"It's crashed smack in the middle of London."
"You're sure it's alien?"
"Sure I'm sure. Thing came from quadrant beta-four-two. Way deeper than anything humans have got in orbit. Check the trajectory for yourself." Mickey rolled his chair back from the desk so his boss could lean in and look at the data on the screen if she wanted.
Gwen declined the offer. "I trust you. You wouldn't be on my team if you didn't know what you're doing. Are the cops there yet?"
He typed in a command that granted him access to New Scotland Yard's systems--not that NSY knew that. "Nah. They've been called, though. Be on their way any minute."
"Naturally. Hey, Ace?" Gwen turned and called over her shoulder to the team's explosives expert and saw that the woman was already donning her black motorcycle jacket for a night-time ride. Gwen nodded approval, a tight smile on her lips. "Good. Get in there and do what you can to hold the police back and keep people safe. Mickey, you and Martha tool up and follow in the SUV. Lois and I can cover things at this end. We'll be ready when you bring back whatever it is."
"Shit," muttered Mickey, still at his computer.
"What is it?" asked Ace. She grabbed her helmet off the old sofa by the door.
"They're sending that Inspector Lestrade guy you hear about in the news sometimes. You know what that means."
He looked at Ace like she was the village idiot. "Seriously? You must know who he's going to call in, right?"
"I said no. Who is it?"
"It's gonna be Sherlock Holmes, isn't it. He's always in on the weird shit. Duh."
"Just what we need," said Gwen with an irritated sigh. "The Yard's pet consulting detective."
"Oh yeah!" Ace grinned wickedly. "I dunno, though. I think I'd like to see him try to logic out alien technology. Might just make his head spin round or steam come out of his ears or something."
"I want to see that!" Mickey rose and headed quickly for the subterranean garage where the SUV was parked.
"Call Martha!" Gwen shouted after him. "You need to pick her up on the way, and you know how she is if you wake her up by pounding on her door!"
"Yeah, yeah! I know. I will!"
"What about Lois?" Ace asked after he'd gone.
"I'll let her sleep. You lot won't be back before morning anyway."
"You're a good boss, Boss."
"You've got what you need?"
"Yeah. The bike's got a full tank and the standard mini-kit's already on board. I checked it was stocked up this afternoon. Good thing, too, huh?" Ace bounded across the Hub and stood on the open platform lift that would take her up to the Bowl. "I'm looking forward to this."
"I see that. I admit some curiosity about Sherlock Holmes, myself."
"Oh he's whatever, yeah? But that mate of his, John Watson? He's kind of cute."
"Mind on your job, if you please," chided Gwen, half-seriously.
"Aw, you never let me have any fun," joked Ace.
"You poor thing. Off you go. It's a long drive to London."
"Not if I kick in the afterburners."
"You'll do no such thing without my authorisation. I'll keep an eye on things from here and let you know if that becomes necessary. Otherwise, stick to your usual methods."
That meant break every speed record she could without engaging the suped-up engines she'd fitted into her bike's systems. It wasn't as good, but it mollified Ace for the time being.
Gwen shooed her out. "Go. Now."
"Yes, ma'am!" Ace mock-saluted and activated the lift.