Chapter 26

By the time Rachel had completed her clandestine caper and gotten back to Dilli, dawn was creeping up the sky. She was tired and took a much more leisurely pace back to Salt Lake City. She had executed her plan flawlessly, achieved her objective, but she had a nagging feeling that she had screwed up. She parked Dilli. The thought of pole vaulting across the rooftops to get back to her apartment made her feel weary. She carefully moved to a position where the unmarked sedan was visible, guarding her apartment building, its occupants motionless. With any luck they had dozed off. She sighed, looked heavenward, and walked quickly up to the main entrance, keeping her motorcycle helmet on and visor down.

“The damn elevator!” She whispered to herself as she waited for the elevator in the lobby of her building. She wasn’t cursing this elevator, but the one in the Library at Salt City.

Things had gone sideways from the moment that Rachel pushed the elevator call button on the top floor of the library.

 

The elevator had arrived with what could only be described as an air of confusion, which shouldn’t even be possible for an elevator.

“Hi there!” Chirped the elevator in the voice of a middle-aged woman,

“I’m going to be your elevator here in the Library. I was just activated and you are my first rider!”

Rachel’s hackles rose and she glanced around self-consciously. She didn’t reply. Hesitantly she boarded the elevator carriage.

“Where to?” The elevator asked politely.

Rachel didn’t respond, but instead jabbed the button for the ground floor.

“Ok then, ground floor it is”

The doors closed and the elevator began to descend.

“People don’t usually start on the top floor.”

“Hmm?” Rachel murmured.

“Usually, the first time I meet someone they are on the ground floor. Where the entrance is.”

Rachel kept silent and tapped her foot nervously.

“Pretty unusual for someone to start at the top.”

A nervous pause.

“But then you look pretty fit, so you probably walk up stairs for exercise, right?”

Rachel didn’t say anything but prayed that the doors would open.

“It doesn’t bother me. People taking the stairs I mean. It’s good for you.”

The elevator arrived at the ground floor and Rachel, who was nervous and irritated, anticipating the doors opening began moving forward, only the doors didn’t open but hesitated just enough for Rachel’s forward motion to be stopped by actually bumping into the doors and bouncing off them.

“Oops, sorry!” Exclaimed the elevator, slowly opening the doors.

“I guess you’re pretty eager to get where you’re going.”

Rachel was infuriated and stormed out of the elevator muttering under her breath “Bitch!”

The elevator over heard and called out as she left, “Wait, did you just call me a bitch?”

 

In thinking through the exchange Rachel realized that this was obviously one of the new Secure Mobility type elevators that were packed with a variety of security features that would track all of the occupants in a building. She had indeed made the mistake of starting on the top floor. She had also left a thumbprint on the top floor call button, and an index fingerprint on the inside panel ground floor button. She hadn’t spoken and was disguised, but still, there was a very wide trail for someone to follow.

“Just let me make it to Friday!” She prayed aloud.

She took a long hot shower but couldn’t shake the feeling of having made a huge blunder in executing her plan. Rachel felt deflated compared to the excitement of the night before and looked longingly at her bed but, after a heavy sigh, got ready for work and headed out.

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