The name is Hooper, Molly Hooper - Molly Hooper Appreciation week - Day 2
“The problem is, I’m not sure either of us could survive it, Miss Hooper…” He whispered, the words soon covered by his typing on the keyboard.
It wasn’t unusual for M to spend the evening at his office. A quick trip to have a dinner at the Brunswick House’s restaurant, and he was back to MI6 headquarters, trying not to lose his patience while fixing the mess that one of his supposed best agents had made two weeks ago.
When he arrived at his office, he noted that his new assistant was not at the desk. Another reprimand in order for him, it seemed, and one step closer to another reassignement.
M entered his office, and immediately headed towards the hidden compartment where he put his Balvenie Double Wood whiskey. He was pouring himself a glass when he suddenly heard the sound of a glass clanging from behind him, and a silhouette appeared near the window.
M didn’t even try to restrain his annoyance. “Where the hell have you been?”
“Enjoying death. 007 reporting for duty, M”, a soft, feminine voice answered. The woman didn’t wait for an invitation, and sat down, taking a sip of the expensive whiskey.
“I knew it was too early to promote you…”, M snapped, and an arrogant smirk appeared on her thin lips.
“Well, I reckon double Os have a short life expectancy… So don’t worry, your mistake will be short lived”, she quipped.
“Miss Hooper, may I remind you that the operation in Pakistan was to be conducted discreetly? Nevertheless, you stormed into a foreign embassy, violating the only absolutely inviolable rule of international relations, and why? So you could kill a nobody. We wanted to question him, not to kill him!” M finished his speech with a growl, even more irritated by the way the agent seemed to stay unaffected by his invective, too focused by her drink.
A long moment of silence passed, and finally she replied. “You seem to forget another important fact about my mission. One of your agent nearly killed me, Myc-”
“Utter one more syllable and I’ll arrange so that he will finish the job. Now, out of my office!”, M ordered, and Molly obliged, eagerly closing the door behind her back.
At the desk outside, M’s new assistant was typing at the computer, and Molly couldn’t help but asking “Not enough excitement in Karachi for you, Mr Holmes?”
“I’ve been reassigned. Temporary suspension from field work”, the man answered, not sparing her a glance.
“Oh really, and why?”, she inquired, a cheeky grin on her pale face that seemed to light up the dark room.
This time, Sherlock raised his eyes from the screen and stared at her. “Oh, I don’t know exactly. Something to do with killing 007, apparently.”
“Well, you gave it your best shot…”, she conceded, leaning forward, so that he could take a sniff of her scent. Something citrusy, with a note of sweet (maybe lavender honey?), blended with her natural fragrance. He found it extremely alluring, and she knew it.
“Oh, that was hardly my best shot.” Sherlock stiffened, and distanced himself, focusing once again on the document he was typing.
“Well, I’m not sure I could survive your best…” Molly let a genuine smile grace her small mouth for one moment; it was too quick for him to see it, and when he allowed himself to look at her again, she was already strolling down the hall.
How To Talk To A Secret Agent Who Is Wearing Headphones
My #microfiction response to that shitty Modern Man article that’s going round…
Agent 3 had been on the target’s tail for hours and her nerves had frayed to the point of tearing.
The target - Codename Zone - had been sticking to busy streets. The crowds of commuters felt like they were peeling her, taking a layer of skin with them each time they brushed past. And even through the headphones, the tangle of overheard conversations was stretching her limited attention span in a dozen directions.
She was exposed. Raw. Cracked.
But she was the only agent who’d ever laid eyes on Zone, so here she was. In the field.
And feeling constantly about to shatter.
She wouldn’t have made it this far without the headphones. Without the other Agents talking her through it.
And it was nearly over. Zone had headed into a public park and was surely about to make the drop.
That was when a hand suddenly jumped out in front of her.
She started and nearly tripped over the man who was trying to get her attention.
He was miming something. Something about her headphones?
Her skin was crawling. A scream was bubbling in her throat. She wanted to run. To cry. To claw this man’s eyes out.
But Zone was looking in her direction now and she couldn’t risk startling him any further.
She looked the man in the eyes. He mimed taking her headphones out. She shook her head. No.
He slowly mouthed the words: “I. Want. To. Talk. To. You.”
All she wanted was to be alone. To be quiet. To hug herself tight and claw at her arms and sob silently. But people were relying on her.
She shook her head again.
The man was looking at her, smiling, nodding, miming as if she didn’t speak English.
“Please leave me alone.” She whispered.
He mimed taking off her headphones again.
She looked up. Zone was gone. She’d lost him.
Agent 3 looked back at the man. His kind, condescending smile had begun to slip. She could see the bitterness of thwarted expectation beneath his mask.
My favorite scene with Mr Vladimir comes at the end of the 1992 adaptation of The Secret Agent, but since that might constitute spoilers* for the adaptation that’s airing now, I decided to do this bit instead from Vlad’s first scene with Verloc.
*Although it might not – from what I’ve seen of the new version it’s taking a much different approach in terms of characterizations and accents.
And speaking of accents (if that’s even the right word) , I’m not sure I entirely buy Peter as a Russian spymaster, but I like how the role gives him a chance to be classy evil for the first time after having done more chaotic evil as Zeno and sexy sleezeball evil as Ken Cracken MP.
I used to really hate the soulpatch (of evil), but now I look on it as sort of a precursor to The Greatest Mustache in the World the same way young Vlad here is a sort of precursor to the Cardinal – at least in terms of snark and his total commitment to protecting the State (well, HIS State) whatever it takes…