Ch14: Ensnared

Copyright © 2013 by P.A. Lackey
All rights reserved.
No part of this story may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means including information storage and retrieval systems, without permission in writing from the author. 

Chapter Fourteen: Ensnared

The large warehouse loomed over them like an ancient beast standing against the ocean wind. The rolling doors were unhinged from their rollers leaving a narrow gap for Arius and Brockumus to squeeze through, but they knew not what waited upon the other side.
The interior of the warehouse was lofty. A second floor awaited several yards farther where two sets of stairs led to an upper mezzanine before several door led to other areas. Below, more doors awaited opening which left much ground to be covered. An old truck sat in the middle of the first room which Brockumus headed for. Finding the input for the fuel, he opened the cap and sniffed only to distort his face in disgust. The gas was rotten.
“Perhaps we can find better fuel elsewhere,” he said.
“I’ll take the top, you the bottom,” Arius suggested, with a wary gaze to the upper mezzanine.
He didn’t like the idea of splitting up, but they had to find fuel if they were to get off the island. They had contacted Dueson and Ruekrow through the wheel, and they were supposed to be on their way to the warehouse. Arius just didn’t want to be caught alone with them.
“I suppose so,” replied Brockumus. “But be careful.”
Arius nodded, and soon he made his way up the stairs. Old furniture and papers littered the upper mezzanine, and he found the next door hard to open. It budged with some force, and he made his way down the next hall. Windows took in the distant moonlight casting the long hall into a surreal sight.
Clearing several small rooms and closets, Arius found himself in another large room with workbenches and walls full of tools. Several doors led in and out of the room; several of them were open giving him a peep into the rest of the massive warehouse. A chill traversed his spine as he nearly expected something awful to come out of those dark rooms and halls.
To his right he caught sight of a red container with a spout. Moving toward it he examined the inner contents and found what he thought to be fuel. Sniffing it, he found it tolerable.
Something shuddered behind him, causing him to spin around with his rifle. The sights landed upon Ruekrow who had seemingly been trying to sneak up on him.
“You going to kill me too now,” Ruekrow said, with intimidation.
Arius lowered his rifle and replied, “I don’t kill my allies.”
“That’s not what I’ve heard. I hear you’ve had some questionable events in your life.”
“I don’t know what you’ve heard, but you don’t know me or my past.”
“I know you’ve managed to make some powerful people back home angry. Should we talk about that?”
 A shot fired from somewhere below, and its vibrations shuddered throughout the warehouse.
“Brockumus,” Arius said with worry.
The two of them hurried to investigate, Arius grabbing the fuel container on his way out of the room. Through several halls they came to a staircase which creaked on their way down. The place seemed to grow darker as they came to the first floor, and soon they were surveying the floor.
They came to a large room where ancient looking machinery collected dust in every corner. Pillars supported the vast ceiling overhead, and the place was like a cluttered maze. Weaving around the junk Arius spotted Brockumus against a far pillar with what appeared to be a wounded arm. Blood ran down the sleeve. 
“What happened?” Arius asked, moving to assist him.
“It’s Dueson,” he warned, before spotting Ruekrow. “Look out!”
Arius felt the coming impact moving through the air, but was too slow to turn around. The butt of Ruekrow’s rifle hit him square between the shoulders, knocking him to the ground where he dropped the container. A scuffle broke out behind him, as Brockumus tried to fight.
Arius jumped to his feet with his rifle and spun around only to find Brockumus under Ruekrow’s hold. A pistol was to his head, and Ruekrow dared him to make a move.
“What are you doing Ruekrow?” Arius asked, with his heart racing.
“Drop your weapon Arius,” Ruekrow replied. “You’re not going anywhere.”
Arius’ senses alerted him to another presence behind him, and he felt a gun pressed against the back of his head.

“Do what he tells you Arius,” Dueson’s voice came. “Your times up.” 

Be sure to check out my book, Ground of Oam, here. 



Post a Comment