STRATAGEM Chapter 8
AT THIS UNGODLY HOUR? Marcus Crowley grumbled at the text message calling him in for an urgent matter. He happened to be the only medical examiner in the area with sufficient clearance to even set foot in Vanderberg. But come on, at 12:48 AM? Really?
The message came from ICOMM rather than NASA. Better not be late, could very well be a matter of national security. Odd, he’d never had to perform an autopsy at a space shuttle launch facility.
Muttering each step of the way, Marcus threw some clothes on, grabbed his briefcase, keys, and phone, then left the house.
Thirty-eight minutes, three security check-points, and countless expletives later, he arrived at the medical facility. Walking alone inside a dark building in the wee hours of the night wasn’t so bad. Nor was having to spend the night with a bunch of corpses. Having to do it all unscheduled? That was the worst. Didn’t anyone honor the sanctity of the calendar anymore?
At last, he arrived, entered the exam room, and prepped himself for the autopsies. It took a bit longer than usual to get inside the hazmat suit—such a nuisance! When he finally finished he went through the safety doors and switched on the lights.