Today's Chutes and Ladders game marathon has been interrupted to provide you with this blog post. Please stand by for a message from your Author:
Hi! It's beautiful outside, I have a priority 1 request to come back for at least one more game of Chutes and Ladders, and typing is severely hampering my ability to hold my coffee mug. This week was a struggle to complete home learning activities because my oldest is very done with learning at home. I'm not a teacher, I have no training to be a teacher, but I'm trying hard to do my best as a mom, and as a teacher I'm working based on the examples of grade teachers I had whom I liked, respected, and remember fondly. (Looking at you Mr Gosse, Ms Turner, Ms Reese, Mr Jordan, and Mr Ingles.) Today I am very ready for the weekend.
That said, I'll stop here. Check out my Bookstore. Read a few of my Short Stories. Or just smile and enjoy the rest of your day. Hope your weekend is safe!
And now, back to your regularly scheduled weekend. :)
Karen’s code flashed red when she tried it. Mica jumped out of the back of the second carrier to try another code, and it also didn’t work. She and Carl took the carrier’s large toolbox to the nearest wall panel to see if there was anything they could do from there. Karen joined them as distant yells and revving engines echoed closer along the tunnel. The enemies they were running from were starting to catch up.
The three workers bypassed the keypads and ran back to the carriers, leaving the toolbox behind, as the ramp door started to drop open. Mercenaries waiting outside began shooting as soon as they could see inside. Nate revved the engine and accelerated forward before the door had dropped fully open. The front wheels slammed up, bouncing onto the ramp and tossing around everything and anyone not strapped in or belted down. Then the back wheels jarred up onto the ramp and the carrier was charging forward toward the troops shooting at them.
Nate aimed for the largest group of people. He remembered about the old building foundation near the speaker box and veered to the left at the last moment. The enemy soldiers had clustered around a steel pile, hoping to draw him into ramming it and damaging or high-centering the carrier. The steel pile scraped the passenger side armor as Nate swerved. Ray took a wider turn and passed the foundation piles on the driver’s side, coming back into line on the road behind Nate seconds later. Tire spikes popped out of the road ahead and Nate only accelerated toward them. The carriers bumped over the spikes as Nate and Ray steered toward the main road out of the base. Jerry jerked forward against his seatbelt and glared into the mirror to confirm both carriers were past the spikes without slowing. Nate chuckled at him from the driver’s seat.
“I checked when the kids were loading up. My department’s SWAT uses the same brand of solid tires,” Nate said.
“You said you were an undercover Detective?” Jerry asked.
“Only for the past five years,” Nate said with a grin. “But for all those years between military service and becoming a Detective, I was SWAT. I started in LA and then transferred to Vegas. You’re going to want to sit back and hold on again,” he added, nodding toward the changes in the middle of the road through the main gate beside security shack.
Jerry slammed back into his seat like he had a pull cord in his back. He grabbed the roll handles as Nate jerked the wheel. They skidded right, steering off the road and away from the main gate, as the steel barricades finished rising from the ground to block off the exit. Small, off-road vehicles from inside the underground base raced after them as both carriers bounced and bumped along, parallel with the fence. Nate used a moment of almost smooth driving to bang a fist on the half-door into the back of the carrier.
“Where’s the weak spot in the fence?” he asked as soon as the small door slid open and Neah’s face appeared.
“What?” Neah and Jerry asked together. Nate grabbed the steering wheel with both hands as things got bumpy again.
“You’re a bunch of seventeen year olds who’re trained in covert tactics. Where’s the spot you get through the fence? Is there another gate?” Nate demanded. He swerved around something that was either a rock or a smaller vehicle. It banged into the side of the carrier and bounced away as they sped off.
“There’s only the one gate, but the weak spot we use is half a mile ahead,” she admitted grudgingly. “You’ll see three posts where a repair was done badly. There’s a gap. These carriers might punch through.”
“Thank you,” Nate replied, his tone clipped as he concentrated on keeping the vehicle going straight as they hit a patch of loose sand.
“Isn’t the fence just chain link?” Jerry asked once they’d stopped sliding and Nate was in control again.
“No,” Nate and Neah answered together. In the mirror, Ray’s carrier swerved suddenly in the sand pit and punted a jeep sideways. The jeep went spinning out of control and crashed into another small vehicle.
“Does anyone back there have a phone?” Jerry asked. Neah held up a cell phone between Nate and Jerry a moment later. The case was bright pink with her name artfully scrawled across the back in black. Chipped corners and visible brush strokes proved the refinished look of the plain, military-issue case had been accomplished with nail polish.
The battery was low when he powered the phone on, but she’d kept it off so at least it worked after not being charged for three days. Jerry dialed the phone number from memory and started through the long list of transfers he knew he would get shuffled through.
“That’s the weak spot!” Neah called from the back. Nate cranked the wheel into hard left turn and aimed for the right side of where she’d told them to go. Lights flashed on the highway from the direction of the facility’s main gate behind them; the security vehicles from the base were already on their way.
Rather than shearing off like a chain link fence should, the wiring dug into the carrier’s armor and the two posts they’d run directly into only bent. The third post swayed from the hit, stretching toward them and pulling the wiring tight. Ray’s carrier slammed into the third post so close that his passenger side and Nate’s driver’s side mirrors were both ripped off. The third post twisted and then broke loose, accompanied by the fence wiring snapping and whipping like tension lines under the combined force of both carriers.
Nate whooped loudly as the two posts blocking their way folded over and scraped under carrier, freeing them from the facility perimeter to rumble and shake up onto the highway. Jerry cut off the sudden celebration with a slap to Nate’s arm. The person on the other end of the phone was asking Jerry to repeat the last thing he’d said before they would give him the next transfer.
A weekly blog updating on Saturdays with quick personal blurbs about me, as in what's going on during my life as an Author and mom, and that doles out my short stories and novellas in bite-sized parts for everyone to read for free!