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The Secret Adventurer's Club Second Adventure (part 7)

 
Joe Spivey's picture
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On hearing the familiar shouted command of adult authority the four adventurers immediately went into kid 101 – automatic instant denial. They spun around as one and with all wearing the same look of surprised innocence and the words ‘it wasn’t me’ waiting ready in their throats. Clubs and sticks, and in Finny’s case the elderly long barrelled .45 calibre revolver, disappeared behind backs. Suitably prepared, they assessed the threat level this particular adult presented.

Bill Baily was the garage manager. He had been crouched down securing the filling cap to one of the underground tanks when approaching childish chatter had attracted his attention. Kids the age of these four were not a common site unless they were safely secured in the back of a vehicle, or at least in the company of a suitably armed adult or two. Four free range juveniles this far out from the city was rare and just a little suspicious. Seeing they were making a beeline for the LifeNet bunker he stood up and called to them.

And now here they were, ten metres apart. The boys looked to Finny for a lead.

“We weren’t doing nothing mister.”

Bill took a step forward and put his hands on his hips.

“Y’all were about to go where you know you ain’t allowed.”

The boys joined in.

“No we weren’t.”

“Nuhuh.”

“We was just gonna sit on the wall.”

Bill had kids of his own and knew this wasn’t going to go anywhere so he tried a change of tack.

“So what y’all doing out here? Where’s your folks?”

Finny opened her mouth but Casper beat her to it.

“We’re going to Hope.”

Finny jumped in with a qualifier before any of the others came out with the very lame ‘we’re exploring’.

“Joe Spivey sent us.”

That might well have worked inside Flag but it seemed Mr. Baily either hadn’t heard of Joe or didn’t care because he just snorted.

“I don’t care who ‘sent’ you. Little kids like you have no business…”

It wasn’t deliberate, or even thought about. It was just that, at that moment, Finny’s already tired right arm had had enough of trying to hold the pistol up behind her back and allowed the weight of it to flop her arm down to her side.

The effect of the sudden appearance of a weapon on Bill Baily was profound. In his years out here first as a mechanic and then manager Bill had seen all kinds of situations he wanted no part of. Car chases, gun fights, rabid animals, biker gans, he’d seen and hid from them all. But a confrontation with a little girl totting a gun way too big for her was something he had only ever come across once before, many years ago and the resulting carnage she had wrought with her shotgun right outside his place of work was something he didn’t want to see again.

Very carefully, so as not to die just because his movement was misinterpreted, he lifted an arm and pointed down the road.

“Hope Springs is thata way Miss.”Casper, Onetooth and Worms looked at Finny with widening eyes, and in Onetooth’s case open mouthed awe.

Finny herself took a moment to realise what had just happened before going along with it just so they could get out of there. She signalled her friends with a flick of her head.

“’Kay mister. We’ll be going now.”

Giving the man a wide berth, the adventurer’s shuffled around him and onto the road. Mr. Baily, on his way to the cover of the small store attached to the garage called after them.

“Watch out fer the coyotes down the road. Dead horse has got ‘em all in a fightin’ mood.” With that he disappeared into the shop to agitatedly inform those inside about the evil of organised crime getting its claws into the city’s youth and the worsening standards of parenting in general.

Comments

Hyle Troy's picture

Hmm...   so far so good.....  so far

I would rather die peacefully in my sleep, like Grandad, than screaming, like his passengers



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