Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Code
by David Juhren

The year is 1941, the place is London, and Roger Mathews, a handsome 28-year-old special attaché with the U.S. government is secretly working closely with the British on solving the riddle of the Enigma machine, a device the Nazis have developed to put their military messages into an almost unbreakable code. British merchant ships are being torpedoed at perilous rates, and England has only several months before it runs out of supplies. The code must be broken, and Roger is called to a secret joint British/American meeting, where it is revealed that the British are very close to solving the problem. They disclose that they have four of the five “rotors” that operate the Enigma machine, and only need the last to complete a set, and break the code. The French Resistance has come into possession of the last needed rotor, and is offering to trade it for needed weapons and supplies.

In this meeting, Roger is teamed up with another young man, Clive Westmore, a captain in the Royal Navy. The two men are put in charge of the secret mission and its execution—to procure the rotor, and return it safely to Britain. What’s more, as the U.S. has not yet entered the war, the mission is doubly secret, because if the Germans gained evidence of American involvement, it could scandalously draw the U.S. into the war. Further complicating matters, the two men are instantly attracted to each other, and begin a romantic involvement whose tender alliance can only make more intricate their already convoluted mission.