Thursday, November 1, 2007

Danger - A Safe Bahamian Novel - Day 01

Danger - A Safe Bahamian Novel - Day 01

(2:22 pm Nov 01, 2007)

*** Cliff Top and Sea

Jack looked out over the edge of the cliff to the churning waves crashing on the rocks below. A noise behind him caused him to turn around in an instant, concern, almost fear on his face.

There was a path over about ten yards of open ground which entered the bush beyond. A path he had just been running down. Running for his life. Running to the limit of his endurance. And then he had broken free of the bush into the open. And then he had reached the end of the line.

Whatever had been chasing him down that path was still chasing him, drawing nearer. Jack could see the trees moving further back in the bush, hear limbs cracking, as if some great beast was on his trail.

Something inside him changed and he turned towards the raging sea, the wind howling wildly all about and jumped into nothing.

It was a long way down and it took what seemed like a long time, and yet a long time that was over much too soon. And then he was in the water. In the water and under the water. Water of a sea that wanted to claim him for her own. Water that he could not breathe, must not try to breathe. Was being sorely tempted to try and breathe as his lings burned hotter and hotter, the CO2 levels rising in them with each passing moment.

He could feel blackness and panic each crying in the distance for his attention but he could not afford to give either the time of day as he struggled with every atom of his being to reach the surface with its life giving air.

He made it and swallowed a great lungful of air and almost swallowed another great lungful of salty water and then he was under again, a great swell passing over him on its way to the rocks of the shore. Rocks that would be more than happy to compete with the sea for the honour of ending his precious life. His precious and still much too young life.

His lungs still burned and cried out for fresh air.

He felt a stab of pain in his right thigh and then something grabbed his left calf and started to pull him towards the bottom. He thought seriously for a moment about calling back to panic before blackness claimed him.

On the cliff high above, his pursuers looked down into the raging waters with frustrated rage. There was some initial thoughts on pursuing Jack into the wild waters but when they saw him surface briefly only to go back down quickly and not come up again, those thoughts were pushed aside. They waited a long time on the cliff top watching. There were also some thoughts of climbing down the dangerous cliff face in the howling winds to search for a body but that plan was also nixed. In the end, they turned reluctantly and headed back down the path along which they had pursued the unlucky Jack.

*** Shack Near Beach

There is a shack on a small rise near the rocks, there is a beach, if you can call it that, off to the west. The hurricane shutters on the shack are in an undecided state, some down, some up, and some in between. The wind is howling through the trees and the waves are crashing against the rocks and trying their best to wash what little beach there is away.

There are other houses and shacks up and down the shore, most dark. There are lights on in the windows of this particular shack though and there is the muffled sound of a propane generator lost somewhere down in the wind.

There are some men sitting at a table in the shack and they are animated, it looks like they are having an argument. Nothing can be heard outside above the wind though.

*** Inside of Shack Near Beach

"Donny man, I een ga tell you again, stop playing that song, you are getting on my last nerve."

"I vill play hit hagain hif I vants, Sam, you know you his just mad cause hits true."

Ronnie gets up and goes over to the stereo on the side table made of cement blocks and drift wood and skips back a track and the No Voltage Blues Starts up again. "Take that Sam", he says, looking back over his shoulder with as hard a look as he can manage.

I got the no voltage blues
I got the no voltage blues
Yeah, B.E.C. is messin with me
I got the no voltage blues

"You think just cause people call you The Don that you can come around here and do as you like Donny? I gat news fa you, that een ga fly roun here."

My U.P.S. is beepin
It wakes me from my dream
And man she was a sweet ting
At least thats how it seemed

"Fly, valk, run, hor crawl, hi like hit, an hise ga play hit again, juss cause the truth his close ta ome, you don't ave to get hall vorked hup."

I got the no voltage blues
I got the no voltage blues
Yeah, B.E.C. is messin with me
I got the no voltage blues

"What you ga do is yuck up my vexation and catch yaself a bruisin and you know your tanned white skin will show those bruises for all the gals ta see," growls Sam.

My A.C.'s sittin quiet
My room is gettin warm
I lie right here and sigh it
Aint no sign of a storm

"Just cause you are blacker than night, don't think I can't bruise your hip if you try anything, they may not show, but you his goin feel them still," Ronnie says with a grin and almost a laugh.

I got the no voltage blues
I got the no voltage blues
Yeah, B.E.C. is messin with me
I got the no voltage blues

"Besides Donny, what is that outside right now? That is a storm."

I'm tryin to write my novel
In thirty short, short days
And now just like the last year
Gots to pray they change their ways

"Don't try going and getting all technical on me Sam, you know that it's an old song. It is not written about this exact night you know."

I got the no voltage blues
I got the no voltage blues
Yeah, B.E.C. is messin with me
I got the no voltage blues

The song ends and Ronnie starts to get up and head for the Stereo again. Sam is half expecting this move though and jumps up with surprising speed for a man of his size and grabs the CD out of the stereo and heads for the door. Ronnie tries to head him off but is too slow. Sam winds up and throws the CD out into the howling night. Ronnie howls and begins almost shaking with emotion.

Sam slips the CD into the back of his pants up under his shirt tail to hide it from Ronnie.

Ronie is not a small man and was once as strong as an ox from working on the boats, but his time with the drugs and the street have left him the worse for wear. Even in his best days though he would not have been a match for Sam and he knows it and he knows Sam knows he knows it. So he goes back over to his chair and throws himself into it in disgust. "Why on earth did you have to throw my CD away Sam! You know that was on of my favourites."

"Relax, man, I will get you another one some day. I warned you but you just wouldn't listen would you? Anyway, what are we going to do about Jack? He should have been here hours ago. He is not answering his cell and no one has seen him."

Ronnie pouts again and glares at Sam once more for good measure and they both burst out laughing. "You know Black Jack," says Ronnie, "he has probably found himself some tourist gal and is snatched up tight with her right now and will not blow until this wind blows over."

"Normally, yes, you might be right, but this meeting today was too important to all of us for him to miss it lightly. You know he would have been here unless something stopped him. Something must have gone wrong. Do you think he might have waited too late to come across on his boat?"

"He's no Seguillian, bet even he would know better than that Sam. No way that's it. I think we should go look for him."

"Not in this wind man, it is still way too dangerous."

*** Inside of a sub-sub-basement, deep below a huge new house on the eastern end of Paradise Island.

The room is in darkness and we cannot make out any of the occupants with any clarity whatsoever.

"What! You fail to bring him back alive like I ordered? That is bad enough, I needed to get some information from him, very valuable information."

"What could we do, he jumped off of the cliff. In the middle of a hurricane?"

"I don't know, let me think, you could have perhaps apprehended him before he reached the cliff. That might have worked! But worse, you fail to bring me his dead body and so I can't be sure that he is indeed dead. I need that information from him to help me obtain something I greatly desire. With him dead, it will be much harder to obtain the object of my desire, but at least I can be sure he will not get it before I do. But with no proof of his death other than your word..."

"But sir, he must be dead, no one could have survived in that sea! You would know if you had seen it."

"Kindly do not interrupt me when I am speaking please. As I was saying, but with no proof of his death other than your word, and you will note that I am talking of the word of those who only yesterday gave me their word that I would have him here alive before today ended. Need I say more? And I am to feel easy when those same reliable servants now give me their word that he is dead, and yet they do not bring me a body as proof, something which I stipulated only yesterday and something which was agreed to by all. Forgive me if I am not greatly comforted."

"But boss..."

"No buts! Get out! Leave me now, I need time alone to think. Come back early tomorrow morning and we can make plans over breakfast. Leave through the south tunnel please. And don't be seen."

"Yes boss. Good night sir."

A shadowy figure turns and exists through a sliding door while several others leave through a deeper shadow in another direction.

*** Inside of an unspecified dark space.

The space is in darkness and everything is indistinct, there is a faint, greenish, biological glow here and there about the walls. There is a dampness in the air and from time to time a faint drip. A figure with long, flowing hair sits quietly and looks down at another figure lying on a small cot, covered head to toe in sheets, nothing show of this figure at all, just an amorphous shape under the sheets.

There is a far away muffled sound of waves crashing against rocks with great power. We can hear the breathing of two people, one strong and deep, one shallow and laboured.

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