Originally posted In Section 7 PicFic Tuesday Challenge 10/22
Alexander Waverly sat in the barber’s chair ready to enjoy his shave while Mison and Beharie, his security, sat across from him after checking out the building and locking the doors.
Vinnie, the barber, was known for using an old fashion cut throat razor and hot towels to shave his customers which brought in those who enjoyed the pleasures from a simpler time. A hot towel was placed over Waverly’s face relaxing the muscles.
The old-fashion shave brought back memories of his earlier life. It was a time when it was easy to know what was good and what was bad. Relaxing in the chair the UNCLE chief’s thoughts began to drift to times that were happier and without the problems he faced daily. Soon he was dozing.
The curtain from the back opened a slit and darts hit the Section Three guards. The men were not unconscious but were unable to move. Within a minute, the barber was pushed down and his razor taken from his hands.
Placing the blade under the head of UNCLE Northwest’s chin, Hallen the leader of the group directed, “Wake up old man but don’t move too fast. I wouldn’t want the blade to slip and accidentally cut you. You’re going to be my ticket to the head of New York Thrush.”
The towel was removed from Waverly face allowing him to face Hallen. “You know this won’t get you anything.”
“Oh I doubt that Solo or Kuryakin will allow you to die. Do it now.” He instructed one of his men.
“I would suggest you stop this nonsense now, before Mr. Solo and Mr. Kuryakin become involved. Mr. Solo doesn’t like his Friday date night interrupted.” Waverly sat seeming not to have a worry in the world.
Stepping up to Mison a Thrush guard gave him an injection after a nod from Hallen.
“That will allow you to speak only,” Hallen explained. “You will contact Solo and tell him personally to deliver the Winter’s formula alone. Tell him I don’t want to see anyone else especially his partner or his Number One dies.”
“He won’t give you the file,” Waverly stated in a matter of fact voice.
“Then you’ll die old man.” Hallen had heard stories about Waverly ability to frustrate his enemies and his seeming indifference at being a prisoner bothered him.
“Young man, you’ll find that insulting your elders doesn’t make for good leadership.”
“Shut-up old man or you’ll see what my leadership can do.”
Leaning back in the chair, Waverly closed his eyes and relaxed.
Napoleon was smiling. He had just managed to get Kathy to agree to a date. Finally, three months of trying paid off when the phone rang.
“Napoleon we have Mison on the phone. He says it urgent that he speaks to you.” Waverly’s secretary informed him.
“Put him through,” becoming serious he waited for Mison to begin.
“Mr. Solo. Hallen is holding Mr. Waverly at razor point. He wants you personally and alone to deliver the Winter’s file to the barber shop.”
Hitting another button he called to security chief. “Waverly has been taken. I want an assault team in my office now.”
Bell clanged, and agents ran to their post, Illya ran into their office. Napoleon indicated he should listen.
“Let me talk to the man,” Napoleon spoke through clenched teeth.
After a moment, Hallen came on the line. “You heard the demands Solo. Make sure the report is on File 40 paper, I have a way to check to see if it’s real or not. You have one hour or you’ll be short a Section One. Oh and see to it no other agent especially your partner shows their face or….” He let the threat stand unspoken.
“I’ll be there. Just make sure Mr. Waverly is untouched when I do or there won’t be a place on earth you can hide.”
“Hurry Mr. Solo, you have 57 minutes left.” With that he hung up looking at his prisoner. “You must be worth more than you think old man.”
Waverly looked at him with a grin that would make a smart man run for the hills. “We’ll see.” Once more he closed his eyes.
“Napoleon, what are you planning to do?” Illya could see his partner thinking about the next move.
“Are you done doing your thing with the Winter’s formula?”
“Good. Get your copy and put it on File 40 paper. I think I’ve found a use for your fiddling around with captured documents We have a madman to fool.”
Napoleon entered the shop and was immediately met with a gun at his head.
“Come in Mr. Solo and stand over there.” Hallen ordered.
Napoleon stood still while one of the Thrush guards searched him. Glancing at Waverly, he asked, “Are you okay sir?”
“I irritated that my shave was interrupted but other than that fine. What are you doing here?
“I had to wait for Mr. Kuryakin to bring the Winter’s file he had been examining. I sorry it took so long to get here.”
“You know our policy I believe,” Waverly demanded.
“Obviously Waverly, UNCLE think you’re worth breaking policy,” the Thrush chief said then waited in silence for his man to get done.
When the guard had finished the search, “He has nothing on him boss except this file.”
“You came in unarmed Solo, kind of foolhardy isn’t it?”
“Why bring in something that you’re going to take away from me. Besides my expense account would be overdrawn for this month if I had to replace my gun and communicator.”
Waverly cleared his throat and spoke softly. “As if that would be something new Mr. Solo. At least this time it wouldn’t be for a new suit.”
Napoleon reddened a little, “Yes sir.”
Hallen laughed at the CEA’s discomforted before pulling out a bottle of liquid and tossing it to Napoleon. “Pour that on the corner. If the paper is truly File 40 paper it will turn purple, if there are any surprises, you’ll pay the price.”
Hesitating, Napoleon placed the paper on the counter. He held the bottle out looking uncertain.
“Is there a problem Solo? Perhaps you did something to the paper?”
Now everyone was watching what the UNCLE agent was doing. “Of course not. I just don’t want you to blame me if the liquid destroyed the formula.”
As the liquid began to drop on the sheets, an explosion outside had everyone’s eyes turning toward the street. At the same time, a small door behind the barber’s chair swung open. Illya rushed out, grabbing Hallen hand causing him to drop the razor and sending him to the ground. Napoleon punched the guard beside him sending him to the floor. Meanwhile, Waverly tripped the second guard who was coming to Hallen’s aide.
Next the door burst open and UNCLE agents flowed in.
The excitement over, Waverly’s harrumph called everyone’s attention to himself.
“Mr. Solo, you do remember our policy about giving in to terrorists’ demand I hope.”
“Then maybe you can explain why you brought the Winter’s file here?”
“Well sir,” Napoleon answer. “This is Mr. Kuryakin copy of the file. You know how he likes to tinker.”
“What difference does that make?” Hallen yelled at the agents.
Illya’s smile indicated that he was going to take pleasure in his explanation. “As usually I make a copy of it changing a few essential items to make it useless to someone else unless they had knowledge of advance chemistry and knew what it was supposed to do.”
The Thrush chief didn’t understand what had gone wrong with his plan. His men had gone over the shop a few nights ago and didn’t find anything. “How did you know about that door Kuryakin?”
“Young man. Do you think my security would allow me to go into a place that didn’t have an unknown escape route? Mr. Solo would you please retrieve that razor.”
Picking up the razor, Napoleon glanced at his boss.
“Give it back to Vinnie. I intend to have my shave. Take that man back to headquarters and see what he is willing to share with you.”
“Sir, are you sure you want to continue this today?” Illya asked comfortable with the idea that Thrush knew of this location.
“I see no reason I shouldn’t. You two have everything under control though I am sorry your date will need to be cancelled as I believe you’ll be otherwise occupied tonight.”
Illya began to argue but Napoleon put his hand on his partner’s shoulder. “I’ll leave some agents with you sir. We’ll see you back at headquarters if there is nothing else you need.”
“I told him he wouldn’t receive the file and that you wouldn’t let him kill me. As the result is what I expected, I’m going to continue with my private time that I have been waiting for all week. Now please let me enjoy it.” The head of UNCLE Northwest’s ordered as Hallen was led out of the shop. He sat back in the chair, closed his eyes and began to take pleasure from his old-fashion shave.