I have to admit I got a little nervous as soon as we started out from the pub. I was in unfamiliar territory because the battle for these last few days had ripped the town apart and it was nearly all rubble with the occasional wall for cover as we moved along. I hardly recognized anything. Scotch disappeared within seconds as he took point as our scout and I would see him very rarely after that. Campeche moved with such fluid grace even under all those robes of hers I was stunned by it and Colonel Gin also moved like a soldier trained for combat. Miss Wine stayed with me as we plodded along and boy did we plod. The place was hardly passable with all the rubble.
It didn’t take too long though and I began to feel another presence. Actually there were two presences I could feel one to the right of us and one to the left. Just out of reach in the shadows like they were flanking us. I was nervous because I was now of the opinion we were being followed so I mentioned it to Colonel Gin in a whisper.
“Didn’t want to say anything at the pub, ole boy.” he responded in a whisper as well, “I arranged for some special backup, I think the pub has a spy so I didn’t want to say anything out loud. Let’s just say there are a couple more people in this raid.”
“Spy? Who are you talking about?”
“No time. Need to keep moving.”
And so move we did.
The basic theory that we were under was that once Rum and Baba attacked then Mr. Lies would try to drive them off the beach with everything he had. Once he did that he could crush the pub at his leisure. Our goal was to hit him from behind in such a way that it forced him to divert some of his forces away from crushing Rum and Baba and those to wonderful pirate captains could break through. If they did then we had Mr. Lies on two fronts and we could pretty much squeeze him. That was the theory but I was taking a page form Richard Marchinko and expecting that plan to go right out the window into situation FUBAR once the shooting started.
That said we made better time once we got past the rubble of the war zone and got to places that resembled more houses and streets than rocks piled on the floor. We also began to run into the evidences of the Bloodsuckers. There were corpses here and there. All of them had been stripped naked and were far too pale as each one of them had been drained dry of blood through two holes in their neck. It angered me so much that so much evil had been done in the name of Mr. Lies trying to destroy my pub.
Then we saw Scotch heading back toward us.
“I found their headquarters. It has Mr. Lies flag over it and it is lightly guarded. It is the library.”
Great. Blood is one stain that is tremendously hard to get out of paper pages.
We debated for a little how to handle it but Scotch told us there were two guards. One at the main door and one at the back door.
“I got the front door guard. I think I can distract him long enough for Scotch to slit his throat.”
“I think our friends will handle the back door guard.” Colonel Gin added.
It was perfectly executed out front as Miss Wine sauntered up with call girl grace to the front door guard and started asking him if she was expected. The guard was completely in lust as she talked and never saw Scotch come up behind him and before he knew it the guard was no longer able to speak and was smoking into death. We entered the front doors of the library cautiously but it was clear that no one was home. We found their version of a war room but it was empty of people. I also could not see anything that would give us an edge. Then I saw a piece of paper off to the side that was clipped with a picture of my wife. I picked it up and there was a reference to the fact that she had been captured and was being held in the basement.
I drew my BFG and told Gin and company what I had found. They all frowned but nodded. They knew we had to get to her and rescue her or there was going to be trouble. We found the stairs and headed down. Scotch covered the top and we descended cautiously but as quickly as possible. My heart was pounding in my chest.
The basement was pretty much open with a small utility room in one corner that we couldn’t see in. What we could see is that the basement had become Mr. Lies torture room. There were several dead people here some with body parts missing and others were simply staring a death stare into space. I was afraid but relieved because I didn’t see my wife among them.
We opened the utility room door and we found her. She was bound to a chair and gagged but also unconscious. Wine and Gin watched the door while Campeche and I untied her and removed her gag. She fell limply into my arms. She was alive but her breathing was slow and shallow. Obviously she had been drugged and was not going to help us as we moved. My wife is fairly short and she also is pretty light so I threw her over my shoulders fireman’s carry style and indicated we need to get out of there. WE left the library OK but then I got that sinking feeling in my stomach. This raid was going far too well and far too easy. It made me extremely worried that something very bad was about to happen. I didn’t have to wait long.
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