Undercover (The Garden and a Surprise Rescue) 5
by Ifeoma Isabella Okeke in Undercover
“Well,” Henry said as they finished their dinner “Would you like to see the gardens?”
Jade nodded “Yes, I would.”
The two stood up, told the servants good bye and left the kitchen.
“Mind if I ask you a question?” Jade asked as the leisurely walked down a long hall.
“Not a bit, My lady.” Henry answered teasingly.
Jade chuckled “I went to the baker this morning and he started talking…” she noticed Henry roll his eyes and shake his head “He said that this kingdom had it’s own agency,”
“That baker.” The Prince huffed “He couldn’t stay quiet to save his life. But, yes. This kingdom does have an agency.” he stuck his hands in his pockets “Would… you like to see the hall of the deceased agents?”
Jade nodded “If I can.”
Henry smiled “We thought it’d be okay since they’re dead and no one can hurt them.” he pointed to a door to show the way “It’s a nice way to honor those who have risked their lives to keep the royal family safe. They’re kind of like the soldiers… just way cooler.”
Jade couldn’t help the small laugh that escaped her throat. Prince Henry was nothing like what she had thought he would be when she first started this mission. He was so much sweeter and extremely funny.
She quickly pushed the thought from her mind… again.
“Here we are.” Henry announced, pushing open a set of large double doors “The hall of Agents.”
Jade’s eyes widened as she saw the lines of pictures, going from the ceiling to the floor “Wow. How long has this agency been going?”
“I like to tease people and say since the B.C’s, but that’s not entirely accurate.” Henry chuckled “It started before there was electricity though.”
Jade slowly moved down the line of pictures. Some of the people were old and gray. Some were probably in their mid-thirties or forties. Beneath each photo was plaque that told their names, what mission they were on, and how they had died.
There were actually quite a few of them that had died of old age.
“Ooh. Look at this one.” Jade said “Joined for at age of twenty-five. Served seventy years. Died of bullet wound.” she looked up at the prince amused “The criminals could have spared him. He wasn’t going to last much longer anyways.”
Henry laughed as they continued to walk down the hall of portraits.
When they came to one, Jade’s eyebrows rose. It was a couple that appeared to be in their mid twenties. The man had black hair and brown eyes while the lady had black hair and lavender eyes.
Jade cocked her head as she stared at them “What…?”
“These two,” Henry said “Were the prize jewel of the agency back then.” he chuckled slightly “I never knew them, of course. They were killed nearly twenty years ago.” he shook his head sadly “They were close to solving a case, and one night they were attacked.” he looked over at the girl next to him, then back at the portrait “And… you strangely look a lot like them. But… they didn’t have any children… so…”
Jade shook her head then turned to face the Prince “Well, Your Highness. Are we to see the gardens? Before daylight?”
The Prince held up his hand “On one condition. You call me Henry and not Your Highness.”
Jade thought a moment, then she nodded “Deal.”
“Good.” He held his hand out to her “Shall we?”
She stared at his hand for a moment, then very slowly placed hers in his “Sure.”
“Good.” The prince’s hand closed around hers’ then he led her out to the gardens.
The whole sight was breathtaking.
Roses, Carnations, Calla Lillies and every other flower of every color you could images were in full bloom and happily bobbing their heads in the soft breeze. Inside the patches of flowers were trees. Dogwoods and Redbuds, along with weeping cherries and willows. And it was the time of year which they all were showing off their bright pink, purple and white flowers. Small lights hung from the trees and lined the paths, giving it a warm glow.
“Do you like it?” Henry whispered.
Jade nodded slowly, still taking it all in “It’s… beautiful. How did I miss it last night?”
“The lights weren’t on.” He gently tugged on her hand “Come on. There’s something I want to show you.” he led her down one of the paths. About fifty yards back was a white pavilion covered in climbing roses. It also had lights along the ceiling and posts.
It was big enough for two people to dance in and no more.
“My Parents had this built for their first anniversary.” Henry said “And for when they threw balls.” he rolled his eyes slightly “They thought it was terribly romantic.”
Jade laughed softly “It is.” then she spotted a wooden box that blended in with the pavilion seats “What’s that?”
Henry held up a finger then walked over to box and opened it. He messed around on the inside for a moment, and a second later, soft music began to play from some speakers that were hidden somewhere in the roof.
He stood up and turned to face Jade “May I?”
“Did you forget I can’t dance?” Jade asked slightly teasing.
“I can’t either.” He held his hand out to her once again “May I, Miss Hannah?”
She’d almost forgotten he thought her name was Hannah! She smiled “If your toes don’t mind, Mr. Henry.”
“Not in the slightest.”
Then, the slow dance began. For a while, they watched their feet carefully, but finally fell into step with each other.
“I’m not sure this is the Waltz,” Jade said with a smile “But I think it’ll work.”
Henry nodded as he smiled down at her “Definitely.”
The dance continued in silence as the two just stared at each other, seeming to forget the rest of the world.
Several moments later, the music finally came to an end, but the two didn’t move back.
Henry couldn’t explain that feeling that kept pulling at him… Jade neither.
Very slowly, the gap between them became smaller and smaller.
“How charming.” A voice growled, causing the two to jumped back.
Standing outside the pavilion were the same seven from the night before.
“Run!” Henry suddenly shouted. He grabbed Jade’s hand and pulled her out of the pavilion and down a path.
“Get them!” one of the men shouted, then the whole group took off after the couple.
“You are so stupid!” Henry mentally kicked himself “You know how dangerous it is right now! And you get an innocent girl involved!”
As they ran, Jade slowly pulled her hand out of the Prince’s then jumped behind a bush.
A attackers ran past, not noticing she was there.
“Alright. Let’s get this over with.” she pushed the two buttons on her watch that made the men of her skirt roll back up and her pumps turn back into boots. She quickly took off the hoodie, pulled up her black hood and mask, then jumped out of the bushes and ran after the others
Henry skid to a stop “Hannah?” he looked around quickly “Oh-no. Where did she go?”
“Your Highness.” The same man that usually spoke said “Such a pleasure to see you without a crowd.”
The other men laughed evilly.
“Say good bye, Your Highness.” The man pulled out a gun and cocked it.
“Good Bye, Your Highness.” Jade said as she dropped from a tree and grabbed the man’s hand. Then she spun around and slung the guy over her shoulder to the ground and grabbed the gun from his hand “I do know how to use this.” she said, standing between the men and the Prince “The first one that takes a step forward or reach for another gun will pay… dearly.”
The men hesitated for a moment, waiting for their leader to give a command.
“Let’s go.” the man growled, then he and his crew took off running.
“Well, that was easy.” Jade thought as she watched the men run “Too easy.”
“Thank you.” Henry said “You saved my life… again.”
Somewhere a clock began to chime midnight.
Jade sighed “Excuse me.” then she ran.
“Hannah.” Henry suddenly remembered “Have to find Hannah,” then he backtracked, calling the girl’s name.
Jade ran as fast as she could back to where her hoodie was. Her clothes were reverted back to the way they were before, then she quickly fell back into the bush. Not her favorite Idea, but her only one.
“Hannah!” Henry called.
“Over here!” Jade answered “I’m kind of stuck.”
The prince hurried over to her “What happened?”
“While we were running, I tripped and fell into the bush. Now I’m stuck.”
“I’m glad they didn’t hurt you.” Henry quickly grabbed her arms and pulled her up “Are you sure you’re okay?”
“Yes.” Jade nodded “I’m fine. Are you?”
“Mm-hm. That agent showed up again.”
“Well, it’s been a long night. I need to get home.” Jade pulled a leaf out of her hair.
“Are you sure?” Henry asked a bit uncertain “They may not have left. I can send a guard with you.” Speaking of guards. He was going to have to find out where they went.
“They were after you, not me.” She smiled gently “I need to go.”
The Prince walked her to the front door of the castle “Will you be at the ball tomorrow night?”
“I plan on it.” She looked towards the town “See you later… Henry.”
“Good night, Hannah.” He watched as she walked away. He shook his head slowly “I hope she’ll be alright.” Then he slowly walked back into the palace.
Jade walked through the town, her mind on the Prince and their evening. There were times it seemed like he forgot he was a prince and just became a normal boy.
She smiled as she pulled the bobby pins out of her hair “He’s definitely different.”
She gasped as her arms were suddenly pinned harshly behind her back.
“Agent Jade.” A man whispered “You’ve been getting in our way.”
Seven more men stepped out of the bushes, their weapons drawn.
“All eight of them are here!” Jade thought, then she groaned “Jade! You should have been paying attention instead of thinking!” She jabbed her toe down on the man’s instep. But he didn’t loosen his hold. If anything, it got tighter.
“We have orders to get rid of you.” The man holding her laughed “And it looks like tonight’s the night.”
Jade pulled against the person holding her but he was too strong. She put her ear down to she shoulder, using her shoulder to flip on her earpiece “Cognito! I need help! Now!” there was no answer “Cognito?” Still no answer. She groaned in frustration “Where is he?”
One of the men held up his gun “Bye bye.”
“Let her go!” A person with a thick English accent shouted.
The gang spun around to see a person that was dressed like a ninja standing in the shadows.
“Who are you?” The man holding Jade growled.
“Let her go.” The new-comer said again.
“Make us!” One of the other men pulled up is gun and shot it.
The ninja simply leaned out of the way “If you insist.” then he leapt into action.
Jade couldn’t help but smile as she watched him knock the guns out of their hands. Two minutes later, seven of the men were laying on the ground, the only on left was the one holding Jade.
“Let her go now.” The ninja demanded.
“Never.” The man growled.
Jade gritted her teeth then slammed her heel down as hard as she could on the man’s foot.
“Ow!” He cried in pain.
A slight chuckled escaped the ninja’s throat right before he leapt forward, grabbed the man’s shirt and flung him away from Jade “Now leave!”
The eight men scrambled to their feet then hurried away.
“Thank you.” Jade said “I… was doomed.”
The ninja turned to face her and smiled “It was my pleasure, Ma’am.” he gently placed a hand on her shoulder “Are you sure you’re alright?”
“Yes. Thank you.” Jade nodded “I… need to get home.”
“Will you be alright on your own?”
“I’ll be paying more attention this time.” she smiled “Thanks again.” then she walked away.
The ninja watched her go and smiled “Pretty girl.” then he ran away.
At the T.S.M. Agents were walking around talking companionably to each other or preparing for their next case when the side door to the base was slammed open, then closed again so hard it broke the arm that closed the door slowly. The resounding BOOM! That echoed through the halls made everyone freeze.
A second later, the sound was followed by a “COGNITO!”
The agents looked at each other worried. They knew exactly who that was.
Jade stormed down the hall towards the Director’s office. Anyone in her way quickly fled to avoid being run over.
When she reached Cognito’s office, she didn’t even bother with the door knob, she just slammed the door open “Fredrick Ian Cognito!” she snapped “Where were you?”
Cognito looked up at the girl “What do you mean?”
Jade’s hands slammed down on the desk, causing the director to jump and scoot back a little “You were supposed to be available! I needed help and I couldn’t get through to you! Have you forgotten? Never leave an agent without a means of backup!”
Several agents were peeking in the office listening.
“I was in a really bad situation.” Jade continued through gritted teeth “And if he hadn’t showed up, I’d probably be dead!”
“I don’t know. He was dressed like a ninja and that’s all I can tell you.” Jade shook her head “That’s beside the point.” her lavender eyes show fire at the man before her “It’s a good thing you’re retiring soon, ’cause if you ever do that to me again… You’re not going to make it to the retirement date!” with that, she stormed from the room.
The agents who were listening in cringed. They all knew that Jade would never hurt a fellow Agent. But when she was mad, no one dared argue with her.
Jade walked into her room and to blow off the last bit of her steam, slammed the door.
She was tired. Exhausted more like it. She walked over to her bed and sat down “I’ll have to apologize tomorrow.” she sighed, falling back on her pillow “But right now, I’m too tired to do anything else.” she stared at her ceiling for a long moment “When they attacked in the garden, they weren’t after the prince.” she mused “They were after me. How do they know me? Outside of my disguise. And who saved my life?”
She thought over those things for a long time til her mind eventually wandered to the garden and the Prince… the pavillion.
With a groan, she rolled over onto her stomach and buried her face in her pillow “What were you thinking Jade? He’s a prince. You’re an agent! The two lives just don’t go together. And they never will.”
“Did you make it?” The Prince asked.
The ninja pushed back his hood and shook out his blond hair “Yes, Sir. I did.” he answered.
Prince Henry nodded “Good. I’d hate for an innocent girl to be harmed on my account.”
To Be Continued..
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