- Chapter Eleven -
"The results are in." Blaze said, when she returned. "I've tried to fight your case by-" she was interrupted when a man wearing a soldier uniform came to her right ear, whispering something. From her facial expression, it wasn't good news.
"What?! That can't be -" She shouted and paused, as the man continued whispering.
Suddenly, the hologram disconnected and a screen of blue static replaced it. Haru stared at me, unsure what'd just happened. I rushed towards the laptop and quickly typed into one of the windows which were open.
I pointed at the screen and Haru understood.
"Move over, I'm faster." he said, gently pushing my shoulder.
I did as he told me and went over to the gym bag. I reloaded the guns, as well as those which we had taken from the scarred man. I gave two to Haru and I put the other two in the belt of my jeans. Closing the gym bag, I hauled it over my shoulder. Walking over to Haru, I saw that he was almost done.
I strolled to the bathroom, closing the door and switching on the taps. Climbing on top of the toilet, I unscrewed the vents and peeked through. It was big enough to fit two people and the bags. Dropping the vent cover near the toilet, I climbed down, leaving the bathroom and saw Haru giving me the thumbs up. He picked up the guns, after closing his laptop, and put it in his bag. With his guns in the back of his jeans, he hauled his bag onto one of his shoulders.
The devices were still disconnected, but we stood in front of them, waiting for Blaze to return.
Twenty minutes had passed and tired of standing, we were on the bed, playing noughts and crosses. SIN should improve in their services and not make 'offenders' wait. Not that we were worried about our punishment. With our record, we'd probably end up in a medium security prison. We were pretty much harmless.
"Hey Eli, how'd you know about that?” Haru asked, breaking the silence.
"It was simple. An organisation like SIN and Notch being involved means that they'd taken every precaution to not let us escape. I guess that this room was the one they'd chosen for us. Glitz is a large hotel and with it not being a holiday season, there should've been plenty of rooms free." I explained, as Haru nodded, agreeing with my theory.
"You're a smart girl, Eli." He said, with a smile, placing an 'x' on the page, blocking my win.
"Same to you." I groaned, dropping the pen on the pad.
All of a sudden, the devices turned off and we were surrounded in darkness. Switching on our torches, we followed the plan. I put the devices into the gym bag and followed Haru into the bathroom.
As expected, men came crashing through the windows, wearing night vision goggles and assault rifles, equipped with a silencer and laser dot sight.
By then, we'd climbed into the vent and crawled further away from the room. We took a sharp right and slid down a shoot, leading us to the elevator shafts. We saw four elevator carts, zooming up and down. The hotel had a huge backup generator, which we expected, since it was quite a luxurious one at that. From the speed of the carts, we knew one wrong step could kill us. Haru stepped out first. With his body flat against the concrete wall, he shuffled across the steel column. An elevator zoomed up and he froze, not daring to look down.
He took a deep breath and counted to three under his breath. About to jump, the same elevator went down, making him cling to the wall.
"C'mon Haru, just like we practiced." I shouted, encouraging him to jump.
He shuffled a little more to the right and waited for the elevator to go by, before jumping across onto a horizontal column. He quickly stood up, hugging the vertical column. I laughed at his scared expression and got out of the vent. Unlike Haru, I quickly jumped across, landing with perfect balance and posed like a gymnast, after completing her balance beam routine.
"That's how it's done Haru." I said, in a mocking tone.
He shrugged his shoulders and dropped himself down to the column below. He'd gained his confidence back and felt competitive, as he was already three floors down. I raced after him, jumping down and across the steel columns, avoiding the speeding carts.
This was the most fun we’d had together since that box ended up on our doorstep. We were half way down, when Haru missed his footing and fell forward. He quickly grabbed the column, but was losing grip. I quickly rushed down, when I saw the elevator under Haru, coming up. I stared at him horrified, trying to think of something quick. I looked at our surroundings and then realised something.
"Haru, let go when I count to five." I shouted.
"What?! No! Are you trying to kill me?" He growled, trying to lift his body up, but failed.
"Trust me. One, two...Three...Four...Five! Now!" I shouted.
Haru did as I told him and let go, screaming as he fell down. Climbing up a steel column, I jumped across. Waiting for the elevator to come up, I leaned forward and then jumped onto it. I slid across, using too much force on the jump and I started to head towards the edge. Out of the blue, a pair of strong arms wrapped around my waist and stopped me from going over it.
"Your plans are always so crazy." He laughed, letting go, knowing I was safe.
"Well Haru, we got to survive." I said, with a smile and tied my hair up in a ponytail, since the draft was ruining my hair.
I stood up and held onto the cable as the elevator took us up and then down. Riding it till the third floor, we jumped onto the vertical column and waited for the next ride. We jumped onto the elevator roof and went down, reaching the first floor. I saw a vent and quickly unscrewed it, sliding down between the concrete wall and the elevator cart.
Haru followed, squeezing himself through the gap, before the elevator went up. We climbed into the vent and got out at the nearest exit. It was the first floor hallway. After checking to see if the coast was clear, we jumped out, straightening our clothes and adjusting our bags, before passing the room casually. Once we'd arrived at the stairs, we ran down them and left the building via the fire exit.
The rest of Fair Haven was still experiencing the blackout, unlike The Glitz. Not all buildings and homes had backup generators, so we used our torches to guide our way through the district. We had to get as far away as possible, somewhere isolated and a place that not even SIN knew about.
"Eli, I’m hungry." Haru said, rubbing his stomach.
Now that I think about it, I was hungry as well. I pointed at a bench and we strolled over there, dropping our exhausted bodies onto it. I rummaged through the bag and took out the food which I had quickly grabbed from the apartment. Haru looked at it with disgust, not having an appetite for junk food.
"I want to eat proper food. You know how my stomach is sensitive," He complained.
I glared at him, not believing how picky he was at a time like this.
"So, where do you want to eat then?" I asked, sarcasm lacing my every word.
"There." He pointed at a restaurant which was open. Its sign was bright and the place looked lively. People must've run in there, when the blackout occurred. We walked over to the restaurant, known as Black Widow. As we entered, the door rang and the waitress turned towards us, flashing a smile.
"Welcome to the Black widow. I am sorry, but we've just got room for one person on the counter there. As you can see we are pretty busy." She said, in an apologetic tone.
"Go ahead and eat, Haru. I’m going to try the payphones and call Syd. I’ll call you when I am done, so don't move an inch." I said, waving bye at him as he followed the waitress to the only place left in the restaurant.
I was left alone in the darkness and had a feeling that someone was watching me. In this darkness, I couldn't see anything, so out came the torch, guiding me towards the nearest phone.
I must've walked for 15 minutes, before reaching a working payphone. The others that I'd tried were either out of order, or a homeless person was using it as a shelter. Placing the payphone receiver onto my ear I checked for the dial tone. Amazingly, it worked. I dialled Syd's number, after putting in several Chrona coins, and waited for it to ring.
"Hello?" A grumpy voice said.
"Hey Syd, its Eli. How is it going?” I asked nervously.
Syd was the type of guy that made me nervous. He was someone whose thoughts I could never predict, no matter how much I analysed.
"What do you want at this hour?" he said, sounding even grumpier.
He never started his conversation with 'hello' or 'how are you', as he wasn't a polite guy. To me, he was hard to talk to, always grumpy and grunting. He wasn't even an old man, so I never understood why he was always in such a foul mood.
"I need some information. Can you get it for me?" I asked hesitantly, not wanting to aggravate him.
"Am I your slave? What happened to 'please', young lady?" He replied, feeling offended.
"I am sorry, Sir." I said, apologetically.
He was starting to frustrate me and this was the reason why I didn't contact him that often.
"So, Eli, what information are you willing to buy?"He asked cockily, knowing that he was one of the only people who could get me to apologise like that.
"Anything you can find on SIN. Even the smallest detail counts. I know it is going to cost me, but this is important. Also, find out what happened to Notch."
I heard a pen scribble on a pad on the other side of the receiver and gentle background music that sounded like opera.
"Come to my place in an hour and I should have plenty of information for you. You know the prices?"
"Yes, but can we be there in 30 minutes, please? We’ve got nowhere else to go." I said, a hint of pleading in my voice. I know grovelling was necessary but hey, that’s as far as my pride would let me go.
There was a long pause, as he thought of the answer.
"Alright, but I don't want you kids messing up my sanctuary, understood?"
"Yes sir." I replied, with a smile on my face.
I was glad Syd said yes, since his place was the safest to escape to from pursuers. He was a total genius at being invisible, so we might as well camp with someone invisible to society. Hearing Syd putting down his receiver, I did the same, picking up the gym bag and looking for any loose change in the payphone. Finding nothing, I walked out and dialled Haru's mobile.
It was ringing for several minutes and I was starting to feel impatient. He was probably too busy scoffing down his face or flirting with a waitress. Finally he picked up.
"Hey Haru, what took you so long? I am coming to collect you so finish up and meet me outside." I said angrily.
"When we meet, I am so going to wring his neck for not picking up his phone immediately." I thought, clenching my fists.
"I am not Haru." Someone replied.
I immediately froze and stared down at my phone confused, thinking I'd dialled the wrong number, but the phone clearly displayed Haru's name and number.
"Then who are you?" I asked, worried that something had happened to Haru.
"I am the guy who's been shooting at you all night. My name is Jett."
Copyright © 2012 IJargon (Mina)