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|MacGyver Online Forums > Virtual Seasons > Virtual Season 10.8 - Louisiana Knights|
|Posted by: Sanguine 12 February 2020 - 06:38 AM|
| Part One
The Louisiana heat was a unique breed of swelter, he thought as he gazed out the windshield of the rusty F-150. The humidity, like a thick blanket, stretched lazily across the landscape. His black shirt clung tight to his muscled chest, and beads of sweat erupted everywhere his tanned skin was bare. He was driving too fast on the gravel road---suspension shaking, steering wheel vibrating like a jackhammer as chunks of limestone flew out from beneath the rumbling tires. Staticky strains of the Rolling Stones' "Gimme Shelter" echoed from the old radio.
"I'm going to wake you up, old friend," he said in a low voice, chancing a glance at the schematic rolled up on the torn seat beside him. "I'll do whatever it takes."
MacGyver leaned back against the wall with a grin, the plastic payphone receiver warm against his cheek. He cast a glance around the Morial Convention Center, with all its hustle and bustle, as he waited for Pete Thornton to pick up the phone.
Finally, he heard the click of someone answering on the other end.
"Hello?" said Pete.
"Hey, Pete! I'm checking in, just like you asked. Everything's running smoothly so far. Most of the Phoenix stuff is already settled in. We're still waiting on some of the people from Knight Industries to get set up."
"Oh boy, am I glad to hear that. I've been working on this exposition for over a month! It's hard to believe it's finally coming all together. How's security looking?"
"All of our teams are in place and doing exactly what they're supposed to do, Pete. There's no reason to worry."
"You tell that to my ulcer." Pete chuckled before he turned serious again. "Devon Miles mentioned that he might be sending some of his own security down there, too. Have they shown up yet?"
"Not yet, but I'm keeping an eye out. You just take it easy, Pete. I'll call you right before we start to open the doors, okay?"
"All right, MacGyver." Then Pete chuckled again. "After all the things you've been dealing with for the past few months, I guess providing security for a technology expo should be a piece of cake, huh?"
"Pete, ya know I hate it when you say things like that," MacGyver said lightly. "I'll call you back in a little while. You just take it easy."
After hanging up, MacGyver decided to take a little stroll through the expo. Booths were in various stages of set-up, with some barely touched and others that were already prepared for demonstrations. Futuristic and experimental tech was everywhere, with offerings from both the Phoenix Foundation and Knight Industries, along with a few others. Cyanobacteria-powered electrical generators, medical gadgets, advanced computers, and more covered the floor of the convention center.
MacGyver was grinning at a display that promised to showcase music from a Tesla coil when he heard a voice call his name---a voice he hadn't heard in a very long time.
"MacGyver? It is you! I knew it!"
"Kate? Kate Lafferty! I don't believe it!"
"You remember me!"
He grinned as the young girl---or young woman now, he corrected himself---charged at him and grabbed him in a hug. He'd seen her only once or twice over the past ten years, and she'd come a long way from being an insecure 15-year-old computer genius. The last he'd heard, she'd earned her third college degree and had been working on various cybernetics projects for both nonprofit companies and the very same branch of the Department of Defense whose systems she'd once hacked into.
"I almost didn't recognize you," he said. "Your hair is so much longer now!"
"I've been growing it out," she said with a grin. "I'm not sure if I want to keep it, though. It gets in my eyes. Well, I guess I'm not so much an ugly duckling anymore, am I?"
"You never were," Mac replied solemnly. "So how have you been? What are you into now? Is one of your projects here at the expo?"
Kate gestured across the conference center proudly. "Yeah, we're setting up back there. I got a position with Knight Industries, and we've been working on some of the most advanced cybernetics in the world. You wouldn't believe some of the stuff we've created! My team has made some incredible breakthroughs in computing and artificial intelligence." Then she grinned, leaned in, and lowered her voice. "Of course, everyone keeps whispering these rumors that Knight has some even more advanced AIs than anything else the world's ever seen, but---" she straightened up and returned to normal volume, "I doubt if it's true. Even if it is, I'm sure it's all locked up in a lab somewhere."
MacGyver smiled. "I'm really proud of you, Kate. And I'm glad you found something you love to do! When your team is finished setting up, come get me, okay? I want to see everything!"
"You'll be the first one to see! So what are you here doing?"
Mac shrugged. "Not much so far. Phoenix offered to provide most of the security for the expo as part of the arrangement with Knight Industries, so I'm mostly in charge of leading the security teams and just keeping an eye on things."
"Ooh, that sounds important."
He chuckled. "Not as important as what you're doing! Luckily, everything's been pretty peaceful so far. Hope it stays that way."
"Me too. I should probably let you get back to work. I just wanted to say hi."
She grabbed MacGyver in another hug and, as she walked away, he called, "Don't forget, let me know as soon as you're ready!"
She smiled over her shoulder. "I will!"
Then MacGyver headed off to check the security at the doors again, smiling to himself. He had a feeling that, with talented experts like Kate on the job, this expo was going to be a huge success.
It was when he was on his way to the doors that he saw it happen. While two of the security guards were checking their radios, someone was heading for the door---someone way too young and small to be a member of the security team. Mac beelined for an intercept course, getting close enough to see that the person was actually wearing a security jacket. However, this person was also obviously a teenager.
Mac stepped close to the boy and gestured for him to stop. "Hey---"
The instant the teenager realized he'd been made, he bolted for the door, with Mac hot on his heels. The two security guards caught on fast and charged after them, but were too slow to make much headway.
MacGyver knew he had to think fast. In a chase like this, even a few seconds were precious and could make all the difference. Especially since this kid probably knew these streets like the back of his hand. But he also knew that the first step to handling any situation was to observe, so that's what he did: he watched as the teenager shoved his way through people waiting for the crosswalk and dodged the traffic coming through the intersection.
Rather than waste time following the same path, MacGyver took a shortcut---albeit a dangerous one. A passing Riverfront streetcar was travelling along the tracks in the right-of-way between the right lane and the sidewalk, right at the same intersection. Mac took the opportunity to hop on…sort of. He kept his feet firmly on the all-too-narrow running board at the bottom of the door and clung to the bright red doorframe as the streetcar took off.
His cheek was pressed up against the yellow door, but his head was turned front so that he could still see the kid running north down the sidewalk. When the streetcar had driven into range, that's when he steeled himself and jumped off, aiming for the teenager still running with his eyes fixed obliviously ahead.
The kid was definitely not expecting a fight from above---or from the side---and he crashed to the ground with the wind knocked out of him.
"Stop running!" MacGyver said, feeling more than a little winded himself after that stunt. "I just want to talk."
"Hey, man, I don't want no trouble!" the kid said fearfully. "I didn't take nothin', I swear!"
"You're not in any trouble. Yet. Name's MacGyver. What's yours?"
"Matt. You want the jacket back? That's cool," the kid said all in a rush, tugging his arms out of the security guard outfit. "Just leave me alone, man. How'd you even catch me like that?"
"Shortcut," Mac replied, catching the jacket as Matt tossed it over. "Okay, Matt, so what were you doing inside the convention center?"
"Nothin', man. Just looking around."
"Wearing a security uniform and trying to hide?"
Matt swallowed hard. "You're not gonna get the cops, are ya?"
"Not if you tell me everything, the whole truth, right now."
Matt nodded feverishly. "Look, I was casing the place, all right? There was this guy I met outside the casino---I work in this place across the street---and long story short, he offered me 500 dollars cash to look around in there and tell him what I found out."
"Who is he?"
"I don't know, man."
"What'd he look like?"
Matt shrugged. "I don't know. I only ever saw him that one time. I remember he had a mustache. Kinda tall, I guess. I was supposed to meet him tonight at Jackson Square. That's all I know."
"Around eight. After dark. He said to just show up there, and he'd find me. Can I go now?"
"Yeah, you can go. Thanks for the help, Matt."
"Yeah, whatever. No cops, right?"
"No cops. Scout's honor. Just stay out of trouble, all right?"
"Sure," and then Matt took off again, this time bounding through a parking lot.
MacGyver sighed and shook his head, staring down at the security jacket in his hands. Then he started to make the walk back to the convention center, wondering how he was going to find a nondescript man at Jackson Square in the middle of the night.
|Posted by: bluegirl 12 February 2020 - 08:04 AM|
| What a coincidence!
"Breaking Point" was a MacGyver / Knight Rider cross-over in my mind for many, many, many years until I aborted the idea only last year... and decided to stay within the MacGyververse. I am so curious to see what you will come up with
|Posted by: Rocket 17 February 2020 - 12:00 AM|
|Can't wait to see who the mysterious moustache belongs to!|
|Posted by: Sanguine 21 February 2020 - 05:03 AM|
Really?! That's incredible!! Now I'm really wondering what that story would've looked like...
|Posted by: Sanguine 21 February 2020 - 05:03 AM|
The mysterious mustache will hopefully not disappoint.
|Posted by: Sanguine 21 February 2020 - 05:03 AM|
|Thank you so much, everyone! This week's installment is a little delayed (obviously) thanks to some unforeseen circumstances, but Part 2 will be posted ASAP!|
|Posted by: Sanguine 26 February 2020 - 06:42 AM|
"Michael, could you be a little more careful, please? You're getting both of us all messy!" KITT said, his vocal processors taking on the hint of a whine.
Michael had long ago learned to block out all but the most serious of KITT's complaints. How his cybernetic friend could be so fastidious was beyond him. "Ah, don't worry, buddy. I promise I'll clean it up." Grinning, he happily tore into a beignet that he held in a piece of thin napkin.
"Would you at least let me drive? You're getting my steering wheel all sticky."
"All right, fine," Michael replied, punching the Auto Cruise button on the dashboard.
"Now the button is sticky too," KITT said mournfully as he took control.
"KITT, I already said I'd clean it up. Don't you believe me?"
"I'd believe you a lot more if my interior weren't covered in powdered sugar. How can you stand to be so messy? It's all over your jacket, too!"
"I can't help it. This has got to be the best thing I've ever eaten. We need to visit the Cafe du Monde more often."
"I don't see why. You brought half of it with you," KITT replied, referring to the tiny paper sack of beignets that Michael had brought along for the ride.
"Hey, don't knock 'em till you try 'em, KITT."
"Very funny, Michael."
"Say, how far are we from the convention center?"
"I'm turning onto the boulevard now. But you know that we're very late."
"Ah, I don't think that the Phoenix guys will care that much."
"Well, I care. I like being punctual, and your little 'snack run,' as you call it, cost us quite a bit of time."
"It's called culinary tourism, KITT, and it was well worth it," Michael said with a smile. Then a big red streetcar passing by in the opposite direction caught his eye. "They sure do have some fancy trolleys around--- Hey!"
"What is it, Michael?" KITT asked, slowing up a little as he approached the traffic light.
"Did you see that? Some guy just jumped off the streetcar!"
"Are you sure?"
"Of course! I just saw it! Look, he's still over there. He tackled some kid on the sidewalk!"
Michael frowned, pressing his face against the window.
"Michael, now the window
"KITT, when you stop at the red light, let's see where this guy is going. I want to follow him and see what was going on."
But much to Michael's surprise, when the traffic cleared and he got another glimpse of the trolley-jumper, the guy was heading back toward the convention center while the kid took off away from him.
Michael squinted and rolled down the window, trying to get a better look. "KITT, what was the name of the security company from the convention center again?"
"United Universal, I believe."
"That guy's carrying a jacket with the same logo. It looks like he's working for the same event we are."
"In that case, they have a highly unorthodox approach to security."
Michael couldn't suppress a smile as he rolled the window up. "So do we."
The Trans Am rolled into the parking lot around the same time that MacGyver reached the convention center doors, but he didn't take any notice of it. He was too busy analyzing the encounter with the teenaged boy from earlier. Who could have paid him to case the convention center? And what did this person want?
He reached for the door handle just as he caught a glimpse of a tall guy in a black leather jacket running towards him. For a second, all MacGyver could do was stare; after all, it wasn't often that he saw someone who looked like a life-sized action figure dashing down the sidewalk like a James Bond movie. Then he positioned himself strategically in front of the door. Whoever this guy was, he wasn't going to get into the convention center that easily.
“Where do you think you’re going?” Action Man asked as he came to a stop inches away from MacGyver.
Mac stared him down. “I could ask you the same question.”
Action Man’s hands drifted to his coat pockets, thumbs hanging out, in a kind of Superman pose that made MacGyver want to roll his eyes. “Yeah, well, I’m the security around here, and I know for a fact that the jacket you’re holding doesn’t belong to you, so why don’t you hand it over?”
Immediately, MacGyver’s hands clenched around the fabric of the security uniform. His mind raced. Who could this guy be? Was he working for the same person who hired Matt?
“I’m the head of security for this convention,” MacGyver replied evenly. “So if you’re claiming to be a member of the team, then I’d love to see some ID.”
Action Man’s brow furrowed in thought. One hand emerged from the jacket pocket and shifted to his jeans. He flipped open his wallet and held it up. “I’m Michael Knight. I’m with the Foundation for Law and Government.”
“MacGyver. Phoenix Foundation.” After seeing the FLAG credentials in Knight’s wallet, MacGyver relaxed...somewhat.
Michael crossed his arms. “My turn. I’d love to see some ID.”
Hesitating for just a fraction of a second, MacGyver grabbed his own well-worn billfold and flashed his Phoenix ID.
A frown tugged at the corners of Knight's mouth. "Then I guess it looks like we're on the same team, huh?"
"I guess we are," MacGyver replied. He never considered himself to be a good poker player, but at the moment, he was doing everything possible not to show his playing cards. Something in his gut told him without a shadow of a doubt that there was more to this Michael Knight character than met the eye---and he was determined to find out what.
"Hey, KITT," Michael whispered into his commlink watch once he'd found a quiet corner of the convention center.
"Hello, Michael. I see you made it into the building."
"Yeah, but something weird's going on here. What's the head of security doing tackling an innocent kid? That guy was definitely suspicious, and I don't care what his ID card says."
"And I'm guessing you have a plan to find out what exactly is going on?"
Michael sighed to himself. "Okay, I'm still working on that part. But listen, I need your help. I want you to get me everything you can on this guy. His name was MacGyver. The first initial was A. If the full first name was on the card, I didn't catch it, so that's all we have to go on."
"That's easy, Michael. Apparently there's only one man named MacGyver working for the Phoenix Foundation."
"So he's a real Phoenix employee? How sure are you about that?"
"Very. It seems that he has a very accomplished record---one that could rival yours, if I may say so."
"Oh, really? Is that so?"
"Yes, it is, Michael. Special Forces Bomb Disposal in Vietnam with 51 successful missions, an advanced degree in science from Western Tech University, and a multitude of increasingly bizarre career choices, such as driving racecars, firefighting, taxi driving, and social work. That's followed by an extensive list of successful missions with the Department of External Services before---"
"Department of what?"
"External Services, Michael."
"Never heard of it."
"From what I'm seeing in these records, I'm sure that this 'DXS' is the type of organization that doesn't want you to hear about it. Should I go on? There's quite a bit more."
"Nah, I think I've heard enough. Okay, so we've got some special forces science genius on our hands. Why is he working security for some think tank conference? The way you make him sound, he could be running this place if he wanted to. What's he doing here and what could he have wanted with that kid?"
"Very good questions, Michael, but it seems for the moment that none of them have answers."
"Well, they will. This guy won't make a move that I don't know about."
"Then it may interest you to know that he's about to walk out the front door."
"I'll be right there! Keep him in your sights, buddy!"
It was almost dusk, with sunset fast approaching, and MacGyver was heading out to Jackson Square. Matt had told him that the man who hired him wanted to meet in the evening around eight, which gave MacGyver time to get there, scout the area, and maybe have the chance to see this mysterious person first. Sure, it wasn't like he could just tackle the first tall mustachioed guy that he saw, but maybe if he could just find a clue of what to look for, he could gain an edge and figure something out.
The shining steeples of St. Louis Cathedral towered like white knights in the distance as MacGyver stepped along the sidewalk, looking across the grass. At this hour, the park was starting to clear out, but there were still several people and families strolling around. MacGyver settled for leaning against a nearby tree; casual enough to avoid provoking suspicion, but also out of the way and with a clear field of vision. Now the only thing he could do was wait and watch…and hope.
Meanwhile, a black Trans Am idled silently nearby, obscured by some landscaping and the oncoming darkness.
"You still have him on scanners, KITT?" Michael asked, leaning forward in the driver's seat.
"Of course, Michael. He's stopped moving for now. He appears to be waiting near that rather large tree over there."
"Waiting for a rendezvous?" Michael wondered aloud. "All right, KITT, you wait here. I'm going to get a better look."
"Michael, be careful."
"I will, buddy."
Michael crept forward through the grass, moving slow and alert to any sudden sounds or movements.
In the distance, he could see the orange glow of a lit cigar…
MacGyver tensed slightly as he saw a bright flash from across the park. The light dimmed after just a second and gave way to a faint orange glow, and MacGyver realized he'd been watching someone light a cigar or a cigarette. He frowned slightly, wondering if that could be Matt's mystery contact or if he was simply looking at someone out for a smoke break.
Right as that thought crossed his mind, the glow began to move closer.
MacGyver remained there by the tree, motionless but prepared to fight or run at a moment's notice.
The glow grew closer, and so did blue wafts of cigar smoke floating gently through the air.
At last, the figure behind the smoke took on definition; male, and tall, and muscular. Someone built like a living action figure.
When he could finally see the man's face, MacGyver's jaw dropped.
The reaction was immediate: the man dropped his cigar to the ground, crushed it beneath a heel, and strode forward until he was inches away from MacGyver.
"I don't know who you are, but I am not, and never will be, Michael Knight," the mustachioed man snapped. Then he eased back ever so slightly, leaning on a diamond-tipped cane in his other hand.
"My name…is Garthe."
|Posted by: bluegirl 26 February 2020 - 12:28 PM|
|OMG, and Mac has no idea what he has gotten himself into...|
|Posted by: Dragondog 27 February 2020 - 09:01 PM|
|I haven't watched Knight Rider since I was I think 8, maybe 9. I need to find old reruns again|
|Posted by: Sanguine 11 March 2020 - 12:44 PM|
| Sorry for the late chapter. I apologize. The past week and a half has just been insane! But you can expect Part Four next week as usual.
MacGyver stared at the figure in front of him, unable to believe his eyes. This man could almost be a perfect body double of Michael Knight.
"Who are you really? Why did you hire Matt? And what do you know about Michael Knight?" MacGyver demanded, figuring that with his back against the wall---or rather, against a tree---he might as well try to get some answers.
Garthe's eyes narrowed and MacGyver could practically see the contemplation inside his mind.
"I already told you that my name is Garthe," he continued. "It's Garthe Knight." He paused for a fraction, presumably to let that sink in. "Michael is what you might call my evil twin. He's crazed by jealousy and obsessed with proving his superiority over me. He'll stop at nothing to destroy me---and he can't stand to lose to me, at anything."
"And what does that have to do with Matt? Why'd you bring him into this?"
"Michael only looks out for his own interests. He believes the world owes him something. I'm certain that he's going to try to steal something from your…technology convention. I hired the boy to look inside and find out what the possible targets might be. I can't risk being seen there myself, as Michael would attack me on sight."
"How can I be certain you're telling the truth?" MacGyver asked.
"You can't," Garthe said, blue gaze never once wavering.
Just then, a twig snapped loudly behind MacGyver's tree. He whirled, shocked to be staring into Michael Knight's face for the second time that night.
"Garthe Knight!" Michael spat. "I should've known. I don't know what you want this time, but whatever it is, you're not getting away with it!"
Garthe's entire body went rigid, every muscle tensed beneath his immaculate white suit. Yet he didn't move. His head tilted backward slightly as he replied, "We'll see who's getting away with what."
Then Garthe's hand twitched around the handle of his cane…
Michael's eyes widened as he saw Garthe's grip shift around the diamond-tipped cane. He knew all too well what Garthe concealed inside that stick of his---a hidden gun!
Knowing that he didn't have a second to lose, Michael charged forward and rammed his shoulder into Garthe, tackling him to the ground. As his opponent struggled to free himself from Michael's grip, Michael kicked the disguised weapon away.
Then something hit him in the head and, for a split second, everything went black.
MacGyver shook his aching hand while Garthe leapt to his feet with catlike grace, retrieving his heavy cane from the ground. His eyes met MacGyver's for just a single moment. Then, he retreated into the darkness.
Mac had no way of knowing that Garthe's innocent-looking cane was really one of the deadly tools that he despised more than anything…
Despite this, MacGyver---still a little suspicious even though it seemed that Michael had, indeed, attacked unprovoked---intended to watch Garthe as he fled and see where exactly he was headed, but then Mac heard a voice calling from...somewhere.
"Michael! Michael, are you all right?"
Michael groaned in response.
MacGyver looked around in every direction, but he didn't see anyone. The voice had a slight accent---New England, maybe Boston. It sounded almost as if it were coming from Michael's watch…
Could the watch be concealing a hidden radio? And if so, with whom was Michael communicating? An accomplice? Or a buyer?
There were far too many questions and not enough answers.
Michael was beginning to pick himself up and MacGyver only had seconds to make a decision.
He decided to go for the direct approach; if it worked with Garthe, maybe it'd work for his twin.
"Who are you? Who are you working for? And what do you want from the technology exposition?" MacGyver asked, standing close enough that he could stop Michael from running if needed---but far enough to be out of slugging range.
Michael got to his feet, rubbing the sore spot on his head. "I could ask you the same questions, along with one more: why are you helping Garthe Knight get away? How much is he paying you?"
"I don't work for Garthe Knight. I work for the Phoenix Foundation. And I need my questions answered."
"Well, your questions are going to have to wait. I have bigger things on my mind right now," Michael said between clenched teeth. Then much to Mac's surprise, he held his wristwatch close to his lips and said, "KITT. I need you."
MacGyver took a step back, needing space to think. This confirmed his suspicions that Michael's watch concealed a secret radio. But that still didn't tell him who the man was contacting or where the contact was.
Then the radiant beams of headlights pierced through the night…
Michael's heart leaped as he saw KITT racing through the darkness, tires churning up grass and clods of soil as the Trans Am sped through the park, arced around the two men in an elegant curve, and halted directly in front of Michael, forcing MacGyver to stumble backwards.
"Am I glad to see you!" Michael said as he dove into the driver's seat. "Get us out of here, buddy!"
"With pleasure, Michael," KITT replied, taking off again. When they reached the road, KITT relinquished control to Michael again.
"I don't know how much of that you heard, KITT, but Garthe Knight is back and we've got to chase him down. Did you happen to catch him in your scanners when he was running away?"
"No, I'm afraid not, Michael. I was able to track him through the park, but something blocked my signal. I believe that the car he got into must have been shielded with lead."
Michael sighed quietly, resisting the urge to hit the steering wheel in frustration. "Well, we can canvass the area anyway. Maybe we can still pick up his trail."
"Good idea," KITT replied, but there was something about the tone of his voice that sent alarms ringing in Michael's head.
"What is it, buddy?"
"Don't give me that."
"...If Garthe Knight has returned, then…"
"Then Goliath may be back also," Michael finished. He reached out and gently patted KITT's dashboard. "It'll be okay, KITT. We beat 'em twice now. We can do it again."
"I hope you're right, Michael."
"Of course I'm right," Michael replied aloud, but in his mind, all he could think was, Me, too, KITT…
|Posted by: Sanguine 27 March 2020 - 10:45 AM|
| Part Four
Garthe looked up at Goliath, hidden away in a Big Easy garage, freshly reconstructed. The molecular bonded shell still had yet to dry. In the past, Goliath had been both his greatest strength and his greatest weakness… But that was soon to change. He rolled the schematics he'd brought with him out on a workbench, lovingly tracing the outline of Goliath with his coarse hands.
"This time, my giant friend, I won't let anything stop me. Not Michael Knight, not the Phoenix Foundation...not even the will of one young scientist. You're going to wake up, my friend. And then, together…we'll be invincible."
MacGyver paced around the telephone in the convention center office, waiting for Pete to call him back. He knew without a doubt that there were too many unknowns in this equation, and he needed them all to be brought to light.
After what seemed like a year, the telephone rang and Mac scooped up the receiver. "Pete?"
"MacGyver, I have the information you asked for," Pete said. "I called Devon Miles and told him exactly what you told me, and we both agree that you're in some serious trouble. Apparently this Garthe Knight character is bad news. He was sent to prison for three life sentences in Africa before getting out and coming back to the States, where an attempted theft of top-secret government weapons put him in prison again, on U.S. soil. Then he escaped again and tried to kidnap a renowned scientist before driving his truck off a cliff. That was the last anyone saw of him until now."
“Oh, man,” Mac muttered. “I don’t believe this. And what about the other guy, his twin? Michael Knight?”
Pete sighed. “Devon told me it was a long story, but Michael is apparently trustworthy. He said he’d trust Michael with his life. I’ve known Devon professionally for a long time, so by reputation alone, I’d say we can rely on his good judgment.” He paused for just a second and chuckled. “You know, the way Devon talked, he made it sound like Michael Knight is almost as good as you, MacGyver.”
MacGyver couldn’t help but smile. “In that case, I guess I owe him an explanation---and maybe an apology, too. I’ll call you again after we’ve gotten this mess sorted out.”
“Sure. Oh, and MacGyver?”
After several hours fruitlessly searching for Garthe, Michael and KITT had given up the search and resolved to start fresh in the morning---beginning with the convention center. After all, Michael may not have known where Garthe was hiding, but he knew for certain where MacGyver would be.
“Are you sure this is a good idea?” KITT asked as he rolled into the convention center’s parking lot again.
“We don’t have all that much choice, buddy,” Michael replied. “If this MacGyver guy knows anything at all about Garthe, we need to know it too.”
He walked into the convention center with his head held high, trying to display more confidence than he felt. Sure, he’d intimidated people who were a lot more imposing than this MacGyver character, but when it came to Garthe…well, with Garthe anything was possible.
He didn’t see MacGyver in the exposition hall, so he decided to check the office. As he approached the door, he slowed his pace when he realized that he could hear a telephone conversation. He snuck close and hovered by the door, straining to hear the call…
A few moments later, the door opened to reveal MacGyver---who had the startled look of a deer in the headlights.
“Were you eavesdropping on me?” MacGyver asked.
“As a matter of fact, I was,” Michael replied, the grin never leaving his face. “And from what I heard, I think we may have gotten off on the wrong foot. My name’s Michael Knight, and I’m the security from the Foundation for Law and Government. Nice to meet you.”
Mac returned the grin and shook Michael’s hand. “MacGyver, Phoenix Foundation. And I owe you an apology.”
“Apology accepted. And I guess I owe you one, too. I thought you were working for Garthe, trying to steal some of this technology stuff.”
“I guess we were both wrong,” Mac said. “The important thing right now is catching this guy and making sure nothing leaves the convention center. You have any leads so far?”
“None,” Michael admitted. “Actually, I came here hoping that you’d be my lead. We’re at square one.”
“Maybe not,” MacGyver said. “Matt said that he met Garthe in a casino down the street. Maybe someone else saw him there, too.”
“Matt?” Michael asked, puzzled for a moment. Then it dawned on him. “That’s who you were chasing earlier. With the streetcar stunt.”
MacGyver nodded. “Garthe had paid him to case the convention center and meet him at Jackson Square. That’s why I was in the park---I was trying to find out what was going on. I guess now I know!”
Michael shook his head. “I guess so. Well, that casino is as good a lead as we’re gonna get. Let’s go.”
“We can take my Jeep,” Mac offered.
Michael smirked. “Thanks, but I’d rather take my car.”
As they walked down the hall and into the main convention center, they were intercepted by a scientist in a lab coat---one with a patch that resembled a knight chess piece.
“Excuse me,” the scientist said, “You’re MacGyver, right?” At his nod, she continued, “Dr. Lafferty pointed you out to me earlier. She wanted me to let you know when our cybernetics display was ready. Well, our display is ready to go, but now we can’t find Kate!”
“I’m sure she’s around here somewhere,” MacGyver said. “Is she helping out with one of the other groups, maybe?”
“No, I already checked. I can’t find her anywhere. I was hoping she’d be with you,” the scientist replied.
Michael, on the other hand, looked like a grenade had just gone off in front of his face. “Oh no. Now it all makes sense.”
“What does?” MacGyver asked, disturbed.
“Dr. Lafferty. I ran into her a couple of times at some Foundation fundraisers. She’s a computer expert, right?”
“The very best,” the scientist said. “With her on the team, Knight Industries has been making exponential leaps with our artificial intelligence research.”
Michael grabbed MacGyver’s arm and led him away from the scientist and the people milling about. “What if Garthe wasn’t trying to case this place for something to steal? What if he was looking for someone?”
Mac’s eyes widened. “You think he kidnapped Kate? Pete told me he’s done that in the past… But why? What would he do with her?”
“She’s an artificial intelligence expert… I think I know exactly what Garthe plans to do, and we can’t let it happen. It’s hard to explain, but we don’t have any time! Come on!” As Michael jogged for the doors, he again spoke into his watch: “KITT, meet us by the front doors. We’ve gotta find Garthe and fast!”
“Dr. Kate Lafferty,” a voice rumbled in the darkness. “Graduated early from high school. Multiple university degrees. Groundbreaking cybernetics research. Contracting for the Department of Defense… And now you build artificially intelligent computers for Knight Industries.” A slight pause. “Your credentials are impressive, Doctor.”
“Who are you?” Kate groaned, struggling to sit up. Her head was spinning, her mind felt fuzzy. She felt a firm surface beneath her---a cot, she guessed. And a wall beside her---cold and metallic. Her heart began to race. “What did you give me? Where am I? And what do you want?”
“My name is Garthe Knight. Where you are and how you got here aren’t important. What’s important...is why you’re here.”
“Whatever it is you want, you’re not getting it. Now let me go,” Kate demanded. She was leaning back against the wall to keep herself sitting, but she could feel her head beginning to clear and her strength return. She just had to stay calm and think of a way out.
Garthe chuckled. “Not yet. But I have no intention of harming you. As a matter of fact, I admire your work. I have a design that I want you to complete for me…and as soon as you do, you’ll have your freedom.”
“No way. I’m not doing it. And you can’t keep me here. I’ll be missed.” She jutted out her chin despite not being visible in the dark. “MacGyver will help me escape and when he does, you’ll be sorry.”
“I wouldn’t count on it, Doctor. Your friend MacGyver is taking off down the wrong trail. It’ll be some time before he misses you…and I have no fear of him when he does.” Footsteps approached her cot, and finally, Garthe switched on a flashlight, illuminating the darkness. “You’ll find the unfinished designs and the equipment you need here in this room. If anything is missing, make a list of what you want and I’ll get it for you. I’ll be surveilling you constantly, Doctor, so don’t try anything foolish.”
Kate bit her lip, weighing her options. She could try to push him and run, but he was too big and she couldn’t even see where the door was at. No… Her best option would be to play along and use whatever tools he’d given her to devise a way out. “All right. Whatever you say…for now.”
“Good,” Garthe said with a hollow smile. “Get to work, Doctor. The sooner you finish Goliath, the sooner you can leave.” He tossed the flashlight to her and exited the far end of the room. It looked like he’d opened a double door…a door made of metal.
In fact, the entire room was metal, including the floor and ceiling. As she shone the flashlight around, she saw a makeshift workspace with a variety of tools along the wall across from her cot, along with some battery-powered work lamps. The designs were unrolled prominently, where she could easily see them. She crossed the narrow space in a few steps and glanced over the blueprints.
Kate’s breath caught in her throat. “What is he building…?”
“Are you ever going to explain who’s on the other end of that radio?” MacGyver asked as he followed Michael outside, where the black Trans Am was waiting for them.
“It’s probably better just to let him introduce himself,” Michael replied. Something in his tone made it sound like he was almost laughing.
Mac shrugged and hopped into the passenger seat of Michael’s car, surprised to find it empty.
Michael grinned at him expectantly as he slid into the driver’s seat.
MacGyver sighed. “I’m guessing you get this question a lot, but who drove the car over here and what’s with all these buttons and lights?”
“KITT, you wanna answer that one, buddy?” Michael asked proudly.
“Happy to, Michael,” KITT replied, the red lights of his voice modulator flashing.
MacGyver’s eyes went wide. “You have the radio wired to the car, too?”
“Hardly,” KITT replied dryly. “I’m the voice of Knight Industries Two Thousand’s microprocessor. K.I.T.T. for easy reference, or KITT if you prefer.”
Mac couldn’t do anything but just sit there for a second, at a complete loss for words. “Name’s MacGyver,” he stammered.
“Pleased to make your acquaintance,” KITT replied. “Your achievements are very impressive, Mr. MacGyver. I see you have a strong background in engineering and science.”
“Yeah, but not like this,” Mac said, struggling to take it all in. “This is incredible. How many years of research did this take? Who built this? Am I really talking to an actual artificial intelligence?”
Michael laughed. “It took a lot of people a lot of time to make this dream come true, but you and KITT can talk shop later. Right now, the important thing is finding Garthe and rescuing Dr. Lafferty!”
“We’re on the same team now, I presume?” KITT said.
“That’s right, pal. MacGyver says that Garthe’s been seen at the local casino. Maybe he’s still there. Let’s check it out!”
KITT pulled up his scanners as Michael pulled out of the drive. “Right away, Michael.”
Kate knew she didn’t have a single second to lose. She dug through the workbench and set aside the components she’d need: soldering tools, black electrical tape, a long screw, resistors and capacitors, and lots and lots of electrical wire. She grabbed a radio integrated circuit out of the pile of computer parts, pried the quartz off the computer’s soundboard, and tore a balun out of the computer’s modem. Garthe hadn’t gone through her pockets as far as she could tell, which meant that she still had her wallet---and luckily she found three pennies tucked in the change pocket.
The last thing she needed was a battery out of the flashlight.
She had no way of knowing for certain whether Garthe’s claim of constant surveillance was the truth or an intimidating bluff, but either way, she had to work quickly. Her only chance would be to let someone---preferably MacGyver---know where she was, and to do that, she needed a radio.
First, she soldered the three wires of the integrated circuit onto the backs of the three pennies. Then she added the capacitors and resistors, soldering them in various places together and onto the pennies in just the right pattern. With some metal electrodes and a shred of aluminum foil, she rigged the quartz into an earpiece, which she promptly wired and soldered to her three-penny radio. She popped the piece of cardboard out of the center of the tape roll and wrapped it in wire to make a tuning coil, and then the last thing she needed to do was wire and solder the battery. For a second, she breathed out a sigh of relief---the radio was done.
But there was still the problem of getting the signal to transmit. Inside this big metal room, she was essentially trapped in a Faraday cage---meaning that no radio signal could go in or out.
“Okay, Kate, think,” she muttered to herself. “Surface waves… Low-level electromagnetic radiation can still get through a Faraday cage as long as it’s going along the surface.” She grabbed the long screw that she had put into her pile of parts earlier and sighed. “This isn’t an antenna, but it’ll have to do.” She wrapped the screw in wire to make an antenna, wired the blunt end to the balun, and attached the whole thing to the radio. Then she held her makeshift contraption as close to the metal wall as she possibly could without touching it, the sharp end of the screw aiming at the wall.
“Let’s see if my transmitter can escape this cage…”
|Posted by: Sanguine 27 March 2020 - 10:46 AM|
|Stay tuned for the last chapter next week!|
|Posted by: bluegirl 27 March 2020 - 12:02 PM|
| Somehow I knew it wouldn´t be over in four parts...
Love where you are taking this - love the way Mac and KITT got to know each other
|Posted by: Sanguine 17 April 2020 - 11:51 AM|
| Finally to the end!!! Sorry for the delay... This chapter ended up being *much* longer than expected (as did the rest of the story!). One thousand million thanks with sprinkles on top to my wonderful friend, Uniquelyjas, for getting me unstuck and being my advisor for so much of this process!!
"Michael, I'm picking up something very unusual," KITT said.
"Oh, yeah? What is it, buddy?"
"The signal is very weak, but it appears to be Morse code." After a beat, KITT added, "Michael, I believe it's an SOS!"
"Kate! It's gotta be!" Mac exclaimed.
"KITT, set a course for that signal! We're going to find Garthe and get Dr. Lafferty back!"
KITT surged through the streets of New Orleans until he closed in on what appeared to be an old warehouse. Though surrounded by a few, mostly older-looking businesses, the warehouse itself appeared to be vacant. KITT discreetly parked behind the building and Michael jumped out, motioning for MacGyver to follow.
"Michael, wait," KITT called through the comlink. "What if this is a trap?"
"It's possible, but there's only one way to find out. And besides, we have to rescue Dr. Lafferty."
MacGyver grabbed Michael's arm before he could get too far. "I'm with KITT. It could be a trap and we have no idea what we're rushing into. We need to think this through."
Michael hesitated. "Okay. What do you say we do?"
"I say we take a look around before we rush through the front door." He gestured to the side of the building. "I noticed some windows when KITT was driving us in. It looks like they've been covered over with tar paper, maybe from the inside. We can look in from there and see the situation before we charge in."
Michael slowly nodded. "All right. Let's do it."
MacGyver and Michael circled to the side of the building, the windows right where MacGyver said they would be. Michael seemed to tense with every step.
"Do you see any broken panes, or do we need to make our own way in?" Michael asked.
"Here, in the bottom corner," Mac replied, reaching for a piece of broken brick off the asphalt and clearing away excess shards of cracked glass from the vandalized window.
Michael shook his head as Mac used his knife to cut away the tar paper. "Never thought I'd be happy to see some teenage vandalism. Okay, what do you see?"
"Not much," Mac replied with a frown. "It's dark in there. No movement. And I definitely don't see Kate."
"Let me see." Michael peered through the window himself, and in the darkened warehouse he saw a distinctive huge, rectangular outline that made his heart sink to the litter-strewn pavement. "Goliath is in there."
"You'll see. Come on. I'm willing to bet anything that Garthe is keeping her inside there."
When the two of them reached the door, MacGyver held up a hand, signaling for Michael to wait. "There's a tripwire on this door. Garthe must've booby-trapped it."
Michael crouched next to Mac, who was examining the trap. "You think that means he'll be gone for a while?"
"Let's hope so," MacGyver replied. He was already using his knife to dismantle the tripwire. The trap was simple: a strong but thin piece of cord attached to a small metal capsule. Mac held up the capsule for Michael to see.
Michael frowned. "What's that?"
"It's a sound grenade. If we'd walked through that wire, the movement would've been enough to pull the pin and---well, let's just say it wouldn't be good for our eardrums."
Michael winced. "Good catch. You see any other traps so far?"
"No. I think this warehouse is as safe as it's going to get."
Michael reached for the door handle and pushed his way inside. "Then let's get your scientist back."
The light from the doorway cast a gray pallor over the warehouse, which was completely cleared out except for the immense truck trailer looming over them. Standing in its shadow was like standing on the dark side of the moon.
For reasons that he couldn't describe, MacGyver felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand up as he looked at the colossal machine.
"Garthe put her in the back of Goliath, I just know it," Michael muttered as he circled to the back of the truck, testing the latch. He couldn't get it to budge. "Come try this, will ya?"
"MacGyver, is that you?" came a muffled voice from within.
"Kate!" MacGyver shouted. He was about to bang on the side of the truck, but Michael grabbed his wrist at the last second.
"You don't want to do that," Michael said quickly. "Trust me."
"MacGyver, I'm so glad you're here!" Kate cried out. "Can you open the door? I don't know what that guy did to it, but it's locked or something."
Michael tested the truck door again, frowned, and stepped back to look at it one more time. "It's definitely not going to open, and I don't want to risk using KITT's laser in such close quarters…especially with Dr. Lafferty trapped inside. But that may be our only option. The molecular bonded shell is too tough for anything else to do much good."
MacGyver ran his hands over the door and the latch, feeling things out, testing them. "I have an idea."
"What if we poured a small amount of sulfuric acid on the latch? It wouldn't take much to eat through both the shell and the metal. Once the lock is broken, then Kate's free."
"Good idea! The only problem is that none of us have any acid."
MacGyver glanced back to the warehouse door, envisioning the parking lot beyond. "That isn't entirely true…"
"Michael, please tell me you aren't being serious!" KITT exclaimed after the two of them pitched MacGyver's plan.
"I wouldn't need to drain your battery entirely," MacGyver said. "I only need enough acid to make a concentrate."
"And your power packs will compensate for it until we can get back to Bonnie," Michael added.
“But, Michael, some of my systems will be compromised! At the very least, I’ll be operating at less than peak efficiency, especially with regards to some of my more delicate functions, including my scanners.”
Michael patted KITT’s bumper apologetically. "Buddy, I'm sorry, but Garthe could be back any minute. We really don't have time to argue…"
"All right," the long-suffering AI said, popping the hood open to allow MacGyver access to his precious inner workings. "But Bonnie will hear about this, Michael."
Michael flinched just thinking about what she would say when she found out. He cleared his throat. "Okay, MacGyver, what can I do, huh?"
MacGyver glanced up from the car battery and said, "Down the street, I saw a few little shops. Run over there and find me something made out of Pyrex. A dish, a measuring cup, it doesn't matter. As long as it's made of borosilicate glass."
"Boro what? You know what? Never mind. Pyrex. I'll be right back." Michael hurried off down the street, muttering to himself.
Meanwhile MacGyver grinned as he gently unhooked the battery cables. "Is your friend always so high-strung?"
"Only where Garthe is concerned," KITT replied. "Although personally, I think that metal monster Goliath is a bigger worry."
"I wouldn't think you'd be worried about anything," MacGyver said with a smile. "After all, brains win out over brawn any day."
"That's a very astute observation, Mr. MacGyver," KITT replied. "I think I'm beginning to like you already."
Mac beamed. "Feeling's mutual." He patted the bumper as he rose from his knees. "Okay, battery's ready to be siphoned whenever Michael gets back with that glass. There's just one more thing we need…"
Luckily, in New Orleans and in a spot not far from some bars and restaurants, that one thing wasn't too hard to find. Some quick scouting along the side of the road and behind a couple buildings, and Mac found what he was looking for: an old glass wine bottle with a screw-on cap.
He held it up to the sunlight and, satisfied that there were no chips or cracks, hurried back to KITT.
By the time he got there, Michael was returning as well.
"Okay, I found you a big measuring cup. I hope that'll do," Michael greeted him.
Mac nodded. "Perfect. I'll pour the acid from the battery inside. How long does it take KITT's laser to warm up?"
Michael grinned. "Not long at all, right, pal?"
"Great. When I finish pouring the acid, KITT can use his laser to heat the glass. We want to boil the acid enough that as much of the water as possible will evaporate. That'll convert the battery acid into a higher concentration of sulfuric---and we can use that to open the truck."
"No problem at all," KITT said. "I'm ready when you are, MacGyver."
Mac grinned, replaced KITT's battery, and stepped back. "Okay, KITT. Take it away!"
Within seconds, a single thin ray of intense red light shot out from the Trans Am and fell directly onto the cup of acid. In moments, the cup was boiling, with clouds of steam rolling away.
MacGyver watched the cup closely and, when the steam was replaced by an eerie white vapor, he motioned for KITT to cut the laser. The light faded and the cup of acid began to cool.
"Did it work?" Michael asked.
"It sure did," MacGyver said, fishing a bandana out of his jacket pocket and tying it around his nose and mouth. Then he took off the jacket and wrapped the material around his hand so he could grab the measuring cup. Slowly, with the utmost caution, he poured the now-concentrated sulfuric acid into the open wine bottle. Then he screwed the cap on and nodded to the warehouse. "Let's break open a truck trailer."
Michael stared breathlessly as Mac poured a trickle of sulfuric over the latch on the trailer door. He was glad to be standing well away from the fumes as a curl of white vapor rose in the air while an unsettling hiss pierced the quiet of the warehouse.
With a mixture of horror and fascination, Michael watched as the acid slowly ate its way through the molecular bonded shell and corroded the metal below.
When it seemed as though the latch was weakened enough, he reached above the acid-scorched area and pried open the door, with help from Kate shoving from the inside. The metal doors swung wide and Kate jumped out, cradling blueprints in her arms.
“Thanks for the help,” Kate said with a grin that quickly faded as she unfurled Garthe’s design. “Anybody here know why some crazy guy wants to put a computer in a semi truck?”
Mac’s gaze shifted between the designs and Michael. “Garthe wants to make his own KITT?”
“It looks that way,” Michael replied somberly, gesturing for them to follow him out of the warehouse. “And can you imagine the damage Goliath could do if it had all of KITT’s intelligence and none of his soul? Following Garthe’s every command?”
“I can,” rumbled a voice as a large figure stepped into the warehouse doorway, blocking the exit and the light. A cruel smile twisted Garthe Knight’s features as he watched the three people in front of him backing away. “I can imagine a world where you’re finally eradicated, Michael Knight. As if you ever deserved that name in the first place. When Goliath is awoken, you’re going to be the first thing I obliterate. Then I’m going to destroy the Knight Industries Two Thousand. And then… Then I’m going to crush everything my father ever touched.”
“You’re crazier than you were last time I saw you, Garthe,” Michael said, hoping to stall for enough time to find a way out—or at least enough time for KITT to realize what was happening and cross the parking lot.
“Crazy? Not at all. What’s crazy is that you still believe you can get in my way—or in Goliath’s.” Teeth bared, Garthe lifted his cane, pointing it directly at Michael’s chest.
Michael shifted his posture, prepared to move or defend himself the second Garthe moved.
Kate put on a brave face, determined not to let this maniac get the best of her or her friends.
But no one could anticipate MacGyver.
Before Garthe could even twitch, Mac hurled the glass bottle onto the concrete floor right in front of Garthe’s feet. As the bottle shattered, sending tiny green shards skittering across the floor, he motioned to his two companions and shouted, “Run!”
When Michael took off after MacGyver—not wanting to find himself once again at the end of Garthe’s concealed gun—the last thing he saw was Garthe jumping backwards, recoiling in horror from the eerie white vapors and the acid that was sizzling and hissing on the floor.
“C’mon, there’s got to be another door!” MacGyver said.
“KITT, I need you! Garthe’s back!” Michael half-shouted into the comlink, hoping that even if KITT’s sensor power was down, he’d still be in communications range.
He got his answer when a sleek black Trans Am crashed through the wall of the warehouse, crushing the cinderblocks into powder.
“Whoa!” Kate squeaked.
“We have another door!” Michael yelled in relief. “Get in and let’s go!”
Michael and KITT sped away from the warehouse as soon as the car doors closed.
“Thanks, pal,” Michael said breathlessly.
“No need to thank me, Michael. As a matter of fact, I apologize. I should’ve caught Garthe on my scanners, but my compromised battery is affecting my abilities. I just hope that my ability to outmatch that hulking heap of metal isn’t compromised, too.”
KITT’s words were punctuated by the loud crack of bullets ricocheting off his molecular bonded shell.
MacGyver and Kate twisted to look through the back window as Garthe fired off another shot, teeth bared in rage.
“The cane is a gun?” Mac yelped.
“Yeah, it’s one of Garthe’s many trademarks,” Michael replied, distracted. “Don’t worry, bullets can’t damage KITT.”
“No, but that gargantuan goon Goliath can,” KITT reminded them. “May I suggest that we put as much distance as possible between us and them?”
“I couldn’t agree more,” Michael said.
“Wait a second,” Kate said slowly as she watched the red bars of KITT’s vocal processor flash on the dashboard. “Is that…?”
Mac grinned. “That’s right, Kate. That’s a talking, thinking computer.”
“A real artificial intelligence?! This is light-years ahead of anything Knight Industries has me working on!”
“It’s a pleasure to meet you also, Dr. Lafferty,” KITT said. “I’ve been following your research in cybernetics, and I must say I’ve been very impressed with some of your contributions to the field.”
Before Kate could begin asking the flood of questions racing through her mind, Michael interrupted, “KITT, I’m all for you making new friends, but the priority is Garthe and Goliath. Now, I think I might have an idea…”
The rumble of Goliath’s engine was the sound of thunder in the warehouse. Garthe could feel the raw power pulsing all around him as he wrapped his hands around the steering wheel and pressed down on the accelerator. Goliath smashed through the already damaged wall of the warehouse, blasting through the cinderblocks and sending the rest of the wall caving in. Garthe didn’t even look back at his makeshift garage; his sole focus was crushing that black Trans Am.
He caught a glimpse of the car, taillights flashing, as it swerved onto Kentucky Street. Lip curled back in a sneer, he reached up with one hand to blare the horn.
Garthe wanted Michael Knight to know that he was coming for him…and this time, he wouldn’t fail.
“How close are we, KITT?” Michael asked, not daring to look in the rearview mirror as he pushed the car’s accelerator down further, barrelling southbound down the side street.
“Approximately point-seven miles, Michael,” KITT replied, zooming in on the street map gracing his dashboard screen. “We’ll be there in a matter of minutes.”
“Perfect,” Michael muttered. “Is he still chasing us?”
A quick check, and MacGyver flinched as he saw the massive truck still in pursuit behind them. “Unfortunately, yes. Are you sure this plan is gonna work?”
“Do you really want an answer to that question?”
MacGyver and Kate shared a concerned glance. “I was afraid you’d say something like that.”
Michael abruptly jerked the Trans Am to the right, making a sharp turn onto Poland Avenue. “Let’s see Garthe make that turn,” he said, more to himself than anyone else. “That should buy us a few more seconds.”
MacGyver kept his eyes on Goliath as the truck slowed just a fraction to make the turn. He could see Garthe’s outline behind the windshield as the madman reached for the horn again, the bellowing of the truck seeming to send a shockwave through everyone inside the Trans Am. Despite MacGyver’s newfound knowledge of KITT’s advanced capabilities, the AI seemed small and fragile compared to Goliath.
And yet…he still believed what he’d told KITT earlier: brains over brawn, any day.
“Michael, we’re approaching the wharf,” KITT said.
“Okay, buddy,” Michael said breathlessly. “Let’s hope that Garthe doesn’t realize where he’s at…”
Garthe’s eyes narrowed as he slowed up slightly to follow the Trans Am around the sharp turn. Everything disappeared except for the road ahead of him and the power of Goliath. The only thing that mattered was revenge, nothing more.
And he was determined to get it.
He accelerated the truck as fast as it would go, blue eyes icy and tempestuous as he stared at the Knight Industries Two Thousand.
How he would revel in crushing it, the last remnants of his father’s pathetic dreams… Dreams that he would suffocate just as surely as his own dreams had died a slow, painful death in Africa.
He could almost taste the victory close at hand, he could see the little T-top just barely beyond the reach of Goliath’s wheels…
“Now, KITT!” Michael shouted as KITT took control, sliding himself out of the way of the truck faster than any human reflex could move.
KITT swerved across the wharf and circled back with impossible speed---just in time to watch the truck trailer fly off the edge of the concrete and sink down into the Mississippi River, sucked down into 200 feet of muddy water. With eerie glugs and the groans of metal bending beneath the pressures of the swollen river, the massive machine twisted in on itself and finally slipped beneath the choppy current.
Michael jumped out of the car and raced to the edge of the wharf, MacGyver close behind.
“Do you see Garthe anywhere?” Michael asked in a rush.
“No,” Mac replied, searching the waters and hoping to catch even a glimpse. “I think he’s gone.”
Michael gave him a pained look and, just once, a shake of his head. “He’s never gone.”
MacGyver knew that feeling all too well, so he didn’t say a word; he just clasped his hand around Michael’s shoulder.
A few hours later, Michael, MacGyver, and KITT watched as local authorities hauled the remains of Goliath out of the Mississippi. Mud, water, and debris poured from the cracked windshield and one of the trailer doors was missing.
KITT’s scanner light sped up its track across his bumper as the three of them looked on. “I must say, after seeing Goliath like this, that monster doesn’t seem quite so intimidating anymore.”
“Yeah, but personally, I’ll be glad to see it melted down into scrap,” Michael said. “From bumper to bumper.”
As he spoke, one of the state police standing nearby approached them. “You’re Knight and MacGyver?”
“That’s right,” MacGyver said.
The state trooper took off his hat and wiped his bald head. “I got the rundown on the situation earlier, so I have an update for you that I know you’re not going to like.”
Michael drew in a breath through his teeth. “Let me guess: you didn’t find Garthe Knight’s body.”
“That’s right. There’s no sign of him in the truck or in the area where the truck fell in. Our best guess is that he was swept downriver somewhere, and we’ve alerted the proper authorities to search the surrounding area until we find him. Or what’s left of him.”
“You’re not going to find him,” Michael sighed.
“Maybe this time, he finally learned his lesson,” MacGyver suggested, hoping that it was true even as, in the back of his mind, he remembered his own experiences with another madman who just wouldn’t stay gone…
“Well, I think I would like to be the optimist for once,” KITT said. “After all, this is the third time we’ve proven that the mind is superior to any kind of physical size or strength---even facing up against a bruiser like Goliath.”
Michael and MacGyver laughed. “You know something?” Michael said.
“What is it?” MacGyver asked, smiling wide enough to crinkle the corners of his eyes.
Michael grabbed Mac’s shoulder good-naturedly. “I think this is the start of a beautiful friendship.”
“And that’s everything that happened, Pete,” MacGyver said, wrapping up his explanation of all that had occurred in the past few hours. He was sitting in the office at the convention center again, telephone receiver in hand, with Michael and Kate sitting across from him. “Can you believe it?”
“Knowing you, MacGyver? Yes. I can,” Pete answered, only half joking. “Now, how is Dr. Lafferty holding up?”
MacGyver smiled. “I think she’s doing pretty well, considering that she got a call from Devon Miles a little while ago, offering her an even better position with Knight Industries than she had before.”
“With a giant research grant, too,” Kate said with a grin. “And I’m determined to work with KITT again, and I’m not taking no for an answer!”
Michael laughed. “He won’t either, believe me. He’s very impressed with you, Doctor.”
MacGyver chuckled and returned his focus to Pete. “She says she’s great, Pete, and she’s really happy.”
“I’m glad to hear that, MacGyver, I really am. So when do I get to talk to this notorious stunt driver of yours?”
MacGyver covered the receiver with his palm and quirked an eyebrow at his new friend. “Well, Michael, how would you like to meet my boss?”
Michael grinned. “Only if you’ll help me explain this mess to Devon.”
MacGyver returned the grin and passed him the telephone. “Deal!”
“Hello? This is Michael Knight,” he said, leaning further back in his chair.
“Pete Thornton. I, uh, heard that you tend to get yourself in almost as much trouble as MacGyver.”
Michael chuckled. “Sometimes, but usually nothing I can’t explain my way out of.”
“Yes, well, you don’t need to explain this one, Michael,” came a familiar, smug, and British voice over the line. “My good friend Peter was kind enough to put Mr. MacGyver on speakerphone.”
“Devon?!” Michael laughed, covered the receiver, and winked at Mac. “How do you like that? I guess we weren’t the only ones to make new friends today!”
If you'd like to learn more about New Orleans or any of the creative MacGyverisms used by Mac and Kate in this story, please check out my VS Bibliographies for more info: https://archiveofourown.org/works/21861313
|Posted by: Dragondog 18 April 2020 - 03:18 AM|
|Didn't know you were on AO3. Subscribed|
|Posted by: Sanguine 18 April 2020 - 09:31 AM|
Aww, thank you! You're very kind. Yeah, AO3 is a very recent addition for me! One of my buddies from Psychfic, insert56 (Zena_Xina), is on AO3 and she convinced me to make an account over there too.
|Posted by: Dragondog 18 April 2020 - 11:54 PM|
Yeah, some friends put pressure on me to check it out, and it seems pretty nice. I'll probably submit some of my own fan fiction once I replace my laptop