Digging Too Deep

Digging Too Deep by Dylan Wise

Oliver Seton had never run a day in his life. If there was ever a time to start, it was now. He was attempting to escape the vicinity of his workplace, the Pentagon, as being there right now would result in certain death for him and eventually anyone else that had seen what Oliver had done. As the records management clerk, he held one of the lowest paying positions in the building but had one of the most important jobs. He took care of all the files stored in the building. Therefore, he knew things that (if the information somehow made its way out of the Pentagon) not only could get him killed, but also have a detrimental effect on the nation’s security. The position was a very important one and Oliver had always felt that he was quite underpaid (those who held his position typically had a starting salary of just over $36,000 a year, hardly enough money to buy a suitable apartment with in metropolitan D.C.). Now, something Oliver knew had gotten out and his life was in danger. As he continued to sprint across Constitution Avenue, Oliver tried to recall how he had managed to place himself in such a horrible predicament.

It all began just minutes before noon. Oliver had been looking for a file on a suspected terrorist that some of the higher-ups at the Pentagon were currently investigating. Instead, he uncovered a horrible truth about the very people for whom he worked. For years, the government had been authorizing the murder of innocent civilians in foreign countries, without U.S. citizens knowing it. That is, until Oliver Seton saw a file he, along with any of the others holding his position, was not supposed to see. The file contained graphic images of people, who were clearly civilians, suffering horrible deaths (many were hanged or burned alive) at the hands of the U.S. military. If what was in that file got out, the public’s image of the Central Intelligence Agency, as well as the various branches of the United States Military would never be the same again. It would be anarchy. But why? Why would the U.S. government condone such horrible acts when they were currently trying to cleanse the world of people who did such things (terrorists)? It didn’t make any sense. Though he didn’t know it at the time, but Oliver Seton had thrown himself into the midst of a situation well above his pay grade.

Now, he was running. Running for his life. He knew that those involved with the situation described in the file would not hesitate to kill him over classified information (after all, they killed innocent people). Many of them had been paid to kill before (being high-ranking generals in the U.S. military) (a job in which they had to kill to survive) while others had simply ordered the deaths of those they could not allow to live any longer. Oliver ran and ran until he got to his Subaru BRZ parked a few blocks from the Pentagon. The car looked out of place sitting next to the two cars that belonged to two people who he knew where both high ranking officials at the Pentagon: a two-tone Rolls Royce Phantom and a yellow Aston Martin V12 Vanquish (two cars Oliver couldn’t even afford to insure, let alone own). Knowing who owned the Rolls Royce (and not particularly caring for them), Oliver thought about running his key across the side of the car as he walked toward his BRZ. He thought about this alot, but, of course never would really do it. Oliver quickly opened the door to his car and got in. Turning the key as fast as he could and barely looking behind him to make sure he wasn’t going to back over someone, Oliver floored the car into reverse and gunned the gas pedal. He had to get out of here. He had to get out of here and think. He had a chance to make a difference now, but he would be risking his life if he took that chance. It would take time to make a decision.

Oliver got back to his apartment as quickly as he could. He ran out of his car and sprinted towards the door, as if someone was coming after him. He’s lucky he wasn’t dead right now. By all accounts, he should be. They would know, somehow they would find out. The people he worked for would turn against him, being the treacherous and backstabbing snakes that Oliver knew them to be. He’d seen this kind of thing happen to many coworkers before after all, though not nearly to this degree. His life was worth much less than the risk of American citizens uncovering secrets about the U.S. government. The horrible thing was: they wouldn’t just kill him, they would kill everyone he had ever talked to about the incident (at this point, it was obvious that they would know who he talked to, as their surveillance cameras would undoubtedly pick up on any conversation he had). He was not safe anywhere in the whole country. Familiar places would be closely watched and unfamiliar ones would be unpredictable. He had to leave, disappear, before it was too late to do so. He couldn’t tell anyone, not his wife, not his parents. Doing so would only put them in danger as well (assuming they weren’t already). Thankfully, Oliver’s wife and children were both gone at the moment (his wife at work and his children at school), so he didn’t have to tell them anything. He felt awful, but would rather survive and disappoint his family than die and never see them again. He would sort this out, somehow.

He packed his suitcase as quickly as possible. He needed to be in Ronald Reagan National Airport in the next hour. He’d have to hurry. He pulled into the parking lot at 6:15 PM. He was there in 45 minutes. Everything seemed fine. He hadn’t noticed anyone following him. No strange black vehicles with government plates. He was in the airport being checked by security by 6:30 PM. Then, as he made his way through the last security checkpoint, three men wearing black suits and clearly carrying handguns ran through the entrance of the airport, flashing their badges as they screamed for everyone to “get down”. They then soon proceeded to fire at Oliver, as he was the only people in the airport who, instead of doing what they asked, continued to run. Three shots rang out. Two of them missed. The other was the last thing Oliver Seton heard before he dropped to the airport floor, a 9 millimeter handgun round embedded in his chest. The bullet hit his heart and killed him almost instantly. The secrets he uncovered would die with him.

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