Danger - A Safe Bahamian Novel - Day 18
(2:05 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
*** A Lonely Room
Welcome to another day of labour gentle reader. I hope you will find some enjoyment and something to think about today. Perhaps, if we are both lucky, even something that you can build upon...
I had once again wanted to get an earlier start on the writing day, but once again failed. Best laid plans... Mice and men... And all that...
(2:20 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
(2:54 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
I really wish I could have a few days without such ultra productive stretches like I just had... They hurt...
It is hard sometimes to figure out how I actually manage to pull them off.
I think I am going to have to take you back to yesterday for some action gentle reader so hop on into that old literary time machine with me again and let's get a move on...
*** Shack Near Beach
Ronnie was still working on the computer. Jack had left about ten minutes ago. Ronnie decided he needed a bit of fresh air and a stretch so he stood up and walked out to the porch.
A limo wsa driving towards the shack. Ronnie did a few stretches and took some deep breaths and waited for the limo to arrive. Which it finally managed to do, stopping in a minor cloud of dust.
After the dust settled a bit, the driver rolled down the window and asked if Jack was ready.
"What? Jack was just picked up by someone else about ten minutes ago."
"Listen, something must be wrong, I am going to see if I can catch up to them, you call him and see if you can warn him as to what is going on and ask him to take all necessary precautions."
"I'm on it!" Said Ronnie turning to head inside as the Limo left in a cloud of dust and spinning tires.
*** Back Seat Of A Limo - On A Lonely Road
Jack's cell phone rings and the driver lets out a little laugh.
"Jack, Ronnie here. I need you to listen carefully and don't speak out loud until you fully understand what I am telling you."
"Jack, you may be in trouble. About ten minutes after you left, another Limo showed up for you. I think you may have been waylaid there pardner."
"Is there any way for you to get out of Dodge?"
"You sure about this?"
"All I can tell you iswhat I told you. The limo driver asked me to warn you and ask you to take all necessary precautions, I will leave it up to you what they might be. Good luck Jack. Do the right thing."
"OK, I should see you next week then," says Jack, hanging up.
The driver looks back over his shoulder, "Is everything OK?" he asks.
"Honky Dory ma man, it's all copa copa."
The driver faces forward again but Jack can sense him checking out the situation in back in his rear view mirror from time to time.
This makes Jack think that Ronnie might have the situation right and starts running over his options in his mind.
It isn't long before they get caught behind a slow moving truck hauling a load of cement blocks with a line of oncoming traffic and a large bend ahead.
As the get about halfway through the bend, Jack opens the door of the limo and jumps out onto the weeds of the verge. He hits the ground fairly hard and rolls several times and then is up and running into the bush beside the road.
The limo driver hits the brakes and swerves off to the side almost causing a pile up as the car behind was following too close.
Jack stops and watches from e little rise in the bush.
It looks like the driver is torn between coming to look for him and not leaving his vehicle unattended by the side of the road. He reaches in to the car and takes out a cell phone and opens it and dials.
Jack sees him talking and gesticulating wildly with his arms for a bit before he hangs up, gets back in the limo and drives off.
Jack sits down to think and catch his breath and to make sure he is mostly uninjured before he takes out his own cell phone and calls Mandy.
Jack stands up and heads back for the road figuring to try and catch a ride. Mandy answers. Caller ID.
"Jack, are you crazy?"
"What are you talking about? Do you know what I have just been through?"
"Yes, probably, but I will not pretend to understand it. I mean, why on earth would you jump from the limo?"
"Wait! How do you know I jumped from a limo?" asks Jack with a bit of an uneasy feeling beginning to creep into his belly.
"Because my driver called me and told me what you did, that's how I know. Why did you do it?"
Just then, Jack spots another limo coming down the road. Moving at an in between pace and with a driver looking for someting or someone.
"Uh oh what?"
"Listen Mandy, I can't talk now, I gotta go," says Jack as the driver of the other Limo spots him just reaching the road.
"Hey Jack! Jack Kato! Are you alright? I am glad you got away, I am here to take you to Mandy."
Jack turns and runs back into the bush. The Limo burns rubber getting to his bush jump off spot and then burns more rubber stopping.
This driver does not hesitate in leaving his limo parked in the road with the door open and heading after Jack at full speed. "Jack stop!"
Jack does not stop but puts on more speed, careful with his breathing though. It is almost like deja vu all over again he laughts silently to himself.
"Stop or I'll shoot!"
Jack zags to the right but does not stop.
(4:04 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
A vague childhood memory of a blue hole in the are comes to him and he heads in the direction he remembers it.
A short while later, he breaks from the bush and there is the blue hole ahead of him, the water all brown with a green scum here and there on the surface. It is deja vu all over again he thinks... He hears his persuer in the bush behind him. Here goes nothing. He keeps running and dives headlong into the brown water that he remembers a blue from his childhood. It is about eight feet down to the water.
He enters the water and swims down about thirty feet and sees what he is looking for. There is an opening in the limestone wall and he swims in.
He does not like taking risks like this, but he does not like being shot at either.
The passage angles up and soon his head breaks the surface and he takes a much needed breath, careful not to make much noise.
He is in a little under ground chamber. It is very dim. The air is sort of fresh, but damp and earthy. The light and fresh air is from a few very narrow passages that reach the surface via several twists and turns. There is not way to see the surface from in here and no way to see in here from the surface.
As soon as his head breaks the surface, Jack takes his phone from his pants pocket and lifts it above the surface of the water and sets it to vibrate. He hopes that it will still work but he seriously does not want anyone up there to hear it ring right about now.
(4:33 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
*** A Lonely Room
Well, gentle reader, we have spent too much time in yesterday now. We really should be getting back to today. The question is, where...
(5:26 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
*** Rising Tide - Between Nassau And Hole In The Wall
Jack and Mandy are standing up on the bow watching some dolphins that have joined them and are cavorting in the bow wave. A group of flying fish get disturbed and break out of the water and fly off to the port. Jack always gets a little thrill seeing them do that, or seeing the houndies go skipping along the surface.
"So Jack, why wont you tell us how you got away?"
"I did tell you."
"Jack, I can tell that you are leaving out key details. Why wont you come clean?"
"Secrets can be important to survival my dear, surely someone accustomed to secrets like you are should understand that Mandy."
"OK, then, you are one hard headed man, you know that?"
"Sounds good to me, I never wanted to end up as soup in any case."
"Let's go to the bridge and have a session with the captain and Sarai shall we?"
(6:54 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
(8:21 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
*** A Lonely Room
Honestly, a major block seems to have snuck up on me unawares and taken me captive. Too bad I did not have a blue hole of my own to dive into and escape...
How am I going to pullthis off tonight at a good clip and finish up early so that I can try and get a reasonable night's sleep. Definately something I am in need of and have been getting too little of.
*** Rising Tide - Between Nassau And Hole In The Wall
Sarai, Jack, and Mandy are on the bridge, talking over options on what to do should they encounter the people Mandy is after.
They have apparently been operating several craft in the area of the Abacos. There are reports that at least one is a research vessel that has been seen operating from Hole In The Wall along the coast to Sandy Point and out to Gorda Cay and even as far as Mores Island.
There is another one that has been described as more of a exploration and salvage vessel that seems to be operating all along from Green Turtle Cay up as far as Allans-Pensacola Cay.
Intercepted and decoded traffic indicated that the research vessel had made the first progress but that the salvage vessel may have made some more recent and perhaps more important finds.
"So, what do you want to do Mandy," asks Jack.
"Well, I say let's try and get close to the research vessel and see what we can see. After that, if we want to check out the other one, I can get a copter in to take us if it seems like we need to rush, or we can head back around and see what we can see with them."
"Is that doable?" How can we learn anything without giving ourselves away?"
"Well, I have some ideas, but to be honest, I am not all that worried should we give ourselves away. It might be a good thing to make them a bit nervous. Perhaps they will be more likely to make a mistake."
"Are any of you hungry?" asks Sarai, "I am famished. Why don't we head down to the galley and see what we can scrounge up?"
"That sounds like a plan, Sarai, you have any conch aboard?"
"Jack, you know me when I am in the islands, I always try and have a good supply of conch close at hand. You feeling like a little salad?"
"Feels like too much work right now. How about a quick scorch though?"
"Are you gonna make it for us?"
"I can do that. Let's go."
And so they head on down to the galley, Jack's mouth is already starting to water. Sarai's is already starting to burn. She has had Jack's scorches before.
(8:51 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)
*** A Lonely Room
Now gentle reader, by a very strance co-incidence, just as our three friends were heading down to the galley of the Rising Tide to make themselves a scorch, Fred had just finished making some for Golden Child uo at Nun Jack.
*** 38' Cheoy Lee Ketch - Up Around Nun Jack, Abaco
Golden Child is sort of laying off in the cockpit. Her back is against the cabin and her feet are towards the stern.
Fred comes up from below carrying a bowl in one hand and a jug in another.
"Look what I got for us baby... Some fresh scorched conch and some just squeezed sour orange ade. You want some?"
"I'll certainly take some of what you got my love. Come over here and sit with me. Can you rub some lotion on me please?"
Fred goes over and rests his load on the cockpit floor and sits beside his bride. "I thin I can mamage that," he smiles, taking the lotion from her and pouring some into his left palm before rubbing his palms together to warm the lotion. "Come sit here."
Golden Child moves on the seat and turns so that he can lotion her shoulders and back. "Fred?"
"What do you think that boat is doing out there? Do you think they may be looking for treasure or something like that?"
"Could be sweet, there have been rumours of treasures floating around here ever since I was a little boy, I imagine a lot longer that that. People seem to want to try their luck from time to time, but we mostly figure that there is not a whole lot of success on the part of too many of them. I sometimes think of going and looking for some myself. It would really be a trip to find some, don't you think?"
"It might be fun, yes! Could we go look together some time?"
"Sure, some day, but let's not get our hopes up. I sometimes think of buying myself a bunch of lottery tickets too. I sometimes wonder which project would have better odds of success."
(9:07 pm Sunday Nov 18, 2007)