The E-GaDs video feed shows a dark-skinned man in an impeccably-tailored charcoal suit seated behind a massive oak desk; his expression is taciturn and resolute. A circular wood-paneled wall partition in subtle ambient lighting curves around to frame the man and the desk. A crystal tumbler sits close at hand next to a bottle of 50-year Balvenie Scotch; papers and manila folders are scattered around a slimline desktop computer beside a low, green-shaded brass lamp. Elijah Sharpe’s eyes meet the lens of the camera, and he begins to speak.
“Good morning. Explosive allegations and accompanying evidence have been released to the media in recent weeks exposing a dark proposition for humanity: that the things we have learned to fear from mythology, ghost stories, faerie tales, and urban legends are all, to some extent, real.
“The Patrons’ machinations have resulted in tens of thousands of civilian deaths as documented by Contingent operatives in the reports I am about to disseminate to every press outlet I can contact. These reports will also be available for download at www.asi.net/monstersarereal/, and I’ve mirrored these files elsewhere in case someone attempts to lock down this information and keep it out of the public eye.
“I realize that this decision may not be the most prudent one for ASI given the security clearances that our work necessitates. That said, some things are far more important than profit. Working alongside myself, Trent Remington, Chester Clarke, and Dr. Adrian Skaar, the many brave people who have joined our cause have worked clandestinely against forces that seek to enslave, murder, or otherwise damage the whole of humanity.
“To some people, these confirmations of facts will amount to a confession on my part—and some people with a different agenda counter to our own will use this opportunity to brand us as domestic terrorists.
“Good. I want our enemies to be terrified. They ought to be terrified. The Contingent boasts personnel from among the best and brightest of our nation: seasoned combatants, brilliant scientific minds, engineers of unparalleled skill, and excellent negotiators. I am proud of each and every one of you, both those who have served in the past and are serving now—and especially those who have given their lives in service to our organization and the American people.
“To the members of the Contingent, I thank you all for your service. Each of you has been the candle in the darkness lighting the way for the lost, a voice for the voiceless crying out for help, a hunter keeping vigil through the long night—and some of you have done it for far longer than others. I know the duty weighs on you, and I wish I could tell you that it will be over soon, but the truth is that the work may never be done. Yet, with our agenda exposed—with the reality of the world unmasked—we are no longer alone. We are stronger than we ever have been before, because now the world knows the truth—and the true patriots among us now have the choice to step up and fight alongside us.
“In this dire hour of struggle, I ask you to consider this: in all my years as a hunter, I have yet to meet an enemy without a weakness. Nothing is unkillable, and few entities, if any, are truly immortal. Victory is never unattainable; it is merely a matter of using the resources and knowledge at hand in order to secure that victory.
“Today, every last man, woman, and child in America is the Contingent—and we will always fight to protect our own. With your continuing dedication and perseverance, we will prevail. Thank you, and may God bless America.”