When Opal Koboi joined forces with Briar Cudgeon and his goblins, she realised
that she needed a back-up plan. Their scheme to overthrow the LEP had been
ingenious, but there was always a chance that something could go wrong. In the
event that it did, Opal had no intention of spending the rest of her life in
prison. The only way she could make a clean getaway was if everybody thought she
was still locked up. So Opal had begun to make preparations.
The first was to set up the emergency fund for the Argon Clinic. This would
ensure she was sent to the right place if she had to induce a cleansing coma.
The second step was to get two of her most trusted personnel installed in the
clinic, to help with her eventual escape. Then she began siphoning huge amounts
of gold from her businesses. Opal did not wish to become an impoverished exile.
The final step was to donate some of her own DNA and green light the creation of
a clone that would take her place in the padded cell. Cloning was completely
illegal, and had been banned by fairy law for over five hundred years since the
first experiments in Atlantis. It was by no means a perfect science. Doctors had
never been able to create an exact fairy clone. The clones looked fine, but they
were basically shells with only enough brain power to run the body's basic
functions. They were missing the spark of true life. A fully grown clone
resembled nothing more than the original person in a coma. Perfect.
Opal had had a greenhouse lab constructed far from Koboi industries, and
had diverted enough funds to keep the project active for two years. The exact
time it would take to grow a clone of herself to adulthood. Then when she wanted
to escape from the Argon Clinic, a perfect replica of herself would be left in
her place. The LEP would never know she was gone.
As things had turned out, she had been right to plan ahead. Briar had proved
treacherous, and a small group of fairies and humans had ensured his betrayal
led to her own downfall. Now Opal had a goal to bolster her willpower. She would
maintain this coma for as long as it took, because there was a score to be
settled. Foaly, Root, Holly Short and the human Artemis Fowl. They were the ones
responsible for her defeat. Soon she would be free of this clinic, and then she
would visit those who had caused her such despair, and give them a little
despair of their own. Once her enemies were defeated she could proceed with the
second phase of her plan; introducing the mud men to the People, in a way that
could not be covered up by a few mind wipes. The secret life of fairies was
almost at an end.
Opal Koboi's brain released a few happy endorphins. The thought of revenge
always gave her a warm fuzzy feeling.
The Brill brothers watched Doctor Argon limp up the corridor.
'Moron,' muttered Merv, using his telescopic vacuum pole to chase some dust out
of a corner.
'You said it,' agreed Scant. 'Old Jerry couldn't analyse a bowl of vole curry.
No wonder his wife is leaving him. If he was any good as a shrink, he would've
seen that coming.'
Merv collapsed the vacuum. 'How are we doing?'
Scant checked his moonometer. 'Ten past eight.'
'Good. How's Corporal Kelp?'
'Still watching the movie. This guy is perfect. We have to go tonight. The LEP
could send someone smart for the next shift. And if we wait any longer the clone
will grow another inch.'
'You're right. Let me check the spy cameras.'
Scant lifted the lid on what appeared to be a janitor's trolley, festooned as it
was with mops, rags and sprays. Hidden beneath a tray of vacuum nozzles, was a
colour monitor split into several screens.
A Man Called Intrepid author dies aged 89(Dec 03 2013) William Stevenson, a journalist and author who drew on his close ties with intelligence sources to write two best-selling books in the 1970s, A Man Called...