear but brought along assault rifles. The location of the rest of the team was south of the entrance, so Fox headed over there as quickly as he could, having to weave in between all of the people running around to do their tasks and cars parked all over.

Usually he was accustomed to the sounds of situations like these, helicopters above so loud that no one would possibly be able to think, shouting, lights flashing. Though while walking, he always found time to think, what if after this I get arrested? What if the snitch is part of my team, I'll have to take the blame from all the others? What if they think I am the snitch? What will happen to Sophie and I?

Eventually he made it over to his team and they exchanged quick greetings. The status update received over the radio for all of them hear was: "The invaders were not after money, they cared little for it, they just wanted to see if they could do the same the LSPD had done to them, they are doing it for the joy of it. They are barricaded on the 5th floor and have let anyone below it go, but anyone in the offices above them had been rounded up into main hall on the fifth floor. Disobedient hostages were simply shot. They want the LSPD to surrender their right of enforcing the law to them." Fuck, Fox thought, exactly what we need right now a bunch of morons trying to get rid of us. "Listen up everyone, Romeo one, two, three, four, five and six teams are going to move in from the south side and clear every floor till the fourth, at the fourth rendezvous with Romeo seven to twelve on the fourth floor, before moving up together into the fifth floor and take out these motherfuckers." That was the order, that was the game plan.

Fox looked at his friends, Biggy nodded, Eagle shrugged as usual and Smokey already aiming his rifle towards the entry. Fox looked further and saw the other teams readying themselves, as the teams started moving Fox and his team fell into formation and followed the other teams into the building. His brain still hammering with questions and thoughts, they eventually made their way to fourth floor. As anticipated all of the previous four floors were void of any human life, they did not lie then. Shots rang through the building, seemingly another casualty, no movement from anyone came when the shot rang, the teams had all met up and they were an overwhelming force of close to fifty operatives.

Eventually came the order through the radio to move up to the fifth floor, supposedly filled to the brink with hostages and mixed in there a group of maniacs. Or were the attackers really the sane people and it was them who were the maniacs? They teams moved up to the fifth floor and split off into different directions to cover all entrances and clear out the rest of the floor. The order to breach the main hall came and the prepared breaching charges went off... and everything turned black.
 
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Fox

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A STORY OF HYPOCRISY, RISE AND FALL, AND POSSIBLY RESURRECTION
- EPISODE: TWO -

"Rats"

16th March 2018 - 0930
Mission Row Police Headquarter Internal Affairs Group Offices

SERVICE; REVERENCE; COMMITMENT; INTEGRITY; RESPECT; QUALITY; the duty the brothers in blue carry weights a lot. All for nothing in the end, as an end to crime is nowhere near to be seen. The duty to serve the country, county and city is an honor not many can experience. The duty is to protect the weak, to serve those in need and some times it takes a rat to achieve exactly that.

The office is dim, lights are on but dimmed to a degree that they are barely giving off any light, the shutters are down, the only light that is being emitted stems from the screens of the various computers currently running. The hated symbol on the wall next to the Commanding Officer's office watching over the office. The eagle on the logo, having one eye turned away, the other being ever watchful as it claws onto the badge of the Los Santos Police Department, the five stars ever so golden.

The Commanding Officer's office was lit by the ceiling light and a figure sitting behind the screens could be observed. Marcus Hoffman, a name known by many and hated by ever more people. The head of the Internal Affairs Group, reclined back in his chair looking at the screens in front of him. Brooding over casefiles and briefings that ought to be done. Hoffman was a man in his early forties, wearing is usual glasses that he needed nowadays, accompanied by the now standard business jacket in black, with a white dress shirt and black tie. His jeans were too black, he never felt the urge to use a suits trousers unless it was for official dates, though even then he preferred using the LSPD's parade uniform.

Regardless, he looked around his office for a few moments before standing up from his chair. He focused onto the coffee machine in there and started walking over to it, he poured himself a cup of coffee and strolled out into the empty office, letting his eyes wander from one end to the other whilst taking a sip from the hot coffee. The quietness in the office was the modus operandi, rarely anyone of the full time personnel of IAG would be in here, aside from a few civilian staff which he acknowledged by a few nods towards their general direction.

Most officers that were assigned to IAG would always be on the field and aid their brothers in blue in their daily duties. You'd only find them in the office, without their patrol uniform, if there were investigations to be done. A slight smile passed his lips before he left heading for the hallway of the station. As soon as he opened the door the atmosphere changed drastically, the busyness of the police work caught him immediately, as officers and civilian personnel walked around with archived files or simply having a chat with each other. He minded neither, though he clearly preferred the quietness usually found in the offices dedicated to the Internal Affairs Group.

As he walked through the hallways Hoffman greeted and struck up a few conversations with some of his old friends, before getting to his destination. The board at the side of the wall read Asst. Chief of Police, he didn't bother knocking or checking if someone was in there, it was as casual as if it was his office. He knew the Assistant Chief for years now, and neither took offense when the other entered their offices without announcing their presence previously. He opened the door to find the Assistant Chief looking at his screens, not even acknowledging the presence of another human in the room. Hoffman casually as ever strolled over to the Assistant Chief's meeting table and took a seat there for himself.

Having settled on the chair, he put the cup of coffee down on the table and reached for the wireless keyboard on the table to log onto the computer powering the screen at the wall. After having done so, he turned around in the chair to look for the Assistant Chief, they made eye contact for a few moments before the Chief nodded. He got up from his chair and walked over to the table Hoffman was sitting at. Hoffman extended his right hand for a handshake and the Chief did so as well before they casually shook their hands still having no words exchanged. Hoffman cleared his throat and began to talk in an utterly casual manner: "Here are the statistics of February's incidents involving LSPD personnel..." he grasped the remote on the table to turn on the presenter mode of the PowerPoint his team had prepared.

"We had forty six reports of officer misconduct, and two of civilian staff misconduct. The forty six reports we were able to divide into the usual categories, exonerated, sustained and no misconduct found. Most of the reports... thirty three to be exact we were able to proof to the complainant through our investigations that the officers either acted in accordance to department procedure, thus exonerated, or that we were not able to proof any fault on our side. For seven reports we currently are still investigating the matters, though a guess of mine would be that five of them will be exonerated and the other two might be sustainable and will lead to the necessary actions being taken..."

The PowerPoint flicked to the next slide showing an in-detail report of the seven reports still under investigation and with a course of action for each of them. Hoffman continued speaking:
"The other six reports are reports that involve actions from officers and staff that we had already discovered in last year's November and have already dealt with accordingly, they only are included in this presentation as they were archived in February."

The Chief nodded and allowed Hoffman to explain a few more details. After having finished the presentation, Hoffman turned to face the Chief in his chair, "... overall I would judge this as an utter success on our administration of the Department Brad. Through our combined efforts in the last few years we were able to bring down the number of reports from some thousands per year to a mere eight hundred to a thousand."

"Indeed, we were able to do that. Though I'd rather have none at all..." The Chief replied leaving his answer hanging in the air for a while. A smile passed Hoffman's face before his look returned to the casual, emotionless one. "Of course, though that is neigh impossible. It's natures way of doing things sadly." Hoffman reached for the cup of coffee on the table and took a sip from it, before continuing, "you remember how it was before, this is nothing compared to the past. Regardless, I'll take my leave now and check the city for a bit." Hoffman reached for the keyboard again and logged himself off with a few presses of buttons and looked over to the Chief. "Your checking of the city usually implies, you know of something doesn't it?" "No. I just don't want to forget the roots. Have a good day and I'll meet you in the evening again for a drink or two."

Hoffman had been part of the Command Staff since he had turned thirty five, when he got promoted to Lieutenant and had only recently been elected to be promoted to Captain since the old Commanding Officer of the Internal Affairs Group retired and a spot opened up. He and the Chief exchanged the necessary etiquette and he made his way out of the office, into the ever so busy hallway again.

He looked down onto his left wrist checking the time, it had flown by the presentation took longer than he felt. It was 12:30, basically time for lunch. Hoffman walked down the hallway, going into the IAG offices to put his cup on the tray the cleaning personnel would wash every day, and then headed for the elevator. He walked towards the elevator as someone spoke to him: "Errr... Hello Captain Hoffman." Hoffman stopped and turned to face the person that approached him. He looked at the person and realized it was one of the new recruits, a woman, maybe twenty five years old he had seen her a few times but never bothered to talk with her, he scanned her uniform before looking back at her. "Hello, how can I help you officer?" "Eeehm... I know you are the... the head of IAG. I was wondering if I could help you?" Hoffman unconsciously raised an eyebrow, he was curious what was in her mind. "Follow me, I am headed towards the garage anyway we can discuss this matter in the elevator." The officer nodded and they walked towards the elevator.

For once the elevator was on the second floor, at the ready, so he didn't need to wait for it to arrive. "Thank fuck" he thought to himself, he and the officer entered the elevator and he pressed on the -3 button. The doors closed and he turned towards the officer, "I wonder why you chose to approach me out of anyone in my team for this matter? We usually list our vacancies on the blackboard, and my office times are also published on the intranet." "I... Sorry. I just..." He stopped her from speaking, "You just what? This is not about you getting into IAG at all, I know how this usually goes. I have seen and experienced it ever since being part of the squad. You saw something you were not supposed to see, I suppose, or you just want to get into an unmarked car cruiser for once and possibly drive it?"

"No sir... Eh... Captain I mean... I mean yes but." "Listen rookie, I am not a Captain for shits and giggles. If you are afraid of reporting a senior officer talk to Anderson, if you want your report to be anonymous file one online through the intranet or file one at home and send it to us. I don't have time for this right now, if it's not something urgent that relates to the Department at a grander scale, I'll take my leave." "Sir, yes sir." She replied before lowering her head to the floor, staring at it. Hoffman turned away from her and examined the door of the garage thinking to himself, "Jesus fucking Christ, do they think I am the babysitter of the whole shitshow and am the responsible for each and every complaint? Fuck me, I ought to speak with [REDACTED] about clarifying the report process in the academy or some shit." He snorted as the elevator came to a halt and the "ding" sound rang indicating they had reached the desired floor. "Have a nice day." He said leaving the woman stand in the elevator.

He turned right upon exit and entered the garage. A full line of all black vehicles opened up in front of him, he looked around for a bit before reaching into his pocket to retrieve the key for his vehicle. Beep beep, it made as it unlocked and the indicators flashed quickly. He looked upon the car, a 2018 Dodge Charger, before smiling to himself. "Good that some things never change..." he thought to himself opening the trunk of the car. To light came a custom Heckler & Koch M416 heavily modified similar to the one he used way back in the day, he grabbed the rifle and lifted it up. It was empty so he reached for a magazine stored in the trunk and loaded the weapon, before quickly aiming down sight.

The rifle was returned back into the compartment it was usually stored in and Hoffman shut the trunk, making his way towards the driver seat. He reclined himself into the seat and started the engine, which sprang to life immediately. The roar of an V8 beast filled the lower parts of the garage, he switched the automatic gear into reverse and left the parking spot. Driving up the levels of the garage and finally leaving the garage, he flicked on the lights and sirens for a moment to test them, it was also the indication for the personnel in close vicinity of the station that a police car was about to leave the station. He reached down to the middle aisle and retrieved a small remote to open the gates.

The clock in the car read 12:45AM, he started thinking whether he should grab a snack or something down in Vespucci or rather somewhere in Vinewood. He was cruising down the main road connecting Mission Row with the inner city, passing a few intersection. Before he decided to head towards his favorite bar in west Vinewood to grab a bite to eat.
 
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