What Comes Around Ch 22 bit – Exfiltrate

“Someone,” Haughn eyed the room at large, “just managed to take a flamethrower to the pit of copperheads I’ve been trying to sneak up on with nets for the past four years.”

Why does everybody look at me when someone says stuff like that?

“Mr. Ryans,” Haughn said dryly. “Somehow I knew you’d be up to your ears in this.”

“My son is a minor,” Richard started, shoulders thrown back and ready for a fight.

“I know. I know,” Haughn said tiredly. “But if it hadn’t been for both the Ryans and a certain landfill, I never would have known where to start looking. And… I can’t thank Anne, anymore.”

Alan sat up straight, meeting the man’s gaze no matter how tired he was. “She wasn’t sure we could trust you, you know.”

“From what I’ve found out about Agent Biegen so far, I can’t blame her,” Haughn said bluntly. “And from other informants. I caught a certain young man called Pablo taking his cousin out of a Shays-owned facility. He didn’t want to talk, but she apparently made him an offer he couldn’t refuse. Something about a rescued unicorn.” That drew a smile from the agent, tired or not; but it vanished again with his next words. “Apparently the Shays have ways of… making people forget certain things.”

Against his back, Alan felt Maria stiffen. He drew a breath, and nodded. “It’s why we had to find everything with a paper trail. The kids tried to help. But they couldn’t remember who hurt them.”

“Well, my office and Child Services now has at least two dozen illegal kids and three missing locals in the exact same boat,” Haughn said bluntly. “We may not know what happened but we can at least show it did happen.” He paused. “If I can keep it from happening to my agents.”

“It shouldn’t work if you’re not in the same room,” Ja’far said clinically. “And not at all if you’ve searched them well. They apparently need some chemical help to pull it off.”

“Thank you,” Haughn said gruffly. “That’s what I needed to know.” He stared at his younger agent. “Domingo. Take your family and get out of town.”


“This isn’t a request.”

Alan tensed, feeling Simon’s eyes narrow from across the room as their principal prepared to defend one of his Generals.

“You’re a witness, Domingo. All of you are,” Haughn said flatly. “You can’t be investigating your own case. More important, you’re one of the agents I know I can trust, but your cousin Ernesto is in this up to his eyeteeth. And we both know all Homeland Security has to do is breathe counterterrorism, and all of you could end up in custody who knows how long. If you’re lucky. This is a mass murder case. The Shays have every reason to make sure there are no inconvenient witnesses left standing. I want you, and your family, and everyone in this room out of Boston.”


32 thoughts on “What Comes Around Ch 22 bit – Exfiltrate

  1. THAT certainly works into Simon’s plans….Nicely played. Domingo, Sarah, Matt, Maria – welcome to the madhouse that is Hancock *G*


    1. >…Poor, poor Domingo. *EG*>
      Well somebody has to be the straight man/King wrangler in this insanity. Ja’far needs a break every now and again.


  2. Richard stands up and acts like a father *and* we have a decent government official who isn’t Domingo? Morning is made.
    Also, is this just a ‘get out of town’ or witness protection? Because if it’s the latter, I’m sure Simon would be all too happy to help.
    …that tiny wailing sound you hear is poor Domingo’s sanity being flushed down the tubes. Bah, who needs sanity anyway?


      1. …Ja’far, and *two* magi? That’s “I almost feel bad for the attackers” territory.


  3. Yay for competence . . .

    As for Alan’s why does everyone always look me when they say things like that . . . I don’t think I’d alone in the room going “Really, Alan?”
    {1} You’re a king. People will look to you. It’s part of it package and there is a reason that while it doesn’t translate perfectly (words seldom do), that ruhk translates that word as king.
    {2} While I don’t know you set random fires, I doubt gaining Amon was the start of “kill it with fire” and “fire pretty” in this life. You’ve always been the straight-forward sort. And part of your soul probably remembers fire being a pretty decent problem-solver (ashes don’t cause much trouble) . . .

    Sorry, Domingo, there is no escaping this combination of Wonderland and Never-Never Land. Particularly since the local Peter Pan wants to keep you . . .
    “Join the Weird side! There’s food AND monster hunts!”


    1. I’m sure Simon will be setting stuff on fire, too. A little more indirectly, maybe. 😉

      And Alan would like to say he does not solve EVERY problem by setting it on fire.

      …Granted, these days he’s running into more problems where that’s the only logical response….

      Monster BBQ days at Hancock! Fanalis with all the fish they can eat! *G* Who’d want to leave?


  4. Besides the competence? What gets me is how *bristly* Simon got at the idea that Domingo was getting kicked out of town. Yes he’s plotting to kidnap Domingo family. That doesn’t mean that anyone has the right to *throw him out.*

    And its a nice bit of symmetry here. Domingo allowed/arranged/looked the other way while Richard kidnapped Alan down to Hancock territory. Now SAC Haughn is allowing/arranging/looking the other way while Simon kidnaps Domingo and family down to Hancock territory. This story begins and ends in kidnapping. Was that on purpose?


  5. At this rate I expect to see Hancock expanding into Elementary school classes and potentially a College by the end of the story.

    It starts off with setting something temporary up for Alan’s kid-pack because A: Best to keep magician training in-house and B:the kids deserve an education while things are getting sorted out.

    Of coruse in typical King fashion (yes Alan, in some ways you’re as bad as Simon) things….snowball.
    Of course this means Yamraiha’s reincarnation ends up getting hired somehow because they need a proper magic teacher and the Rukh provides.


      1. This also opens the door to all sorts of transfer student shenanigens. From other reincarnations to Jack/Cassie from SGC, it is going to be so much awesome!


    1. >It’s going to be the best-fortified set of schools ever. Hee. >
      Though to the ‘normals’ (Simon: You mean the boring people) the overt signs of said fortification won’t be to keep the students safe, but to keep the crazy contained in the school and away from the rest of humanity.


      1. >*Cackles!* If they knew about it? Yes!>
        I wasn’t even including the magic craziness in that idea. Even the ‘mundane’ craziness that is Hancock would weird some people out.

        The principal chasing students around on stage with a real scimitar, the sword-dancing cheerleaders, the Tech geeks making various flying camera drones, the archery club trying and sometimes succeeding in shooting down said drones (who are getting better and better at dodging) etc etc.

        Even before the introduction of magic use, in no way was Hancock High ‘normal’.


  6. Haven’t read Magi, but I hit up the tropes page, and nice parallels to canon here (taking refuge with Sinbad’s company, etc.). I love this kind of thing in AUs!

    I’m considering taking another stab at reading Magi because of this fic, but I’m wondering if I should wait until it’s complete and check it all out from the library for a binge-read. Or do you think this is in the ‘read this now!’ category?


    1. Well, I started with the anime, and am still working my way through the manga. I’d definitely go for the anime on Crunchyroll, they ended season 2 at a fairly good break point. (Whyyyy must Adventures of Sinbad be on Netflix, why….) For the manga – hmm. Fifty-fifty on read now or wait ’til finished. Your library gets Magi? Wow…..


      1. Ah, great, it’ll be good to have something new to watch with people. The library system here and the one at the last place I lived have pretty decent manga sections in the teens/kids area of the library! Sometimes two sections, one for adults/teens and another in the children’s area with less adult series. Very handy, especially with interlibrary loan if there’s a missing volume. I know one person who got a library card after I told them about this, so having a manga section seems to be good for getting people into the library.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. @Laryna6: Hi! tag0 here! Nice to see you on Vathara’s blog…

        You are so, so lucky. Not only do our libraries here have a seriously impoverished idea of science-fiction, fantasy, and manga, but the Newfoundland government has decided to be idiotic enough to close some. (Including a number that are at outports where visiting another “local” library would involve a ferry ride at the very least!)


  7. Oh, hi! I didn’t know that the AO3 was where stuff was getting posted, so…. Ah, ok, that’s how you sign up to get notified of updates for a wordpress. *does so*

    Ouch, that sucks. How do you survive, is the inter-library loan system at least good enough that you can have some things waiting for you when you do get to a library? My grandmother ran a library in Minnesota, so I grew up aware of the things that library systems could do to get your hands on stuff (how I read a lot of Discworld when it was rare/constantly out of print in the US as a kid).

    Honestly, if your library system isn’t meeting the needs of SF and manga fans, no wonder their funding is getting cut. Given the reader demographics they’re losing, they’re cutting themselves in the throat there. Not sure of how it works in Canada, but given how library usage (and thus value to the community) is calculated in the US, the particular way people read manga should boost a library’s stats a lot, and usage stats are pretty important to arguing for funding.

    I haven’t asked a librarian if having a manga collection turns out that way in practice as well as theory, but from what I’ve seen, the ‘new’ library designs that are clearly set up to bring people in and maximize library usage are often the ones that have several sets of shelves of manga placed where it will be very easy for the demographics that are into it to spot (not to mention the value to the community of encouraging young readers). So yeah, the smart librarians are making sure there’s manga available.

    If this was a US library system, I’d recommend talking to the Friends of the Library/whatever save/support our libraries organization exists and finding out why they don’t have more SF and manga on the shelves (bias against them/someone’s not checking the data on optimal library collections when information science is a big part of a librarian’s job/lack of funding) and what needs to happen to get the libraries to fix that. Because if the argument for closing down these libraries is ‘look at the numbers, people aren’t using them,’ then a donation or policy change that gets manga on the shelves of a library in a community with lots of families or more SF in an older community could go a long way towards shutting down the people shutting down libraries.

    Re. YA, stocking YA is a no-brainer, but that’s just it, it’s a no-brainer (someone’s likely thinking they’re future romance genre readers), so if that’s the only thing they’re getting in more of to bring in readers, that is indeed facepalm worthy.


    1. Thanks! Part of the local problem is one set of libraries disconnected itself from another, and the overall things they could access dropped like a rock accordingly. And they now refuse to do ILL, ’cause that costs money. Drat.


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