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Chapter 11: Retrieval
Frantically searching through different cabinet drawers while trying to remain as quiet as possible, my lack of motivation caught up to me.
"You need to calm down V." Yoongi suggested firmly, "If you panic anymore than you are now then you'll end up hyperventilating. Just take a damn breath." I could hear the strain in his voice, he too was on the verge of losing it.
At this point I was seeing red, my own anger combined with the thought of not being able to complete our mission was almost overwhelming me. It was the type of anger that gave you unnecessary bouts of energy and made you feel jittery, or at least that was the best way to explain it. For a moment I stopped, shut my eyes and took a deep, slow breath, trying to retrieve any semblance of control. I needed to get my tranquillity back.
It had been nearly an hour and still no progress was made towards finding the files regarding H.I.T, the urge to give up was frighteningly strong - but still, I persisted and kept to it.
Reaching the 31st cabinet, I opened the first drawer.
-FILES ON S.M-
Wow... They even have files on S.M, there's no uncertainty that E.C.T would be suspicious of them now after our last mission here.
I moved on to the second drawer.
-FILES ON J.Y.P-
Then the third drawer.
-FILES ON Y.G-
With false hope, I grasped the handle of the fourth drawer, expecting an indie mafia company...
-FILES ON H.I.T-
A wave of relief hit me as I finally came across the cabinet I was so desperately looking for. However, a few things confused me a little. What was KARD doing in this cabinet? Didn't they leave H.I.T? And more importantly, why was there designated file sections for BTS and KARD? Are we that significant to E.C.T. that we need fully fledged files about us?
Understanding that H.I.T would probably scold us for prying through crucial files, I forced my curiosity to die down and I looked up to find Yoongi.
"Suga, pass me the duffel bag." I instructed quietly.
"You found the files?" He inquired in a low voice, sliding the bag towards me at the same time.
"Yep, they've got a lot more on us than any other company they've investigated." I explained, grabbing the files section by section to stuff them into the duffel bag.
"The duffel bag might be a dead giveaway considering Jimin already has a bag with him and E.C.T will probably do security checks on his bag before he leaves." Namjoon started, "I suggest sending the bag through ventilation, there's an outside grate that is large enough and accessible, which links directly to the file room fortunately enough. So Jungkook is going to travel through and collect the bag from you both. You got that? " It was a lot to take in, but we managed to get our heads around it in the nick of time.
"Let's do this." I stated with a confident smirk.
Precisely as I finished packing the files into my duffel bag, I zipped it up and then began looking for the vent access.
I switched on my flashlight again and tracked it across the walls of the file room. Conveniently beside the cabinet I had just ransacked, a metal grate had been enforced into the wall, a dark, hollow entrance lurking behind it.
"I think I found it." I murmured.
"That's good, does it need to be pried open?" Yoongi asked, making sure to keep his voice down.
"Maybe.." I investigated the grate as I spoke, which made my speech sound slower than usual since I was focusing on something else.
Just to be sure, Yoongi handed me a small pickaxe.
With further inspection, the grate seemed pretty solid. Almost immediately, I grabbed the pickaxe, forcing the smaller edge into a gap in the grate and tugging hard. It took an immense amount of strength but finally I managed to open it, and at a faint noise level.
"The outside vent is only a few yards away from us, I've managed to disable the surveillance cameras by the vent access on the secondary laptop and Jungkook is getting ready to go and grab the bag." Namjoon explained, "Give us a shout when you're all set."
"Does Jungkook know the layout of the vent?" I questioned in a low voice.
"Not completely, but he'll be taking some equipment with him anyway."
Leaving the van with discreet caution, I made my way towards the vent access. Plenty of bushes and trees covered this side of the E.C.T building. I certainly got lucky here. My rucksack, carrying my harness equipment if necessary, lay heavily on my back. Crouched down and almost ready, I slung my bag off of my back and opened it quietly.
"18-5-1-4-25." I mumbled audibly enough for my group to hear.
"Alright, make your way up in a couple of minutes and I should be good to hand you the bag." Taehyung stated in a soft tone.
"Noted." I replied.
Promptly and with a sense of calmness, I grabbed my harness and put it on as quick as I could. Unscrewing the large vent grate, I placed it against the wall beside the gap. Staying alert, I cautiously placed my rucksack in the vent, pushing it further down to give myself room to squeeze in.
After taking a few deep breaths, I crawled in, gently jolting my rucksack along. The vent started off as a lengthy pathway, without any turns or drops. Moments later, I reached a junction, where the vent continued on ahead of me but also went further upwards. When I looked up, I saw Taehyung poking his head out of the vent section several metres up. To avoid suspicions we still communicated through the earpiece.
"Should I slide the bag down or are you climbing up?" Taehyung asked, as he examined the drop it would take.
"Climbing would be too loud.. I have a better idea." I started, being sure to keep my voice at a low level.
"What were you thinking?"
"I'm gonna toss my rope up to you, if you grab it and wrap it securely around that hook-like metal piece in the top of the vent near you and then tie it to the duffel bag, we can transport it safely and with no noise." I elucidated.
"Good thinking!" Taehyung complimented, I could almost hear his grin.
I chucked the rope up to Taehyung and he grasped it instantaneously, tying it around the hook and then tying it to the duffel bag's handle. As he carefully pushed the bag off of the vent's ledge, he pulled down on the rope to lower it while I slowly released my grip. Falling at ease, the duffel bag swept the sides of the vent a couple of times, making us wince in concern of being caught.
Thankfully, a few minutes later, the precious duffel bag had reached my safe hands. I untied the rope from the handle and Taehyung untied the rope from the hook.
"Have fun getting out V." I chuckled as I looked up at him.
"Shut up." He laughed softly, "Just make sure you get that bag safely back to the group."
Extracting the duffel bag from the vent, I packed my rope into my rucksack and made my way out. When I was finally back outside, I took off my harness and closed up the vent grate again. Thank god I didn't need that harness, that would've been too much effort.
Beginning to pack away my things, the corridor had finally died down and there wasn't another soul to be seen.
"7-15." I spoke, pretending to read the order number on the box.
In the blink of an eye, Yoongi and Taehyung were outside of the file room, managing to look like the clueless trainees that had entered previously.
"Everything is as we left it." Yoongi whispered.
"Good." I replied back with a smile, "We're not out of the woods just yet though."
Tool bag in grasp, I picked up the already opened cardboard box that had the 'broken' bulb inside where order no. 7-15 had been previously.
All three of us walking together, we made our way downstairs and signed out, but before we could leave, our bags had to be searched.
"Hand me your bags please." The security guard instructed firmly.
We obeyed his word without hesitation. I gave him my duffel bag first.
Rummaging through my bag, it felt almost like the guard was trying to find something suspicious. Yet he had no luck, all he came across were a bunch of different tools and the broken bulb in the box I was holding.
Taehyung looked a little uneasy as Yoongi handed the guard his rucksack. And that's when it hit me... Doesn't Yoongi always carry his laptop with him??
Before I had a chance to postpone anything, the guard had already opened his bag. Shockingly, the only thing left in there was a water bottle, a notepad and a pen. Wonder how he managed to hide that.
Once the bag checks were over and done with, Taehyung, Yoongi and I peacefully left E.C.T and made our way towards the rest of our group.
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