‘Five minutes alone’ V

   Tariq’s face lit up with a hint of uncharacteristic pride. “I injected him with a very powerful chemical compound that was originally developed by the CIA. Although it was highly classified we were; …I mean I was able to locate the original formula and synthesize a modified version of it to be even more potent. Under the influence of this powerful hallucinogen, any user would blindly obey the hypnotic directives they receive. I commanded Bashir al Salaam to ambush all of his military divisions and donate all their monetary assets to anti-terrorist charities. With any luck, he will survive long enough to achieve my final directive. To erase all traces of his terrorist organization and then kill himself.”

   “Oh myyyyy! That’s diabolically brilliant, Tariq! May I call you that? You are forcing him to personally destroy everything he has worked for. I love it! It’s the ultimate revenge. Does he know he’s doing it, or is he oblivious to the mind control?”

   “Yes, it is ok for you to call me Tariq. Essentially I’ve reversed his thought process by injecting him with a hybrid version of the drug and deep hypnotic suggestions. With every action he commits against his own troops, he remains convinced of full success and victory. He believes that all of his field commanders and generals are ‘infidels’. He thinks all of his training camp soldiers are ‘the enemy’. In his paranoid mindset, he has infiltrated allied military bases and killed all of the soldiers as they slept. No amount of persuasion or reason from his lieutenants or advisors could convince him otherwise.”

   Gleason grinned at the satisfaction of breaking the case; and also at Albani’s amazing retaliation against the cold-hearted murderer. “Wait a minute though.”; He interrupted. “A few things still don’t add up. How did you get a drug syringe into his cell? According to the official report, you were searched thoroughly. Also, how could you smuggle al Salaam out of the compound? You might be incredibly smart but you don’t have the military resources to get him out. You had help and I know from whom. How long have you and Durant been planning this rogue operation?”

   For the first time since the interview started, Albani was hesitant to speak. “I planned the whole thing myself. Mr. Durant had nothing to do with it. You must have seen his interrogation report. He had his meathead goons to work me over for hours. I’m covered in bruises.”

   Gleason held up his hand in silent protest. “You can dispense with the excuses. I know you are protecting him. Only he could have overlooked a syringe on your person and helped ‘the pious one’ escape. Bashir was probably hiding in Durant’s quarters the whole time. You were meant to cast my suspicion away from the enlisted men on the staff. Meanwhile your little lockdown stunt served two very different purposes. It created just enough doubt to lead me away from fingering the Captain while you loaded up al Salaam’s mind with parasitic directives. Obviously ‘Knuckles and Chuckles’ had to rough you up a little bit to keep up appearances. My question is, did they know? Did lieutenant Kohl and Banks know what was going on? How many others were in on the conspiracy to smuggle him out and set this maverick plan into action?”

   Tariq assured agent Gleason that only he and Captain Durant were involved. Sean decided that Tariq was telling the truth but he had to be certain. He sent his security detail to locate Durant and bring him to the interrogation room. The Captain knew the truth about their plan was out in the open, the minute he saw Albani’s somber face. “The cat’s out of the bag, Captain. You might as well come clean. Mr. Albani tried to shield you but I saw through it.”

   “Regardless of what Tariq might have told you, I am the ‘ringleader’ here.”; Durant offered. “It was all my idea. I had heard tales of the CIA psychotropic mind-control drug years ago but wasn’t sure if it was real, or a just a bureau legend to scare enemies. From the moment we captured al Salaam, I’ve fantasized about unlocking his cell door and beating him within an inch of his life. The thing is, his crimes haven’t directly affected my life. It occurred to me that his terrorist attacks have personally destroyed thousands of families. His victims have far more right to retaliation or vengeance than any of us at the compound. It made me think about the concept of true justice. Then I started researching survivor stories related to our deadly ‘guest of honor’. I found out about Tariq’s horrible loss at the hands of this madman and how he had overcome the tragedy to become a scholar at Harvard. First I reached out to him on a personal level and then I dared to share my secret idea with him. With a little back and forth, he became very receptive to the idea. The bottom line is that it is all my fault. I played on his lingering anger to draw him in.”

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About Bo Bandy

Just a creative soul trapped in a world of cookie-cutter pragmatism...
This entry was posted in Controversial topics, Different Perspectives, Fiction Stories, Future technology, Macabre, Murder, Mystery, Science Fiction, Thriller, Twilight Zone Inspired, Uncategorized, Whimsical. Bookmark the permalink.

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