The door to the limousine opened from the outside onto the rain swept streets of London. A hand reaching out for hers, Raven took it and steeped out onto the red carpet. Socked from the rain, it made a squelching noise as she moved. A young man, dressed in an impressive suit, held an umbrella above her head and led her down the carpet to the main entrance of the embassy hall.
"Invitation please, miss", said another man, in a similar suit to the one who held the umbrella above Raven's head. Judging by his build, and the weapon that was holstered inside his jacket, Raven assumed that he was security. Well trained security too.
Raven slipped into character instantly, smiling sweetly as she handed over the invitation. "Certainly, I think you'll find everything is in order."
While the guard was checking her invitation with a small scanner, another appeared from a small booth and began to pat Raven down for concealed weapons.
"Do I really look like I'm hiding a weapon?" she asked with a slight air of irritation.
"I'm sorry miss; I'm just doing my job."
As the guard finished patting her down, the other handed the invitation back to her and the pressed a small button on a device attached to his belt. Moments later, the door to the embassy opened.
"You may process miss, have a nice evening.
"I'm sure I will", Raven smiled again, and stepped through the doorway. Raven hid her awe well, as she entered the big hall that would hold the evenings "little" get together.
"Now I know why Angelo loves doing stuff like this..."
Raven tried to hide her impatience, she'd been at the embassy for over an hour, and Aldridge had yet to show himself. Considering that the event was being held in his honor, it looked like Travis was going to be a no show.
The embassy hall was enormous, and filled with people from various walks of life. Ambassadors, doctors, business men (along with their escorts), it was a strictly high profile "black tie" event, and it showed.
Raven lifted the glasses that were resting on her face, so that she could rub the bridge of her nose. The small earpiece she was wearing suddenly squawked to life.
"You know, I was watching that." Daniel's voice came through.
"I'm not wearing these so you can perv Daniel, any word on Aldridge?"
"I intercepted some mobile chatter; apparently he was stuck in traffic. Police communication in the area backs that up, as there were reports of an accident on a bridge along the route we... I mean... you, suspected he would take. And hey, I'm not perving, that's a state of the art camera I put in those glasses."
Raven smiled softly, taking a drink from one of the young waitresses, and sipped it slowly.
"It can store two hours of video data in its buffer, record in normal, night vision, thermal, and it transmits it all back here to the manor." Daniel continued, sounding truly offended.
"You're just disappointed that you couldn't figure out how to make it have an X-ray mode." Raven retorted, holding in the laughter. Daniel was easy bait. "Keep the comm. Chatter down, we can't afford to be discovered."
Moments later, Raven heard the clearing of a throat behind her, followed by an unmistakably male voice.
"Excuse me miss, I don't believe we've met"
Raven turned road, and had to suppress the urge to reach for her sword, despite knowing that she had left it in the limousine.
"Travis Aldridge, the world's leading developer of bio technology." Raven smiled as Travis took her hand and placed a small kiss upon the back of it.
"I feel I'm at a loss miss, it seems you know so much about me, and yet I don't even know your name." Travis said, in a way that only a creepy slime ball could.
"Oh, he's good." Daniels voice came through, clear as day on the earpiece Raven was wearing. Luckily she was the only one who could hear it.
"Whitechapel, Emily Whitechapel. I'm an attaché assigned to the embassy." Raven blushed as she smiled, the act was flawless.
"Well, Miss Whitechapel, it has been a pleasure meeting you. I look forward to our paths crossing again in the future." Travis looked up and down Raven's body in such a way it made her skin crawl. It was like he was undressing her in his mind, even though the slinky black dress that she had on left little to the imagination.
"Oh, the pleasure was all mine, Mr Aldridge" Raven smiled again as Travis kissed the back of her hand and left to mingle with other members of the crowd, with a small contingent of guards.
"What?! That's it?? I thought you were going to lead him away and kill him???" Daniel sounded like he was going to die of shock.
"Review the recordings, specifically the thermal one. I think you'll agree that a mobile phone that doubles as a silenced gun won't do the trick."
"Hey, the bullets on that thing will go through steel, it took me ages to get it..." Daniel paused. "Oh... we're fucked"
Raven sighed, "This is why I prefer to work alone..."
----To Be Continued----