"Shiloh Jones is a dangerous adversary, gentlemen. Please, do not let her gender fool you into believing otherwise, should you happen to encounter her in the course of a mission. THRUSH let her go several years ago, and now she became an independent agent, available to the highest bidder."
Napoleon smiled with a condescending curl at the corner of his mouth. He had heard this type of thing before from men like Rodney Jameson. Men who hadn't been in the field and who only taught about the enemy without having ever confronted him. Or her.
"She was most recently observed acting as the courier for a Chinese warlord named..."
"Excuse me, um... Mr. Jameson." Napoleon Solo was a smart ass, something everyone on Survival Island knew and accepted. They also knew this would not end well... for Rodney Jameson.
"Yes, mister... uh..." Jameson moved out from behind the podium. He walked with a limp and leaned heavily on the cane that was hanging on the back of a nearby chair. Holding onto the edge of the podium, he looked at Napoleon with an air of slight exasperation.
"Solo. Napoleon Solo." The younger man said it slowly. He wanted Jameson to remember him when he got back to New York.
"Yes Mr. Solo?" Napoleon caught some snickers from the row behind him. He enjoyed putting these actors in their places.
"Well, sir... that is, Mr. Jameson... ' It was all Napoleon could do to not bust out laughing.
"Just how is that you know how dangerous this Shiloh woman actually is? Have you had a personal encounter with her? You know, like... hand to hand combat?" Impertinent was a word that would be associated with the name Napoleon Solo for a very long time.
Jameson smiled now, he'd heard about Solo from Mr. Cutter. The young man was capable and talented, but he didn't know as much as he thought he knew.
"Actually, I have met her on more than one occasion." That surprised Napoleon, but it didn't stop him from continuing on with his little performance. He enjoyed keeping everyone entertained.
"Really? I hadn't heard you were a field agent. How did you do against Shiloh? Any stories you can give us to help us if we ever run into her? In the field, that is.''
A young man named Gilbert Torrance was sitting next to Napoleon and, as he perused a little more of the outline for this particular presentation, he noticed a footnote about Rodney Jameson that he was pretty sure Solo hadn't bothered to read.
"Psst... Solo, you better..." Napoleon ignored Torrance and waited for Jameson to respond.
Rodney Jameson looked at Napoleon and then out over the candidates who were all hoping to survive, literally, Survival School. Their faces were solemn, for the most part, and Jameson knew some of them would make it to Agent II status, serve well in some instances, possibly die in the service of the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement.
Others, like Solo, would rise to the top in spite of himself. He had all of the traits necessary to go into the field and succeed, his military record indicated it and his performance on the Island gave everyone involved a peek into the future of UNCLE, with men like Napoleon Solo leading the way.
"Mr. Solo, are you familiar with the Gatner Gambit Affair? It is on the recommended reading list that you received at the onset of your training." Jameson looked again at the twenty-three faces and could tell who had read that file and who, Mr. Solo among them, had not.
"Well, should you get around to it, you will follow the trail of an assassin who was hired to kill the Prime Minister of England. She led several UNCLE agents on a merry chase across Europe as she evaded and disappeared a dozen or more times. Interpol, UNCLE and MI5 all had turns at losing Shiloh, until finally we... yes, I was there Mr. Solo.' The room was very quiet at this point, with furtive glances directed at Napoleon registering in his peripheral vision.
"We cornered her, or so we thought, in a pub just on the edge of London's Saville Row. She was making her way towards a prestigious establishment where the PM was scheduled to be. I was among the agents who had her in our sights, and just as she emerged from the building two of our men came into view and ordered her to surrender."
The room was still, a sense of anticipation creating a type of electricity that could only be generated by the truth, and the eye witness who lived it.
"Shiloh had an accomplice, another woman whose presence in the pub had garnered no thought whatsoever. Just as our team were closing in on our objective, this other woman, a blonde dressed in black, threw a smoke bomb into the street, hiding both of them from sight. Two shots were fired into the smoke, and one return shot from within. Our men missed, but that single shot struck me, the proof of which is in the limp with which I now walk."
Napoleon swallowed hard, felt a few drops of sweat fall down the side of his face. He had misjudged a man, a hero. Now that he looked more closely, Jameson was probably only a few years older than he was.
"Mr. Jameson, please, I... Please accept my apology for, um... for being disrespectful. You were a hero on that day, in spite of losing Shiloh."
That made Jameson laugh, something that unnerved Napoleon slightly. Was he laughing at his apology?
"Mr. Solo, I accept your apology, but we didn't lose Shiloh. We caught her and handed her over to the British Intelligence community. Remember, she was a hired hand, so when MI5 recruited her for their own service, she gladly accepted a deal. The other woman, however, was never apprehended. She was younger than Shiloh, probably a teenager who was in need of a guiding hand and only too willing to apprentice with someone like Shiloh Jones. I have heard that the other woman has since been enticed to join THRUSH. Some of you may run into her in the future."
There was a murmur of conversation now in the room, and Napoleon was less embarrassed than he might have thought a few minutes before. His curiosity wasn't completely satisfied however.
"So, Mr. Jameson, where is Shiloh now? Why did you warn us about her if she's basically on the same side.?"
Yes, Solo was definitely going to rise to the top.
"Did I say she'd kill you? No, only that she is a dangerous adversary, and that you should be aware. If you happen to run into her she will be working for the British, but she won't tolerate interference from any other agency in pursuit of her target. Shiloh Jones is Double O agent, as in 007. We don't know what her number is, but be sure she has one."
Now Napoleon was very curious as to this woman's current state of employment. He'd heard of the 00 agents, but this was fascinating. And what about the other woman, the blonde? Now that would be interesting if he should run into her after he became an agent.
And make no mistake, Napoleon Solo was going to be a Section II agent for the U.N.C.L.E.